Big Red Selfie Button

I’ve always wanted to make something with circuits that involved user interaction and social media. So the big red button idea evolved into an idea that satisfied people’s desire to press a shiny red button while also taking a picture that would then be uploaded to a website to be part of a “selfie mosaic”.

The Big Red Selfie Button is a small, portable photo booth. The box runs by a big red button sending a signal to a camera using a mini-computer called RaspberryPi. After the picture is taken, it is uploaded to, displays on the screen in the box, and alerts the next person it is ready to take another selfie when the light on the box turns green (or blue).

I used code cobbled together from several resources but a tutorial from Andy Ibbitson helped the most. The Adafruit and Raspberry Pi websites were very helpful too. My friend Carl Leonard translated the vision in my head into code and also helped with assembling the components via webcam all the way from Washington DC! I went from a relative noob to sudo-nanoing all over the place. The major setback for the project was getting the WiFi module to work on Cornell’s university-wide network RedRover. Attempting to troubleshoot this issue seriously delayed the project. The IT department helped me to discover that the WiFi worked but it would take an hour to upload each picture because connectivity with WiFi via Linux is abnormally slow.



More pictures from building it to the final product:


On a PC, drag your mouse from right to left to go to the next slide. On a touch screen mobile device, use your finger to swipe right to left.


The Big Red Selfie Button made during FSAD 1170 – Fashion Graphics was my most ambitious yet. The parameter of the project was to create a piece of work that embodies “desire”. After much thought I began to think about things that you want and couldn’t have but was compelled to have it anyway. Nothing exemplifies this mentality more than a big, shiny red button that says ‘Do Not Touch’. The big red button idea was also inspired by the episode ‘Space Madness‘ from the animated television series Ren and Stimpy. My professor thought it was a good idea but wanted more. More out of me is a bit dangerous because I have a limitless imagination and a determination to see things I imagine come to life. Ideally, I’d like to see this box on Ho Plaza facing the McGraw tower so everyone can enjoy it.

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