For those of you following the saga, this is my 2nd attempt at putting a notebook computer into a picture frame to displaying a gallery of digital photos.
The first attempt was tragically abandoned after I accidentally severed a proprietary hard drive ribbon on a Toshiba Tecra.
Fortunately, this provided the excuse to continue the project using my backup laptop, a 14″ WiFi enabled Winbook C140.
Go ahead and upload some of your photos!
- Notebook computer: Donated…thanks Jenny!
- Box Frame: $20
- Framing Matte: $5
- Foam Core: $2
- Wood for Bracing: $5
- Wire Grille for air duct: $3
- USB Cable: Spare part
- Squeeze XP onto an old 2G hard drive (this was so I could continue to use the Winbook’s 40G drive myself)
- Install Firefox and add shortcut to Windows startup menu
- Install Autohide extension (from the scariest website ever) to start Firefox in full screen
- Cut out picture frame matte and foam core backing
- Unplug notebook screen cables from laptop motherboard and remove notebook screen from plastic casing (see Img 1 below)
- Cut foam core to fit notebook screen and align with matte (see Img 2 below)
- Create brace in box fame to hold notebook in place (see Img 3 below)
- Drill holes in box frame for power cable, USB cable (so you can connect a keyboard in case you run into trouble later on)
- Put it all together.
…and just when you think you’re done…
Find out that your laptop cooling system was never designed to function the way you mounted it causing your picture frame to overheat and shut down after 20 minutes.
- Test notebook cooling system to find out how to best dissipate heat
- Install Samsung’s Magic Rotate and move mounting hardware to rotate frame and desktop 180°
- Drill ventilation holes and cut out a wire mesh cover
- Upload some pictures and enjoy
- Keep your notebook casing as intact as possible. If the pieces could be reconfigured smaller they really would have built it that way. Removing the CD-ROM, batteries, and speakers are probably all you need to worry about.
- Keep your drill away from your notebook. I noticed that drilling too close to the notebook tended to make it magnetic…not good!
- Pay attention to where the notebook vents are and make sure they stay at the top of the frame.
- Notebook screen cables are short and fragile, so be careful, and plan your notebooks final resting place accordingly.
The Upload Interface
Image uploading is pretty straightforward
- Upload images with php, resize to 1024×768 and add a thumbnail
- Save information to db row and images to file system.
I’ve got an idea for a similarly themed project but am out of superfluous notebooks, so if any of you have a spare notebook lying around (that is a pentium II or greater) please let me know!.
For some reason my digital camera had trouble picking up the color, but this gives you an idea of the finished piece.
[Update] Apparently lots of folks have been receiving the ‘maximum file size exceeded’ error message after attempting to upload not so maximum jpg’s. The error was actually resulting from a lack of available memory on the server. I’ve tweaked the program to allocate additional memory (from 8mb to 96mb!) on the server which should resolve this issue.
[Update 2] The timeout for uploads has been updated to 120sec.