Raspberry PI comes with a custom really cool camera interface. http://www.raspberrypi.org/products/camera-module/3 It's basically a smart phone camera interface directly to the GPU and system. The camera connects to the Image System Pipeline (ISP) in the Raspberry Pi’s SoC, where the incoming camera data is processed and eventually converted to an image or video on the SD card (or other storage). The camera board requires 250mA to operate. (see my other update about power being the issue with corrupting my sdcards aka filesystem.) I did something likely worst, I found an old USB web cam sitting around. http://support.logitech.com/en_roeu/product/3056 like this one. an oldie but a goodie. I'm sure this pulls power from the USB, and only aggravated the power / noise / sd card death spiral. Basically, here's my first pic: Not a bad selfie, but certainly easier to use a smart phone, but considering this is a Carl Ziess lens, and $50 bucks worth of Raspberry PI junk, cheaper and more flexible than a dummy proof smart phone. So I pointed it out the window. Window shot, before the arctic blast has it. Wow. the grass is still green.