Introduction and a question about bug support.


#1

Hi This is my first post.
My name is David
I’ve recently bought a Theta V and am loving it. I am a full time artist and this little camera is super fun to play with.
I look forward to getting into plug-in development but I currently am playing around with the things that don’t take so much programming and just getting to know the camera and it’s abilities.

I have a few requests and have found at least one bug that I can recreate on the theta shooting app for iphone.
Where should I direct these comments and suggestions?
Does the community board speak directly with Ricoh or should I send this info directly to their team?
I’ve been watching some of the youtube coverage provided by Craig and am excited to help out once I get the API and SDK stuff installed and running smoothly.

For now I will just put my ideas and knows issues up here in case someone has the programming skills to jump on the ideas or the fixes…

First the issue/bug I have found pertains to triggering a shot via the volume up on ios app
Every time I use [volume up] to take a photo it breaks the shutter operation for volume up until i use the volume down button.
this same bug doesn’t happen on the ipad (maybe someone can check on their iphone as i only have the Iphone 6s running 12.0.1)

This is a pain because I am trying to use a bluetooth remote to trigger the camera and it only works once, until you press volume down.
I am using a cheap bluetooth shutter I had laying around. I saw Craig’s video on using the Mesh IOT button but those things are way overpriced. I thought I would try this route and it almost works except for this strange bug.

How easy would it be to have a plug in like the Mesh IOT plugin that uses the cheaper bluetooth devices like this one I’m using? It would need only to intercept the bluetooth command, The device has two buttons. One labelled iOS and one labeled Android.
You can find them easily on the internet by searching bluetooth shutter remote, mine even says Camera 360 and I’ve had it sitting in a box for a coupe years.

If each button could be mapped individually even the better!

My other question is Why on the PC app are the only options to sign into theta360.com with facebook and twitter.
I prefer not to use either of those to access third party sites. Can’t we login with the theta registered email??

I have a few ideas for plugins.wondering is anyone in the theta dev community taking programming ideas on?

finally I bought the Underwater housing and am wondering how people are editing the video for best stitching when inside the housing? I’ve noticed the stitching isn’t perfect when using the iphone app. I haven’t tried the pc app yet but hopefully it will handle the stitching better?

Thanks and look forward to this great camera getting even better.


#2

Welcome.

@jcasman can summarize and prioritize community feedback for submission to the THETA Product Manager at RICOH.

The bluetooth API is documented, but doesn’t come with detailed examples. A better strategy is to find an existing Android App that works with a bluetooth shutter and see if it works without modification. The Android app that came with your low-cost bluetooth trigger may work with on the THETA V without modification if it doesn’t work a user to press a button after the app starts. See some tests below with unmodified Android apps. To put a standard Android App, select it as the default plug-in using the desktop app, then put the camera into plug-in mode with the lower mode button.

It was for privacy protection in some countries. There are restrictions with collecting and handling email addresses in some countries. Instead of managing the protection of the email addresses with the regulations in each country for the viewer app, Ricoh decided to use third-party log-in apps at the time the viewer was built. Other people have reported on this problem of not wanting to use Twitter or Facebook. @jcasman sent this feedback to Ricoh.

Post them on this forum. I think developers are always looking for ideas from photographers and artists.

I have the underwater housing, but haven’t used it extensively yet. I am planning on stitching the video inside the camera at the time I take the video and then Premiere Pro for editing. I have not tested this workflow yet.


#3

Hi @davepc,

Welcome to theta360.guide! I think @codetricity covered a lot of your questions and comments, but just adding 2 more things:

  1. I am going to point out your post to the RICOH THETA product manager - If you want to add details on the bug you’re dealing with, you can just add it here or DM me @jcasman, whichever works better for you.
  2. Please do post your ideas for programming projects here. Connecting people is part of the advantage of having a public forum.

Looking forward to interacting more!

Jesse


#4

Thanks Craig and Jesse
I will play around with the developer mode this week and see if I can find an android app to port this trigger onto the Theta.

I will also put some thoughts together and make a wish list of ideas to share for development.

I suppose not having access to theta360.com isn’t crucial, if I decide to check it out I will make a temp FB account.

I appreciate the feedback, I will post my findings when I discover more about this trigger.

I ran a test of the stitching of one water housing video via the phone app and found the stitching lines were not aligned, a double image was visible at the stitch line that clearly showed the same part of the image side by side. Yet from the same shooting situation I took a photo and the stitching from the app was nearly perfect.
Without running more tests it would appear that the photo stitching might be more reliable than the video stitching. I was able to get the video aligned in Magix movie edit pro but after watching it render 4k for over an hour I cancelled it, deciding I should preform the tests at 1080p to save myself time.

