Create a wearable video with Kdenlive

Conference Badge Operational Logistics

With the video finished, the rcp command-line program makes quick work of copying the video file over to the Raspberry Pi on the conference badge.

linuxnotebook% rcp \
  /home/rob/drtorq/nano-video.mp4 \

Once copied over, ssh is used to log in and run the video.

linuxnotebook% ssh pi@

You may have to install MPlayer and fbdev [6] on the Rasp Pi. Use Ctrl+C to halt MPlayer.

The following commands run the video with MPlayer:

pi-badge% cd
pi-badge% mplayer -nosound -loop 0 \
  -vo fbdev2:/dev/fb1 -x 160 -y 128 -zoom \
  -flip -vf rotate 1 /home/pi/nano-video.mp4

I added this command

mplayer -nosound -loop 0 \
  -vo fbdev2:/dev/fb1 -x 160 -y 128 -zoom \
  -flip -vf rotate 1 /home/pi/nano-video.mp4 &

to the rc.local file right before exit 0, so that MPlayer runs on bootup.

Wrap Up

Keep in mind that resolution, contrast, and brightness might make the video on the tiny LCD difficult to see [7]. Be sure to make text big and edgy enough, so it doesn't look washed out or fuzzy. Clips should be shot in reasonably high resolution with good lighting. You also might want to experiment with bright colors, because they will stand out on a small screen.

Finally, as you edit, occasionally copy the video over to the Rasp Pi and run MPlayer to check its appearance. There are noticeable differences between what shows up on the Kdenlive monitor screen (on the Linux notebook) and what appears on the Pi LCD screen. You can make adjustments for the best look.

Kdenlive is an easy-to-use Linux video editor that has a ton of effects and transitions, countless output formats, and a straightforward user interface. You can pull in clips, add audio, add still photography, and produce nice packages for your nano-display devices.

Wearables are hot, and now you know how to put videos on them, too.

The Author

Rob Reilly (aka Dr. Torq) is an independent technology consultant and speaker. He provides specialized expertise to individual clients and companies. He frequently presents talks on physical computing, nano-Linux machines, the DIY/maker movement and the tech media. Contact him at or +1- 407-718-3274.

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