Project Guidance (Security Camera)

I am fairly new to working with Arduino, I have admired many of the projects that have been created using Arduinos, and until now I have not been able to find a way to use one in my personal life.

A little bit of background on the project. I work for a nursing home, and we are installing a new nurse call system. This new system uses IR, RF, and LF to locate residents and staff, it is like a Life Alert System that you can have in your home, but on steroids. The sytem is dependent on residents and staff wearing badges or pendants to identify themselves to the system. However in some rooms we are also adding motion detectors. These motion detectors can trigger a 24v relay. They idea that I was having was to have the motion detector triger the relay, and that will trigger the Arduino to take a 10 pictures over 10 seconds and then save those pictures to a network Share. What I am wanting to know is if this is possible. I have ordered an Arduino Uno, an Ethernet Shield with SD card, and a Serial Camera (http://www.ladyada.net/products/camera/.

I believe that I understand how to get the camera to work with the Adruino and to write to the SD card, I have not been able to find examples of writing the files to a network share though.

Any help that you guys can offer would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Steve

An alternate approach which you can get off the shelf is an ordinary webcam with motion detection software running on a PC - the software then logs a sequence of stills or short video clip to whatever location you have specified.

The only problem with that is that the off the shelf web cam does not write back to the Database for the nurse call system to say that someone without a badge was in the room, and doesn’t alert anyone. Also I an not wanting to have a pc in every room with the camera.

Has anyone interfaced an off-the-shelf webcam with an Arduino?

I am also looking at using an OV7670 since they are under $10 each. I just haven't answered the interface question there either.

Google OV7670 + Arduino...

I know that the OV7670 will work with the Arduino, and I have found the code and wiring diagram for it already (here: http://www.ladyada.net/products/camera/), the question that I have is how to get the images that it captures to a network share instead of storing onto the SD card? Or if there is a better way to make the images accessible after capture. The nurse call system can be setup to send out an email if the motion sensor is tripped to tell someone to look at the images, but I don't want to have to have someone pull the SD card every time to look at the image.

the question that I have is how to get the images that it captures to a network share instead of storing onto the SD card?

First, you connect the Arduino to the network. Once you've done that, the rest is easy.

WiFi, ethernet, direct to PC on network, etc. You have choices.

I am new to this, do you have any coding examples of storing to a network share, or have any sites that would reference that? I have done some Google searching and haven't found any examples (maybe using the wrong keywords).

do you have any coding examples of storing to a network share

No, but they would depend on how you connect the Arduino to the network. You haven't disclosed that.

I'm sorry, we were planning on using the standard Ethernet via the Ethernet Shield on the Adruino.

I haven't seen an SMB or NFS library. I think you'd be better having a web server that could take the files in and write them out.

slewis84: I believe that I understand how to get the camera to work with the Adruino and to write to the SD card, I have not been able to find examples of writing the files to a network share though.

I haven't done it with an Arduino, but how about using the Ethernet shield to connect to a (web) server - hosted locally of course - and just "upload" the file with the picture in it. Or, FTP it.

slewis84: The only problem with that is that the off the shelf web cam does not write back to the Database for the nurse call system to say that someone without a badge was in the room, and doesn't alert anyone. Also I an not wanting to have a pc in every room with the camera.

Well, there are off-the-shelf solutions that certainly can do any of that, except that I don't see any way for any of these solutions to know whether there was a badge in the room. How do you envisage that part working?

I am new to this,

I suggest you do more research on current network and security cams. They can send emails with pix when motion is detected, record to DVR units, and more.

I don't see any way for any of these solutions to know whether there was a badge in the room. How do you envisage that part working?

The nurse call system works with IR sensors as well as motion detection. If the system sees motion without the IR picking up a badge, it can trigger a 24v relay that I was planning on using to trigger the Arduino.

I suggest you do more research on current network and security cams. They can send emails with pix when motion is detected, record to DVR units, and more

Like I had stated before, since the motion detection on the current out of the box security cameras can not tie back into the system this is not a feasible option for us. We need the nurse call system to trigger the camera so that we have the record of the movement in the room.

I have figured out what I need to do now. I have setup the Arduino with the ethernet shield as a web server so that I can browse the files on the SD card from a web page. The only issue that I am having now is that I am unable to open the Jpeg files from the SD card or to download them. If I plug the SD card into my computer I am able to view the files.

Has anyone been able to use the webserver to view images?

The webserver code that I used is found here: https://github.com/adafruit/SDWebBrowse/blob/master/SDWebBrowse.ino

slewis84:
Like I had stated before, since the motion detection on the current out of the box security cameras can not tie back into the system this is not a feasible option for us. We need the nurse call system to trigger the camera so that we have the record of the movement in the room.

So the idea is that the relay signal means “take some pictures” and you want your solution to write a sequence of pictures to a file server somewhere? Well the easy solution would be Arduino, gobetweeno and a PC with a webcam and freeware to take pictures on demand. Does the relay have to be in the room you’re trying to photograph? If not, wireless web cams controlled by a central PC would be one possible solution. Otherwise, I suppose you could bring the relay signal back to the PC using an Arduino and radio and otherwise use the same solution. The hardware cost is starting to add up, though.