Public Lab Research note

Update 1 on Sky Cam Enhancement - GSoC 2014

by mercyorangi | May 30, 2014 20:35 30 May 20:35 | #10519 | #10519

My attempt and results

This is my week one update. Been a good start and I am appreciating the learning curve already.

I have successfully cloned the Sky Cam project to my local workstation and further pushed it up to GitHub but not without a few hitches! I have learnt, through this task, the importance of code collaboration. I have also been looking at the code-base. Getting the flow of the project was not as hard as I expected, thanks to the clean code by the initial contributor, I take this up, and strive to have as clean code () once the summer is over.

SkyCam currently runs on Android Version 3.0 (API Level 11), it would be great to lower this target slightly to target more handsets, but at the same time, also weigh between leveraging Android features available on higher Android Versions and targeting a larger audience; this is what I am currently looking at.

Schedule for the next 3 weeks

  • Week 2 26th -31st May -- Create & design a remote data store and share key with mentors
  • Week 3 2nd - 7th June -- Re-factor project to target Android devices from API level 8 - (currently targets from API 11 and above)
  • Week 4 9th - 14th June -- Create home-page/landing-page before loading the camera

Questions and next steps

  • I have Semester end exam from this week; ending 6th; might be slightly slow in my work-plan, but will work on catching up.
  • I am planning on working on a main them for Sky Cam (main color), any preference/suggestions before-hand?


Hi mercy! Thanks for the update. Did you see there is an android 2.3.x version of sky can too? And mohit who wrote it was mentioning some feature of 4.x which he wanted to use but I forget what the issue was. I thought the 2.3.x version was listed on the Sky Camera page... is it?

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Hello Warren, I haven't been able to get the 2.3.x version.. The code base provided on github points to min API of 11 (version 3.x.x). I did see 2.3.x version listed but didn't get the GitHub repo,. Currently searching through for the link.

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Thanks for the work.

This weekend we will make some experiments with the sky-cam flying a flone (quadcopter with android onboard) over some mountains near Barcelona.

Why the actual version is not in android play? Right now is a bit dificult to share.

I'm thinking about a better way to have the pictures of the camera back in another phone, i thing a basic streaming should work better than have hundred of pictures in the mail inbox.


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Good progress update. May not be in current scope, but adding output that can be used to trigger CHDK external cameras is a "nice to have." Would enable post - processing the phone gps and other sensor info with higher quality external camera images, if desired.

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Hi Mercy,

We did some test with the app this weekend, we are making the map this days, tell me if you want some images for test. We use Samsung S3 and Sony Xperia SL, we had beter results in Xperia.

I think the feature threshold needs to be improved with some way to know if it's working or not.

If you want I already made an app than uses gyro+accel data, I can share the code if this can help you. We can use also the magnetometer for include rotation in metadata.


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Hi Lot, Been working on an alternative to mailing the photos; in which case I am implementing your proposal to have them streamed to another phone. I think this will make much more sense as the photos will be accessible much swiftly.

I would also so much appreciate a few images from you for testing purposes, as I will have close to real tests.

Thanks for the comparison you made between photos got from the Samsung S3 and those from the Xperia SL... Just confirming, did you mean better in terms of clarity or other factors are in play too?

@patcoyle, hi Quite a nice idea of adding trigger for CHDK external cameras. However, this will be a little bit tough since I currently lack the hardware to enable me see this through in terms of accessing the cam's firmware and testing. ANy workarounds on this that you might have?

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Hi, Mercy - i want to emphasize that our major objective is to have GPS exif tags in the images, as that will integrate with Vidun's project. It would be great if you could focus on that portion of the project first, and release a working version. Then an extra feature addressing the photo emailing would be an excellent follow-up. Thanks and sorry for the slow feedback!

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Hi, Lot - yes please! If you could share your gyro/accel code that would be super. Can you link to a Github project for us?

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