The history and evolution of camera can be traced back to the days prior to introduction of photography. Starting from obscura, this camera concept has been seeing technological upgrades through generations under names such as daguerreotypes, calotypes, dry plates, film and digital cameras.
Earlier, cameras were room-size big which were later reduced to be small and portable in 1685.
Obscura camera, at the beginning used pinhole or lens to project images of the objects.
Daguerreotypes: In 1837, Louis Daguerre made the first photographic method in which he treated a silver-coated sheet of copper with iodine vapor to give it a coating of light-sensitive silver iodide. Henry Fox perfected another process called calotype. Both processes used very simple cameras consisting of two nested boxes.
Dry plates: Using day light, and fast plate or film, a small hand-held camera came to be used.
First starting with paper film, and then by celluloid in 1889, Eastman made Kodak, the first box camera for sale with a fixed focus lens and a single shutter speed. The use of 35mm film was introduced during 1905-1913
Compact SLR used 127 roll film in 1933.
Instant cameras of 1948 gave finished positive prints from the exposed negatives within a minute.
1960 saw introduction of automation which features automatic exposure and light meters.
Digital camera do not use film, but capture and save photographs on digital memory cards.