Memoto Camera Logs Your Life

Miniature camera clipped onto shirt

From MIT Technology Review:


Logging Life with a Lapel Camera

A startup believes people will want a photographic record of their lives, taken at 30-second intervals.

“We want to provide people with a perfect photographic memory,” says Martin Källström, CEO of Memoto. His startup is creating a tiny clip-on camera that takes a picture every 30 seconds, capturing whatever you are looking at, and then applies algorithms to the resulting mountain of images to find the most interesting ones.

Just 36 by 36 by 9 millimeters, the inconspicuous plastic camera has a lot crammed inside. The most important component is a five-megapixel image sensor originally designed for mobile phones. An ARM 9 processor running Linux powers a program that wakes the device twice a minute; takes a picture and a reading from the GPS sensor, accelerometer, and magnetometer; and promptly puts the device back to sleep.

Later, when you get home, you plug the camera into a computer to download the pictures. If you like, the process stops here, but if you subscribe to the company’s cloud storage service, things get more interesting. The pictures are fed through an image-processing algorithm that starts to sort out the events in your day. The images are clustered by their predominant colors, and then “we get a diagram of how varied the colors are over the day,” says Källström, whose 17-person company is based in Linköping, Sweden.