chicken.photos / about

Marcel the Rooster posing with the chicken.photos setup

Who made this?

The project was created by Jacob Bijani and Noah Kalina at the request of Marcel the Rooster.

How does this work?

The system consists of a Canon 7D, a speed flash, a Raspberry Pi, and an ultrasonic motion trigger.

Whenever a chicken passes in front of the motion sensor, the Pi snaps a photo on the camera, which in turn fires the speed flash. Once the photo is taken, the Pi downloads the photo from the camera’s SD card and uploads it to our website. The photo is then tweeted and potentially minted as an NFT.

Everything is protected in waterproof housing and uses custom designed PCBs for power and signal routing between the components. It uses the gphoto2 library to interact with the camera, and CircuitPython for the firmware on the Pi.

How are the NFTs minted?

We use OpenZeppelin Defender to automatically mint the photos as they are published. The collection is powered by an ERC721 contract, which delegates minting authority to a Defender Relay.

Once the photos are minted, the Relay makes the NFT available for sale using the Zora V3 Asks Module.

Are these chicken selfies?

Yes. The chickens are using an input device (the motion sensor) to invoke a computer function (the capture method on the Pi), which invokes a series of events that results in the photo being taken, uploaded, and shared.

This is identical to a human using an input device (tapping a button) to invoke a computer function (the post method on Instagram), which invokes a series of events that results in the photo being taken, uploaded, and shared.

How many chickens are there?

There are thirteen hens, six chicks, and two roosters.

What’s the difference between a hen and a rooster?

A hen is a female chicken. Hens lay eggs. A rooster is a male chicken. The purpose of a rooster is to yell at the top of its lungs all day and prevent the humans from sleeping past sunrise. A hen naturally lays eggs and does not require a rooster to lay.

What kind of chickens are those?

Marcel the Rooster is a Speckled Sussex. Stompers is a Dark Brahma. The hens are Salmon Faverolles (5), Dark Brahmas (4), Wyandottes (3) and (1) Salmon Faverolle/Speckled Sussex mixes (aka mutt). As of June 29, 2022, (6) Silkies have been added to the flock.

Are these free-range chickens?

Yes, these chickens are not cooped up. They are free to roam anywhere on Noah’s property. They do have a coop they sleep in at night which is locked and safe from predators.

Do the chickens lay eggs?

Yes. They are the best fresh eggs you’ve ever tasted. They are available for $20 each. Pick up only.

Will the camera move?

Yes, Marcel, will move the camera periodically to change the composition.

Will there be animals that aren’t chickens?

Yes. The camera was designed to be executed by chickens, but other animals can take their own pictures if they like.

How many photos will there be?

We are thinking about this seasonally. The camera only takes photos when a chicken walks in front of it, so it’s impossible to predict how many total photos the chickens will make. We hope the chickens are able to mint at least one photo a day until autumn. From a technical perspective, collection has an uncapped total supply.

Once a day the flock curates a selection of the best photos from the day. The chickens believe in a healthy and sustainable work environment, and because of that they refuse to set unrealistic expectations as to when the photos will be posted.

All photos will be published to this website, as well as the @chickens Twitter account. Not every photo that is published will be minted. You can view all NFTs on Zora.

When will the photos be minted?

The chickens live in the country, dislike capitalism and don't really get the whole "crypto" thing. As a result, they will mint select photos as NFTs at totally random and unpredictable times. Set a twitter alert to be first to know about new uploads.

Are the photos posted in chronological order?

No. These are chickens. They are a bit disorganized, but the date and time each photo was made is labeled at the bottom right of every photo (YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS)