Email This Camera to Know Everything's OK at Home

Email This Camera to Know Everything's OK at Home

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Taryn Williford
May 31, 2011

What would your ideal home security system look like for a renter with a modest apartment? It would probably be small and mobile; easy to move from this apartment to the next without needing to install a ton of software or hardware. And you really don't need video, right? Just a quick snapshot that everything's OK whenever you want to check in. So this 5-inch round, stand-alone, DIY (!) surveillance camera that responds to emails by sending you a still photo of what is sees—well, it's pretty much is the best apartment security camera ever, isn't it?


If you're the master of a multi-million dollar compound, it's kind of important to have a serious home surveillance system that keeps its eyes on every square inch of your very valuable property. But those of us who can see both ends of our apartment from the living room couch aren't really paranoid enough to blow heavy cash on a security camera.

Still, it would be nice to check in on our space while we're away. And for that, we have this mobile interactive emailing DIY security camera.


It's called The Autonomous Surveillance Camera. It uses a cellular network (the developer says he used a Pay-as-You-Go phone from AT&T in his) to respond to your emails with snapshots of your house:

"The device checks pre-defined email mailbox once an hour. If a new email is received the camera takes a picture, saves it on a SD-card and emails the image to its owner."

Thanks to open-source code posted at Google Code, you can make your own version of this awesomely interactive security camera. You'll just need a lot of electrical and coding know-how. Oh, and a 3D printer. You have one of those, right?

If you ask us, it's totally worth pulling a few favors with some skillful engineer friends. This camera would be perfect in a ton of situations:


  • If you're paranoid about leaving the oven on.

  • If you're not sure that you locked the door.

  • If you want to check in while you're on a vacation.

  • If you have a small puppy at home that you want to check up on.


Consider it like a little virtual house sitter. Now if we could only get it to feed the dog.



Google Code via Lifehacker

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