Bug crash report to Matlab trying to read a basic webcam

LOL!  When I clicked OK it failed because it could not read my email address.  I used mixed case, that is probably why it failed. Why do I even bother trying to help anyone. I can act in good faith and try to do my best to document something.  But the systems on the Internet and most software are of such poor quality and reliability – most (95%) fail.

Yep! The %&%&&%!! form only accepts lower case email addresses. At least I got to try again. The usual is for them to cancel, throw away my work and no apologies, seldom ever a thank you, and never never never is there any follow up to say what happens. So how do you think these kinds of practices and habits of all sites and groups on the web make people feel?  And who is going to complain first about someone else’s methods if they are inconveniences?  Oh well.  Why do I bother?  Because it is important for the Internet to have a way for people to share what they learn.

My level of cynicism is rather high today.  I was trying to use MatLab to read some of my USB webcams.  I have about 30 of them, I was studying noise and standards and other things.  But the first one I tried crashes trying to take a picture.  No details.  A form came up in MatLab and asked me to send the crash report.  Here it is:

I was trying to read my webcamera. In Live Editor there was an “Acquire camera image” function. I tried it.

I can read one camera, but not this one. It keeps timing out. I was looking for any clues as to why. It can see the camera. But trying to take a snapshot times out.

The camera is fine and works in other things. I use SharpCap for stacking and analysis. That camera works fine.

Your documentation is scattered all over. Rather tiresome. Young people might be happy to spend days looking and experiments to just get a basic webcam image. I wanted to actually use the data from the frames for something besides “eye candy”.

Hope you can figure it out. There do not seeem to be any tools on this for me to trace from my end. It is rather tedious “throw spagetti at the wall” for users. I am getting the hang of MatLab for many things. but it is ten times slower learning than it needs to be. You simply have not taken the time to clean up the many fragmented things that face users. You might know it but from the Internet side MatLab documentation is chaotic and ill-served.

This form has 6 pt characters and no promise to send me a copy. I am copying it to my personal log, so I have a record. The response rate for these kinds of forms on the Internet is only about 10%. And less than 1% ever have the courtesy to send the message text (and context) to the user mailbox.


Richard Collins, Director, The Internet Foundation

I tried the online version and my camera works there.  I wrote to ask for help finding which cameras are supported and how much I have to pay to not have to dig.  Maybe that is what is required.  Pay bribes to get things done?  When the United States was just colonies – every town and turnpike charged taxes and fees – whatever the traffic would bear. The country grew with uniform laws and regulations.  The Internet and software have no rules.  I would like to suggest that the industries self-regulate first.

I tried to use my webcam in Windows 7 and it crashed. It asked me to send a bug report. I did and it crashed because the programmer only looked at lowercase email addresses (mine is long and best written CamelCase.

I tried the online version to use the webcam. It worked for the camera that crashed in Windows. I know it is not my camera but the Windows software.

It seems to me that a company like MatLab should support all Windows devices by default.

I do have the webcam hardware support installed.

I just want to study statistics – not mess around with your software.

Do you support webcams? Which ones? Have you crippled the regular MatLab and only support camera by extra payments? If so, which package supports all cameras? If you don’t tell me and I will find something else.

I have been using MatLab more every day. It does some things well. Other things not so well or at all.

You have machine vision and you have image acquisition. Do they both support all image acquisition? Or is the a pyramid? I don’t want to keep finding limitations by stumbling into limitations. If there is a complete map, I can plan. I cannot afford to pay for all the packages you create. That is a losing battle for me.

Your online webcam tools are crippled (only support fixed resolution and no controls). You can get lots more people interested in better tools if you let them access basic exposure, brightness, gain, pan, tilt, zoom, frame rate, resolution. Being good at something is better than advertising. If I can get to cameras’ data easily then I can write algorithms. Make the hardware and data easy, then sell people tools. But I can suggest even better ways for you to grow — and serve global communities.

Richard Collins, Director, The Internet Foundation

Richard K Collins

About: Richard K Collins

Director, The Internet Foundation Studying formation and optimized collaboration of global communities. Applying the Internet to solve global problems and build sustainable communities. Internet policies, standards and best practices.

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