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Seeking Comfort From My Personal Security Camera
Written by Junhyun Back | Published. 2020.09.15 14:20 | Count : 343

Life in the modern era has changed drastically. Whenever we assume that we could control a situation, another unexpected outbreak would disrupt our everyday life. It is definitely a time of significance that challenges people both physically and mentally. As people are under quarantine for months, limitations in active movements easily exhaust their bodies. Furthermore, people are forced to experience a repetitive life cycle in which nothing is new. As a result, I considered it important to spend a certain amount of time distracting me from my daily stresses.

Hobbies are excellent entertainment tools that have become a significant part of people’s lives, especially after the COVID-19 outbreak. Due to social regulations that restrict people to gather in large crowds, people have not been able to enjoy sports or other outdoor events. As a result, people are compelled to seek fun activities within their personal boundaries. I have also been restricted within my own place in a similar situation.

In light of finding a new personal hobby that I could enjoy at home, I wandered around my house. I searched for certain objects that I could cultivate as my new source of relief. However, searching for something fresh and exciting was a difficult process. Luckily, while surfing on the internet, I stumbled upon an article that contained a list of projects with tutorials that could be done through Raspberry Pi 4, a minimal and low-cost computer. I learned that with a couple of cables and a camera module, there were limitless things that could be programmed through such a tiny computer.

Among the various projects that I had read, the personal security camera was the most attractive program that I wanted to build. It was relatively straightforward, and I thought I could use it in the future when I go back to my home in the Philippines. Although there were numerous ways a security camera could be implemented, I focused on incorporating an open-source Linux distribution named motionEyeOS. An open-source distribution means that anyone could easily access and did not require any sophisticated programming skills. The major materials needed were a Raspberry Pi model, a USB Type-C cable, an HDMI cable, a microSD card, and a camera module. 

[Photo of the necessary components needed for the security camera.
Photo Credit: Junhyun Back]

After preparing all those parts, I started connecting the necessary cables and the camera to the Raspberry Pi model, and the other end to a monitor. I then downloaded the security camera program from my laptop. That was all it took! I was then able to see camera footage from my laptop through a wireless connection. I was impressed that I could create a security camera with just these five electronic parts within one hour.

[Screenshot of a working security camera taken by the writer.
Photo Credit: Junhyun Back]

This particular hobby of mine soon became a meaningful part of me. During times when I would feel effortless and disintegrated, exploring different projects that could be built with such few objects seemed extremely fascinating. Moreover, my interests in technology have grasped my attention. When I would watch and read different tutorials, time flew by very quickly. Implementing those with my very own hands was, of course, much more engaging.

[A photo of the writer and a laptop screen displaying his face through the camera.
Photo Credit: Junhyun Back]

Through this unique experience of creating a personal security camera, I reflected on what time was like before the pandemic. Although I was confined within my own room to seek a replacement for my previous hobbies, I found the smaller pieces of happiness. This project not only captivated my fondness for technology but also drew me to appreciate fragments of contentment that are entirely imperative in such agonizing times. Although this particular hobby is geared towards my personal interests in technology, I would definitely recommend others to simply play around with these parts. They are affordable and do not require any high-level thinking. Even if it is not this specific hobby, people could cultivate several other things as their new source of happiness. Therefore, I highly recommend people seek outside their usual modes of entertainment to find alternatives that could brighten up their days.


Junhyun Back
Grade 12
Brent International School Manila

Junhyun Back  student_reporter@dherald.com

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