Auto documentation station

From Counter Culture Labs

The Auto Documentation Station is a low cost, one-button, open source, high definition video and audio live streaming and/or recording system that anyone can build.

NOTE: This project has not been completed. Some of the below is aspirational.

There are three versions

These devices will have the following abilities:

  • Real-time display on monitor or projector for sharing with those physically present
  • One-button online video streaming in 1080p
  • One-button private recording (for keeping an experiment log or for later editing and sharing)
  • One-button photography

They are all based on the raspberry pi and raspberry pi camera. The reason for that is that it is the only really low cost system that can both run a real linux distribution and do real-time high definition encoding.


The millidoc is close to ready. It is running a read-only version of raspbian (so pulling the plug won't break it). It needs a bit more software work for recording and streaming to work and the one-click button needs to be wired up.

The other systems are based on the millidoc, so very little needs

to change. The microscope version needs a mount to attach the raspberry
pi camera to the microscope. A 3D printable prototype of this mount is 

being tested and tweaked. The lab table mountable version uses a wide angle lens and is attached to a slightly modified <a rel="nofollow" class="external text" href="">Ikea Tertial</a>

architect's lamp with the lamp-part replaced with the raspberry pi and 

camera. The lab table mountable version has a built-in 6" LCD so it isn't too obtrusive on the table but still lets the user see what is being recorded/streamed. This version will likely need a different type of microphone to pick up a speaker who might be somewhat far away from the camera. For this one we'll probably use a Blue Snowball iCE Condenser Cardiod Microphone. They're around $50 but skimping on sound is never a good idea and good microphones are hard to find cheap.