Scanning Colors to Philips Hue

What is this?

color-scan grabs the dominant color(s) from images and passes the color(s) to Philips Hue lights. You can decide if you want to send the main color to a group of lights, or individual colors to individual lights. It also works with scanned photos, of course, or with any jpeg that you drop in the directory. You don’t actually need the scanner.

You can can decide whether you want the main dominant color on all your lights $color_mode = 'single';, or if you’d like to grab a palette of colors to send to individual bulbs $color_mode = 'multi';. The example in the video demonstrates using the “single” color mode.

How does it work?

When the process script is called, it grabs the latest image from a directory. Color Thief handles the color quantization and provides RGB colors. RGB is converted to the the xy color space, then sent to your Hue bridge.

Where can I get this?

Please fork it from GitHub!

How do the settings work?

$color_mode = 'multi'; // "multi" or "single"
// "multi" uses different colors for each light (defined in $light_ids), 
// "single" uses the most dominant color found in the image for a Hue group (defined in $group_id)

$light_ids = array( 1, 2, 3 ); 
// ids of your Hue lights that you want to use with color-scan
// Grab these from your bridge.

$brightness = 150;
// 0 - 255

$group_id = 0; 
// must be set  if using single color mode;
// Grab this from your bridge.

$path = "/path/to/your/images/";
// directory where you want to look for an image to process

$bridge = 'x.x.x.x'; 
// ip address of your internal bridge

$hue_key = 'hue-user'; 
// valid api user

//$debug = 'debug'; // uncomment this for some debug info

*Note: color-scan doesn’t handle registering a user on your bridge. You’ll need to handle that on your own.

How do I use this?

After adjusting the settings to fit your Hue setup, drop a jpeg in the directory you defined in $path. Then run process.php.

Why did you make this (totally useless) thing?

For fun, of course! I wanted to build something that would allow me to scan an image (or a piece of paper with some color) and have my lights change to match the dominant color(s) in the scanned image with the press of a button.

I pulled that all together with color-scan + the addition of a folder action in OS X that runs process.php when a new file is added to the directory I defined in $path. I have a profile in the Fujitsu settings that dumps new images in this directory, so it’s all triggered by pressing the button on my scanner.

'OS X Folder Action setup'

Can’t you already do this with digital images and the Hue app?

Yes. But I just got this fancy new scanner and I wanted to hook it up to my light bulbs!



color-scan is MIT licensed.

Color Thief has it’s own license, so check here and here.

Want more Hue?

Here’s an earlier post about using voice commands and weather data to control these lights.