Autographer – wearable camera

Autographer is a wearable camera, one of the first that will be available to the public. You clip it to a bag, your shirt or wear in around your neck on an included lanyard, switch it on and away you go.

While it is on, it will take pictures of anything the in-built computer deems is noteworthy and it will continue to do so until you either switch it off or you fill the memory.

It has 8GB of internal storage so can take up to 28,000 images, and comes with three sensitivity settings: low, medium and high. These allow you to assign it to take more or less photos throughout the day depending on its in-built sensors. Manufacturer OMG quotes that an average day would result in around 2,000 images being taken, so you could, technically, leave it running for two weeks without transferring images to a computer.

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Autographer was developed by British company OMG Life, a wholly owned subsidiary of Oxford Metrics Group (OMG) plc, after licensing technology from Microsoft to create a medical memory aid called the Vicon Revue. The original product was released in October 2009 and was designed to capture the lives of patients with Alzheimer’s disease and other memory problems, so that their doctors could assess how many of the events the patients recalled. OMG reinvented the device as a consumer product based on feedback from customers who were using the technology for entertainment purposes

There are five sensors inside that combine to choose and take the best shots. A colour sensor perceives light and brightness, temperature is taken by the in-built thermometer, there is a magnetometer to determine which way the camera’s facing, a motion detector uses infrared light to sense moving objects, and an accelerometer determines the movement of the Autographer itself. These are all used by the camera’s brain to help it decide when to take a picture or not.

The lens is custom designed and built. An average smartphone lens has only a 60-degree wide angle, we were told by OMG, whereas the Autographer uses a glass hybrid wide-angle lens with a 136-degree field of view. This is important as when you wear it on a lapel you essentially want it to capture as much as is in front of you as possible, including above and below.

GPS technology is also built-in and can be used to tag images so that photographers can see exactly where the images were taken once they are downloaded.

The OMG Life Autographer has three capture rates: Low, which will mean images are recorded at around 50 per hour, Medium (around 100 images per hour) or High (around 200 images per hour). Alternatively, you can press the Action button once to trigger the camera to take a sequence of nine shots.

Operating the Autographer is straightforward. Press the Menu button to reveal the options and use the Action button to make the setting choices. In fact these are incredibly simple and straightforward. The first press of the Menu button reveals the percentage of power in the battery, the number of images stored and the percentage of the 8GB capacity used.

OMG Life Autographer review

The second press gives you the option to set the capture rate, and pressing the Action button while this is displayed enables you to toggle through the High, Medium and Low options.

Three presses of the Menu button brings up the Bluetooth connection option, and in this instance pressing the Action button turns the Bluetooth system on or off. Once it is turned on, the word ‘Seeking’ is shown in blue on the screen.

Four Menu button presses reaches the GPS system, five enables you to turn the sound on and off and six enables you to specify whether a blue ring displays on the screen when an image is captured.

OMG Life Autographer review


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