Raspberry Pi Art Frame Using OpenFrame

Digital picture frames were a fad awhile back, and you can still pick them up at the local big box store. [Ishac Bertran] and [Jonathan Wohl] decided to go open source with digital frames and create the openframe project. The open-source project uses a Raspberry Pi with WiFi and either an HDMI monitor or a monitor that the Pi can drive (e.g., a VGA with an HDMI adapter).

You are probably thinking: Why not just let the Pi display images? The benefit of openframe is you can remotely manage your frames at the openframe.io site. You can push images, websites (like Hackaday.com) or shaders out to any of your frames. You can also draw on public streams of artwork posted by other users.

Openframe doesn’t store any of your artwork. It simply retrieves it from a given URL on demand. [Ishac] shows how to convert an old monitor into something that looks like a high-end frame and it is easy to think of uses for this: schools, offices, or sending Mom pictures of the grandkids remotely. You can watch his video, below.

Repurposed monitors are nothing new. However openframe is an extensible open source project, and we are curious to see where it goes over time.

12 thoughts on “Raspberry Pi Art Frame Using OpenFrame

  1. The only problem I have with something like this is having an extra display run all day. I guess you could add a relay to the Pi to turn the monitor off at times when you’re not there, so at least save a bit of power.
    The project reminds me of http://electricobjects.com/, which does the same thing with a beautiful (custom?) display, but I always found them too expensive (around $400).
    I might give this one a try, if I can find a nice display.

  2. I agree.. Powering a traditional display all day and night I think would become quickly unappealing. However.. If color e-ink display technology every improves (or even using traditional b&w e-ink displays) where power is only used on display updates/refreshes, I can see having multiple of these around the house without the power meter guilt…

    1. power wise many smaller more effective screens require less than 5w, even led ligthbulbs can draw that amount.
      conserving energy is important in the modern world but we shouldn’t kid ourselves into thinking this is what will matter.
      turn down the temperature while washing your clothes a single time and you will probably have saved the same amount of energy over a year, now imagine doing it every time you wash.

  3. Is there anything like this for Android? Or could this be converted to an Android app? It’s appealing to have an open source web interface that is getting continual improvements.

    Great to see someone mentioned energy saving. Connecting a motion sensor to the screen would help with power savings.

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