Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Looking for video survaillance solution

I have been looking for a while for good solution for surveillance software and it has been quite hard without putting lots of money into it. First try was using the build in solutions of the cameras, i.e., FTP uploading. This was proven quite hard as it introduces a lot of points for errors. Each camera had to be controlled separately for settings from the webui pages. The most issues were caused by the old D-Link DNS-323 nas running 2x500G harddrives. The NAS was chosen over E-mail uploads as the e-mail uploads need constant network connection as well as lots of bandwidth if one extends the cameras up to 8 that is the current plan. Also because some of the cameras will watch home yards which have lots of trees and bushes that move in the wind, it makes quite a lot of traffic which is not really suitable for e-mails.

After all the problems with the solution above I started to look for NAS solutions that have surveillance features such as QNAP or Synology, the cost on those would be quite high as the hardware itself costs hundreds of € and then the license another X€. This would also mean that one would be on tight to that hardware and new requirements in the future would mean buying completely new hardware without possibility to really just do e.g. cpu or memory upgrades. Similar problem would be also with devices like dahua NVR's which have limited hw specs and in the end as the plan is to try different type of cameras buying NVR from one brand could limit the cameras that can be attached.  So the plan changed to have dedicated computer to run on these.

After the decision about dedicated computer I found out about iSpy that have been using for a while. iSpy is quite nice solution and one of the best thing is that it is free and open source (excluding some special services). After using it for couple of months it still feels that it is not the best and seems to be a bit too complex for and hard to use. After some time one of my friends pointed out xeoma which seems like an interesting option, which I will test next.

Currently I have 3 cameras in the network, Dahua IPC-HFW3200SP PoE, 2Mpix Full HD camera, Foscam FI8918W VGA WiFi camera and then one unbranded 2Mpix PoE bullet camera. More cameras will come later when I get the base of the system done and running. Only one of the cameras is currently in the final position at the moment with proper cables etc.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Nemo Mobile on CuBox

Finally all the needed stuff for cubox have been merged to Nemo and Mer and I got time to cleanup the adaptation bits a bit as well. So now we have Nemo Mobile running on CuBox, there are some bits and pieces still missing but it can be already used to some extend. Main issue seems to be with the graphics drivers, but anyway here is a short video of it..

Creating your own image

To create an image you need to install Mer SDK and then login to the sdk as guided. Download the .ks file

curl -O  http://sage.kapsi.fi/sagestechblog/cubox/cubox-2012-10-16-armv7hl.ks

And start the image build:

PATH=$PATH:/sbin sudo mic cr raw cubox-2012-10-16-armv7hl.ks --arch=armv7hl

Next thing is to put the image to the microsd card, example guide in nemo wiki. After this is done put the microsd card to the device and that is it.

Nemo Mobile UI on Snowball

I have been working a bit again with the snowball and now I got the Nemo Mobile UI booted on the device. It is still missing some bits and pieces but it is already something that can be easily tested and reproduced.

Here is a quick tutorial how to make an image yourself. First you need to get the Mer Platform SDK to build the images to which there is quite nice installation guide in the Mer wiki pages.

After you have installed the Mer Platform SDK log in and download the .ks file for building the image.

curl -O http://sage.kapsi.fi/sagestechblog/snowball/snowball-2012-10-16-armv7hl.ks

After getting the .ks file you need to modify it a bit, and instructions for that are in the .ks file so you need to do some reading ;).

When .ks file is modified you can build the image with following command:

PATH=$PATH:/sbin sudo mic cr raw snowball-2012-10-16-armv7hl.ks --arch=armv7hl

After image is built you can put the image to microsd card by following for example Mer wiki.

Now you are set for booting the device, have fun. Here is a very short video about the performance.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Booting Mer on CuBox

So here it is CuBox very small and quite nice piece of hardware made by SolidRun. It includes for example HDMI, 2x USB, 1x eSATA, build in console with microUSB and best of all it is packaged to very nice and small casing. By default Cubox developer platform comes with sd card that has ubuntu installation on it, but when I got the device I had already decided to try to run Mer on the device.

After some time I got the device booted and posted a message in the twitter about that as well and promised an blog post about how everyone else can do the same thing as well, so here it is.

