OK I succeeded in my first pulse measurement using the webcam. I first collected the pulse by placing the webcam under my thumb, then I calculated the mean of each frame using python and PIL (frame extraction through MPlayer). Afterwards I implemented an high pass filter of 0.5Hz and Wala! Most of the work was done in python. The video was captured through Photo Booth and plotting was done using excel. I plan on consolidating all this into processing. My design specifications are ready too.
I shined a light through my thumb today in the morning and found that I could see the pulse. So I used my webcam to try and pick up my pulse. I have not been very successful due the other sources of interference. But am coming closer to success.
I have begun work on a new light based transducer for my project. Hope this will work better using the Everlight PT204-6B phototransistor and an LM 325 op-amp.
Today I spent a lot of time debugging my device and found out that my device is not functional. I realized that I made a mistake in reading the schematics and placed the stuff that was meant to be on pin number 5 on pin number 8. After fixing this I still find that the device is not working. I troubleshoot the piezo-electric film and find that its working, so I use an audio-jack as a wave-form generator and oscilloscope. I also found that I will need a capacitor to bypass the ports one and eight to get the required output for pulse. At the end of all the troubleshooting I find that my Op-amp is fried.