...get even. Some little scrote got a catapult for Christmas - and is now driving round the neighbourhood in the early hours of the morning firing stones through people's car windscreens.
Along with several of our neighbours, my wife's car had its rear screen shot through last night. Autoglass - the people who offer a 24/7 emergency service - can't possibly do anything about it until Tuesday. And Tesco insurance, who are never backwards in upping the premium, cheerfully inform us that there will be a £75 excess to pay - after half an hour hanging on the 0845 line being reminded how very important our call is to them.
The cops were more interested in any possible racial implications - what colour were we, did we think there might be a racial motive. Still, they filled in the forms very comprehensively with my wife's job title and date of birth. Cos that'll help. And our details will be passed to Victim Support. I expect they'll write her a nice letter. If only they put that much effort into patrolling the streets...
Anyhow, in the absence of any constructive help from the people funded by my taxes, I thought perhaps I could apply a bit of specialist shooting knowledge to the problem. After all, a couple of lowlifes in a hot hatch can't be so different from a marauding fox.
Don't panic, I'm not reaching for the .243, tempting though it might be. But I have set up the Deben ProStalk trail camera overlooking the front of the house.
And I'm wondering where best to wait up - in the bedroom overlooking the street (where it will be nice and warm), or in a vehicle down the road, where I'll get a better view of their numberplate.
Take on PC, installed with Linux. Put a video capture card into it (being sure to check on Linux forums to see that it is known to work) and attach a CCTV camera to it, with an auto-iris lens on it. Most modern CCTV cameras, especially the Sony Exview types, work excellently in streetlights.
Once this set-up is working, install a copy of the Motion CCTV monitor system onto the Linux PC, configure appropriately (I can supply a known-working config file if necessary) and set the unit to only register a movie if there're 3 frames of motion.
This system works very well for me.
If you still need a rear window call me the guy in deptford will fit a window for about the cost of your excess.
Hi guys, and thanks for the suggestions. Dr Dan, that sounds interesting - could be a good way of capturing some video of nocturnal wildlife too. Do you happen to know if it would work on an OSX Mac? That would reduce my initial outlay somewhat, as I have one already. James.
did you get the police to dust the stone for fingerprints? It's cold though so the little bugger were probably wearing gloves. Grrrrr. good luck with the camera!
The application homepage is here: http://www.lavrsen.dk/foswiki/bin/view/Motion/WebHome
There isn't a specific Mac OS/X download (the owner seems to prefer Linux systems) but there is a source code download; if you were to install the necessary C compiler for OS/X and work through solving the dependencies, you could get this working. Mac OS/X is really simply BSD Unix with a pretty front end, so it should work; the only question is how much mucking about is needed to make it work.
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