Using a PDA as a spy camera

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by johnw_94020, Jun 13, 2006.

  1. johnw_94020

    johnw_94020 Guest

    I used my Zire 72 recently with its limited 1.2 MP camera to capture
    some photos (secretely and discretely of coarse) that possibly might
    get a large corporation into some trouble. I also wanted to get some
    video, but the Zire 72's video camera is pathateic in low light rooms.
    I wanted to use my Kodak digital camera, or my video camera, but
    bringing in these will give me away.

    Hopefully the government will take action after they view the photos
    that I emailed. They look okay with the Zire, and okay when printed.
    Not crystal clear. Unfortunately I left my Zire on 320x240 photo mode.
    I think the images would have been clearer if shot at my normal
    640x480 mode. However what I sent should warrant an investigation.

    Has anyone else had experience doing this kind of thing? Obviously
    with some investigations, a normal digital or video camera will work.
    However I needed to take shots, and did not need anyone else finding
    out about them.

    johnw_94020, Jun 13, 2006
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  2. johnw_94020

    pailface88 Guest

    Exactly what is your question??
    pailface88, Jun 13, 2006
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  3. johnw_94020

    André Thoma Guest

    don't you think this guys is just trolling around?
    just my 2ct
    André Thoma, Jun 13, 2006
  4. Of course. That's why I set followups to an appropriate group.
    John McWilliams, Jun 13, 2006
  5. johnw_94020

    Helen Guest

    Looks like a question to me. Doesn't it to you?
    Helen, Jun 13, 2006
  6. johnw_94020

    xTenn Guest

    Well, if you have a Phone edition PPC with a data plan and camera (most do
    anymore) you can find several freebie apps that will allow you to use the
    phone as a remote web camera. May cost you a phone if you can't get back to
    recover it, but you can plant it, leave it on and have it update to a web
    site of your choosing. This instantly gets the photo, unattended, off of
    the property. I would suggest using an extended battery or a handy power
    feed, depending on the duration that you would need it to be live.

    xTenn, Jun 13, 2006
  7. johnw_94020

    johnw_94020 Guest

    But I have to wonder if the quality is good in low light. The problem
    with the photos from the Zire is they were in low light and the Zire
    lacks a flash. Does this PPC Phoen edition have a flash and at what MP?

    johnw_94020, Jun 14, 2006
  8. johnw_94020

    EarGuy Guest

    John DeLorean unavailable for comment.

    EarGuy, Jun 14, 2006
  9. johnw_94020

    Pat Guest

    My 11-year-old just got a camera that is sort of the size and shape of
    a disposable, but built into a box that looks like a juicebox -- for
    the discreet 11-year-old-spy-photos. Seriously, he did. It takes
    film, so you could throw some ASA 1600 or 3200 film in it and be pretty
    okay in reasonably low light. Plus you could leave it out in the open
    when you were spying on people. The cure for all of the world's ills:
    a juice box camera. At least when you are 11.
    Pat, Jun 14, 2006
  10. johnw_94020

    Paul J Gans Guest

    I agree.

    Nevertheless, there is an interesting question here. Many
    cities and towns are restricting photography of certain
    areas. For example in New York City there are signs posted
    saying that photography on the Brooklyn Bridge is illegal
    and I believe that it is illegal on the subway system as well.

    Do such restrictions on photography make any sense at all
    when I can use a PDA or camera phone without arousing any
    suspicion at all?

    Of course a real spy would have appropriate equipment. I'm
    sure that, for example, a Canon Elph could be dummied up to
    look like a cell phone.

    ---- Paul J. Gans
    Paul J Gans, Jun 14, 2006
  11. johnw_94020

    ASAAR Guest

    I don't know about bridges, but the subway photo restrictions were
    removed many months ago, and not stealthily. It was reported pretty
    extensively by the regular new media. If you want to make sure, try
    dialing Bloomie's 311 system for confirmation.

    It would be harder to notice people using PDAs or camera phones to
    take pictures in restricted areas, but if caught they might have
    more splainin' to do.
    ASAAR, Jun 14, 2006
  12. johnw_94020

    Paul J Gans Guest

    Thanks. I've checked. You are quite right.
    Not if the camera phone had already sent the images and you'd
    erased them. You know "No, officer, I was only trying to
    see if the 'missed call' icon was on my screen!"

    I have moderately big hands. I can almost palm my Canon SD450
    and take fairly hidden shots with it.

    ----- Paul J. Gans
    Paul J Gans, Jun 14, 2006
  13. johnw_94020

    Clint Guest

    FWIW, my Motorola V710 phone has a camera (1.3MP) and an LED light. If
    you're interested, I can try taking a picture of some documents in a
    low-light setting and e-mail you a couple.

    AFAIK, the UTStarcom 6700 (a true PocketPC) has a similar setup. It's not a
    flash so much as a light. Check here
    ( for a review and some
    sample pics.

    Clint, Jun 14, 2006
  14. johnw_94020

    ASAAR Guest

    Hey - unfair - unfair. That wasn't a camera phone, but a Canon
    Elph "dummied up to look like a cell phone." :) I suppose one of
    the new miniature Wi-Fi cameras could be used to send the images,
    and the pictures would also be much sharper than the typical camera
    phone could produce. Also, aren't there some gimmicky binoculars
    that have cameras built inside them?
    ASAAR, Jun 14, 2006
  15. johnw_94020

    Paul J Gans Guest


    I do not want to start any political wars, but I'd really
    like to be able to be law abiding *and* take pictures.
    The Brooklyn bridge is a neat place to take pictures *from*.

    ---- Paul J. Gans
    Paul J Gans, Jun 15, 2006
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