Category: Educational Aids

Barbara: the Talking AI Camera

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The Barbara: the Talking AI Camera is a Do It Yourself adaptation of a camera that captions what it sees designed for those individuals with learning and blind and low vision disabilities to create and use.

Technical Specifications: 

Step One: Camera

  • This camera is an AGFA Synchro Box from the 50's. Any camera/device will do, as long as a Raspberry Pi, Powerbank and Pi Camera fit inside.

Step Two: Electronics

  • The electronics are straightforward. To start off, set up the Pi and connect the Pi Camera. To power, connect the powerbank, the same way a user would with their phone.
  • When everything is wired up, start on the fiddly part, placing the camera. This project kept the shutter open and made sure it was aligned. This step takes some time.
  • All that remains is to plug in in the user’s headphones and make sure the Pi plays audio via the 3.5mm jack.

Step Three: Code

  • The code is tricky, but to make things easy, here is a high level overview:
  • Take a picture every second.
  • Check that the picture is mostly black (shutter is closed). If so, delete the picture
  • If not, send the picture to the AI API, receiving the caption back.
  • This caption is turned into an MP3 file, playing it via the headphones.

Step Four: Result

  • Now the user has a camera that doesn't take pictures, it only captions them.


Price Check
as of: 
Additional Pricing Notes: 
Do It Yourself.
Barbara: the Talking AI Camera