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Thanks for the memories  July 26, 2012

Designer sends hidden camera in the mail, records process

About The Author

CNET Editor

Michelle Starr is the tiger force at the core of all things. She also writes about cool stuff and apps as CNET Australia's Crave editor. But mostly the tiger force thing.

(Credit: Ruben van der Vleuten)

What happens in between mailing a package and its arrival at the destination? A Dutch designer posted a hidden camera to find out.

When you mail a package, where does it go? Who handles it? How many steps are there in the process of it leaving Point A and arriving at Point B? Everyone who has mailed a package has at some point at least idly wondered what happens to it after the post office takes responsibility of it — but not many have done something about it.

Industrial and interaction designer Ruben van der Vleuten in the Netherlands has. When his curiosity was piqued, he decided to mail himself a hidden camera to find out.

He packed a small camera into a box with a battery pack and an Arduino-controlled timer circuit and motion sensor. The camera peeked out of a small, 2-millimetre hole concealed in large black letters van der Vleuten had written on one side of the box.

A close-up of the camera hole.
(Credit: Ruben van der Vleuten)

The motion sensor detected when the box was moving and started recording continuously. When the box was stationary, the timer was set to record three seconds of footage every minute, to eliminate long stretches of time in which nothing happened.

The box then recorded its entire journey: from van der Vleuten taking it to the Post Danmark post office; the post office taking it to its distribution centre, where it was sorted for delivery; and finally, its trip from the distribution centre to ven der Vleuten's front door.

From A to B from Ruben van der Vleuten on Vimeo.


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JodyA posted a comment   
United States

was really interested in the last minutes, when the receiver takes it and opens it and the what? puts it aside, uses it? shows to some one?..i am more interested in the social aspect of commerce rather than tech, of efficiency of process

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