So I have a (experimental) website that I'm working on and one feature I'd like to add is the ability for one of my forms to load a (real-time, if possible) screen shot of any website that is entered. Currently I am using a third-party application called "ThumbShots" (http://www.thumbshots.com/) which does this task but is limited to a certain amount of executions per month for free. If I want more I have to pay $.
So I was wondering if anyone had a rough idea of a method to complete this task. For instance, how do you guys think ThumbShots does it? My initials thoughts are that it will probably be very taxing on my server (assuming that I get it to work). I currently am running this website on a shared server through DreamHost which will probably make this task even more difficult.
It'd be nice to find a solution that would work in my shared hosting environment but hypothetically if I were to have my own personally hosted server then what method would work best? Are there applications within linux that would be good for this sort of task?
TLDR: Assuming I'm on a shared server with DreamHost, can I automate the server taking screenshots of websites live? If I weren't on a shared server what would be the best method?