I will run some more tests and publish my results
I look forward to reading the forum and contributing what I can.


#5

Thank you for this help. I have found an article in Japanese that explains how to use the Bluetooth API for shooting. The article makes it seem easy, but I haven’t tried it yet. I’m going to translate the article today, then try it myself in the future.

I talk to an aquatic biologist regularly who is using 360 cameras to document scientific survey sites underwater along the California coast. They are using 4K video and images. I’ll talk to him and get more information. The last note I had from him about 3 weeks ago indicated that he was looking to buy a specialized video workstation to process the video. I’m not sure if he’s stitching on the desktop, but I think he is.

The seas were a bit rough in California this past month and they didn’t have the opportunity to take good videos. Their main focus is to maintain sensor grids. The 360 video is for supplementary information.

If you don’t want to use the Twitter/Facebook login for theta360.com, you can use something like this:

or this:


#6

Thanks for the links Craig
I have found out that the remote shutter I’m trying to get connected is supposed to work seamlessly with the android camera api but although I have been able to pair it with the Theta within Vysor, Pressing the button on the shutter does nothing to the camera.
I see there is an option within developer options to dump bluetooth data, but I can’t yet locate the dump file to see if the remote is in fact passing data and perhaps the api isn’t set up to take the input.
I do also notice that although I can pair the shutter under bluetooth, when I then click options, I am unable to select the checkbox [use this device as an input]

My next step is to install an app from google play onto the theta but I can’t seem to find playstore app within Vysor.
So I will see how to get that app onto the theta, Any leads there would be appreciated.


#7

Google Playstore will not work on the THETA V. You will need to use a third-party store.

https://apkpure.com/remote-shutter-camera/net.vkrun.remote_shutter_camera

It may not work. However, if you find the challenge interesting as a hobby, the path forward is to try some apps on places like apkpure

It would be a good application to build, possibly finding an open source application to modify.


#8

Ok Great I’ll look into APKPURE
Much thanks, I do enjoy problem solving as a hobby so will see what I can make of it :slight_smile:


#9

I was successful in getting a few different apk onto the theta from APKPURE using ADB but right out of the box they didn’t have any effect on the theta itself. I looked through the apk code of one of the apps on android studio but without knowing what theta commands to place in the code I wouldn’t know where to start tweaking the code that appeared to control the buttons and bluetooth.
For the time involved it may make more sense to build something from scratch and hope for existing code to preform a simple relay to the theta shutter or just break down and buy a mesh IOT. Unfortunately I don’t have a background in android programming specifically so I’m not very proficient at it.


#10

If you’re interested in getting exposure to Android, @jcasman can send you this free course. Just send him a note. He’ll give you a code that you can use to login and take the course on a separate site called, “Eduonix”


#11

Dave, are you interested in access to the Android programming course? I know @codetricity has worked through a big chunk of it, has a pretty high opinion of the content. If it’s a help, I’d be happy to pass along a code for it. Just let me know.

Jesse


#12

I’ve gone through 41% of the course and am looking for people in this community to share updates with on the thread I shared earlier. I think we can motivate each other. My daughter has completed about 25% of the course. She’s fully completed the first “Portfolio” app and is going through the “Java Refresher” now.

Note that the article that I just posted about bluetooth isn’t relevant to this project as it uses, “Web Bluetooth”


#13

had a bad storm on the coast here in canada, Lost power for a couple days but things are getting back to normal. Will look into this more after the holidays :slight_smile:
Happy holidays!


#14

Merry Christmas! sorry to hear about the power loss. What part of Canada are you in? West Coast or East Coast?


#15

I am on the far west coast of Vancouver Island.


#16

@davepc note that @Svendus reported success using a generic bluetooth controller when he uses the following:

  • mobile phone
  • official ricoh mobile app (open on his phone)
  • generic bluetooth shutter clicker

The technique is:

  1. connect mobile phone to THETA
  2. open official RICOH mobile app for the THETA
  3. pair the generic bluetooth clicker to your mobile phone
  4. press the generic clicker. It should use the THETA mobile app to trigger the THETA image

I have not tried this technique myself, but am passing on the info in case it works for your workflow.


#17

Cool
Yes I was able to make the same connection, as I said in my original post I had the generic trigger working with the Theta V through the iphone but it had some errors and so I was hoping to connect directly via the plugin system.
But it hasn’t been something I’ve played with much since my initial testing.

I’ve been testing composition and am hoping to get out for some star photography when the weather cooperates.