Booting Mer on cubox is relatively easy, what you need to do is to get the image (.raw.bz2 file) I made from http://sage.kapsi.fi/Mer/CuBox/20120801/ and use dd to write the image to the sd card. Guide to image writing can be found from  http://wiki.merproject.com/wiki/Nemo/Installing#Raw_Image_Write

After the image is written to the sdcard enter the sdcard to your CuBox and power it on. Currently the image has a bit limited functionality, however the following features I tested:
- Serial with microUSB
- Ethernet via RJ45 connector
- HDMI with normal fbdev driver without any hardware acceleration
- USB ports ;)

I bet many other features work as well, but for now those were the most interesting ones for me to get the device booting and to network. The image that is available on the URL above boots to full screen xterm.

I will continue working on CuBox in near future and try to get the 3D driver working on it. If you are interested of helping to get this done feel free to come to chat with me to Freenode IRC network on channels #mer and #nemomobile.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Setting up qt-components "devel environment"

I have been fighting myself a lot about how to start learning QML and contributing to QML/qt-components based application in Nemo Mobile. I tried to use qt-creator some time ago, but that didn't work out as I would have liked it to (read was not so simple that I would have though, as Nemo isn't official target). After discussing with some of the community developers decided to try out to just compile applications manually on my desktop env and then run apps on there and try what my modifications did and later package for the real environment. So here is what I finally did..

First I needed to install qt-development tools for the linux distribution I have currently installed, i.e., openSUSE 12.1. So I needed to install libqt4-devel package:
sudo zypper install libqt4-devel
Then it was time to get the qt-components, which can be found from gitorious. So get them from there and install:
git clone git://gitorious.org/qt-components/qt-components.git
cd qt-components
./configure -meego
sudo make install
cd ..
Then it was time to get themes working for the qt-components. For this I installed first the base theme called meegotouch-theme:
git clone git://gitorious.org/meegotouch/meegotouch-theme.git
cd meegotouch-theme
sudo make install
cd ..
And then I installed the actual theme. For this I used the default theme that is provided also in Nemo Mobile called meego-handset-theme-darko:
git clone https://github.com/jpavelek/meego-handset-theme-darko.git
cd meego-handset-theme-darko
sudo mkdir /usr/share/themes/darko
sudo cp -r meegotouch/ index.theme /usr/share/themes/darko/
sudo cp -r blanco/ /usr/share/themes/
# Blanco has links to meegotouch which we add from darko theme
sudo ln -s darko/meegotouch /usr/share/themes/meegotouch
cd ..

And finally I took one of the qt-components/qml based applications that is in Nemo to try out my configuration
git clone https://github.com/nemomobile/qmlfilemuncher.git
cd qmlfilemuncher
After this I had the QML/qt-components application running without any problems. So time to start learning more QML, fixing bugs and implementing features. :) Of course this doesn't include yet all the libraries and API's use in Nemo Mobile, but it is a start.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Tizen Developer Conference Day 3

Similar to the day 2 the third day started with a breakfast at the Atrium level and was in my opinion very good as well. After the breakfast I headed to the street level to get the giweaway present, i.e., Tizen Developer Device that was presented yesterday during the keynote given by the two Tizen TSG members Imad and Jong-Deok.

After getting the device it was of course time to check the content which was pretty basics, the device itself, micro usb cable, charger, which was surprisingly with a euro plug instead of US plug and a converter from euro plug to US wall socket. Also a cleaning "thingy" and 4G USB memory stick with SDK files inside were provided.

After unpacking and booting and testing the device a bit I headed towards the talk rooms to get some more information about the happenings around Tizen.

First talk of the day that I went to listen was "Developer Highlight Presentations: HTML5 Apps Development for Tizen Devices" which was a bit hard to follow probably mainly as the jetlag still prevented me from sleeping enough and I still wasn't awake really. :P

Next went to listen "HTML5 Canvas vs CSS3" presentation which was quite interesting and after the presentation listener had a better understanding about the differences. Also I was interested about the demos shown and how capable CSS3 actually is.

And of course one needs to eat as well, so went for a lunch in the Atrium level a bit after noon. Food was good as usual.

As a last talk I went to listen "Enabling Gordova (aka PhoneGap)" talk by Rene Pourtier.

The final part of the event for me was the Tizen SDK Hands-on session which was very nice session and gave very detailed and quick introduction to the different features of the SDK. The session consisted of three different parts, first part was how to use the SDK itself and how to get started of creating application with a template and how to run the applciation in the emulator. Second part was about how to use the debug functions within the SDK.

And the last part was a QA session with the SDK development team. There were many questions from the community about the SDK. However, there was one thing that bothered me and that was one person who kept "asking questions" and talking about many other things also than the Tizen SDK. Much good time from others was wasted with this non SDK related talker.

That was it, the conference is over. I had a lot of fun and got reasonable amount of information about the current status of Tizen and how to start hacking. It was also very nice to see the community and connect to others that are working with similar things. So thanks to Linux Foundation, Intel, Samsung and other sponsors that made this event a success.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Tizen Developer Conference Day 2

I started my second day at the Tizen Conference by having a quite nice breakfast on the morning with some familiar faces. When enough energy was collected from the provided substances it was time to join to the Ballroom for the first keynote of the day. The first keynote was kept by the members of the Tizen Technical Steering Group members Imad Sousou from Intel and Jong-Deok Choi from Samsung, which was moved to this position from yesterday.

During the keynote there was couple of nice demos shown and some of the tizen features were described. The presentation itself gave very nice picture what is the status of Tizen in the handset type of devices. When the presentation was closing its end the audience got a nice surprise (well, it was sort of told in the registration as well so not really a surprise in the end), which was that every registered attendee would be given a Tizen Developer Device as a giweaway. The device hardware was presented as Dual Core ARM Cortex A9 1.2, 1G of RAM, 16G of Memory, GPS, WiFi, 8mpix camera etc. which was quite nice in the specs.

The device itself looked very much like the devices that the showcase presenters had already shown yesterday and I would guess that the device is the same. Too bad it is a bit bulky design and a bit large thus using it as a everyday device isn't really feasible, which is a bit of lost opportunity in my opinion as there was lot of devices given out for developer that could possibly use the device as everyday device and give much feedback.

After the keynote was over my feelings about Tizen was much more positive and I really was surprised even more that why this presentation was not given as the first one on day 1 as originally scheduled. It would have given much more positive feeling about the Tizen. Only thing that I was really especting in addition to the keynote was QA session with the TSG. Anyway thanks to Imad and Jong-Deok of the nice overview of the Tizen and live demos.

After the TSG it was time for Dr. Nagata from DOCOMO project to give a presentation, which was followed by James Pearce from facebook. After this all the keynotes of the conference were done.

Tech Showcase and lunch followed the series of keynotes and the talks in five different tracks started. I selected which presentations mainly based on my own interest and went to listen the following ones. First Tizen Architecture by Sunil Saxena and Vincent Kwon and as usual with these architecture talks the room was full of people and some of us had to stand.

After the architecture presentation it was time to change room to Bayview. In Bayview I listened to "Engaging Open Source Projects, with a Corporate View" by Thiago Macieira and "Upcoming Technologies: Wayland and oFono" presentations by Jesse Barnes and Marcel Holtmann.

In the beginning of oFono presentation Marcel announced that it has been about 3 years today from the beginning of oFono and they wanted to celebrate their anniversary and cake as well as t-shirts were provided to the audience.

After the Marcel's ~20min presentation about oFono, Jessa talked about Wayland in the same slot, which ended also my visit to the rooms in the "middle floor" and it was time to go back to the Ballroom A again to listen the Orange presentation "Lessons Learnt from Orange in Developing HTML5 Application for Tizen".

When the talk by Orange ended it was time for the evening events and first there were snacks and drinks available in the showroom area where the companies were again showing their work around Tizen. Also another ultrabook lottery was done and one lucky attendee got a brand new device to play with.

After the lottery it was time to move to the buss and towards California Academy of Sciences for the evening event. In the evening event there was food, drinks and live music next to the natural history exhibition and planetarium.

After the evening event it was time for a game of Werewolf hosted by Dawn (thanks for this again) at the hacker lounge.

... and then it was time to start preparing for the third and the last day of the conference....