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Tag Archives: Webcam.

Wireless Webcam

Thanko Wireless Webcam (Image courtesy Geek Stuff 4 U)
By Andrew Liszewski

I’m not going to postulate what manner of web activities require a webcam that’s not embedded into a laptop’s screen or even tethered to a USB cable, but suffice to say this wireless webcam from Thanko comes with minimal restrictions. The 2.4GHz signal is apparently only capable of transmitting a 320×240 image @ 15fps, though it does have a decent wireless range of about 32 feet. Its battery is rechargeable via a miniUSB connection on the back of the camera, and on a single charge you can expect to get about 5 hours of use. Geek Stuff 4 U is selling it for ~$103, though it won’t actually be available until the end of April.

[ Thanko Wireless Webcam ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]

Live3D Gives Google Earth Live Updates, Adds Potential For Creepiness

By Evan Ackerman

Google Earth lets you view the entire world. It’s sweet. But most of the time, you’re viewing the entire world as it was a year ago or more. If you’ve played with Google Earth, the first thing you probably did was go find your house. The second thing you probably did was go find your ex-girlfriend’s house and then get really disappointed when you couldn’t actually peek in the windows.

Now you can! (Maybe.)

A project called Live3D, brought to you by the Media and Machines lab of Washington University in St. Louis, takes live webcam images and overlays them on Google Earth. This is something that you could do before, but Live3D makes it fast and easy and integrates the images onto Google Earth’s 3D models. There’s a database of live webcam images, and it’s super easy to add your own via drag ‘n drop tools in Google Earth itself. So as long as there’s a webcam operating in the area, you get a constantly updating view of whatever the webcam sees (in stills, not video yet). Cars driving, people walking, everything, with a level of detail limited only by the resolution of the webcam.

Of course, this brings up all kinds of potential privacy issues, since you can set a webcam up wherever you want and have it pointed wherever you want and make the image accessible on Google Earth. People have always been able to do this, but somehow when it’s easy, it tends to become a problem.

[ Live3D ] VIA [ New Scientist ]

Point Grey To Demonstrate USB 3.0 Webcam At IDF

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By David Ponce

Albeit slowly, things are starting to shake up a little bit for SupoerSpeed USB 3.0. The technology we talked about twice before is a vast improvement over USB 2.0 in terms of speed, which increases tenfold to a theoretical 4.8Gbit/s. While there aren’t many consumer electronics around that take advantage of the new specification, Point Grey will be showing off at IDF next week a webcam with a 3MP Sony IMX036 CMOS sensor that will allow it to unload 1080p uncompressed video footage at 60fps. This transfers processing duties to the PC and allows for better facial recognition capabilities, among other presumably good things to come out of the use of this higher bandwidth.

No idea on price or availability on this yet, but like all things new, it’s probably better to not even ask.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Xataka ]

Hercules Announces New 720p Webcam

Hercules-HD720p

By Chris Scott Barr

I recall just a few short years ago that webcams were these little balls that sat on your desk and recorded fuzzy video at low frame rates. They weren’t really good for much, other than choppy video conversations with long-distance friends thanks to slow internet connections. However, with faster internet speeds, and the immense popularity of YouTube, webcams are quickly catching up with the times. This new Dualpix HD 720p cam from Hercules would be one such device.

The Dualpix HD 720p is one of the latest webcams to offer full 720p HD resolution to the average consumer. Hercules is targeting the notebook crowd with its small size, secure attachment system and a pair of rotational axes. The rotational axes would be a nice addition, allowing you to place it on either the side or top of your screen without shooting video on its side. If you’re looking for technical specs, hit the jump to check them out.

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Microsoft’s LifeCam Bumped To 720P – Now Dubbed The ‘Cinema’

Microsoft LifeCam Cinema (Image courtesy Pocket-lint)
By Andrew Liszewski

Yesterday Microsoft announced a new version of their LifeCam webcam known as the Cinema which boasts an ‘HD’ resolution of 720P, or 1280×720 at 30fps. With a price tag of $79.99 it’s definitely not the discount bin webcam you’ll find at your local computer shop, but for that money you get an aluminum housing, a real glass lens that’s harder to scratch than plastic, auto focus, a noise-cancelling mic and a Windows Live call button making it extra friendly with Windows Live Messenger.

And since HD video does require a bit of horsepower, the minimum requirements for the LifeCam Cinema is a dual core 1.6GHz processor system, though they recommend 3GHz, and 2GB of memory. But since it’s not scheduled to hit store shelves until September 9th, you’ve got plenty of time to upgrade.

[ Pocket-lint – Microsoft LifeCam Cinema goes 720p ] VIA [ SlashGear ]

Spiderman Webcam for the Comic Book Geek

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By Shane McGlaun

There are all sorts of geeks in the world from the computer geek to the plain ol’ geek. Perhaps the worst type of geek, a geek even the computer geek laughs at, are comic book geeks. You know the type, 35 years old and they own every Spiderman toy ever made and are proud of it. I know one dude that qualifies for the comic book geek of legend award, he combs his hair like Wolverine. I won’t name names, you know who you are.

Dream Cheeky has a new product that will let the computer/comic book geek meld their two sources of geekiness — the Spiderman USB Spider Webcam. The webcam looks like the old film camera Peter Parker used to take snaps of Spiderman complete with film containing action shots of the web-slinger in action sticking out the side of the camera.

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Ecamm BT-1 Bluetooth Webcam For Macs

Ecamm BT-1 Wireless Webcam (Image courtesy Ecamm)
By Andrew Liszewski

On one hand, having a webcam embedded just above your MacBook or iMac’s screen can be quite handy, since it never goes missing and it’s one less thing cluttering up your desk. But on the other hand, it really limits where that webcam can be pointed. Now there are probably hundreds of different webcams on the market that could easily solve this problem, but what sets the BT-1 apart is that it’s completely wireless, relying on Blueooth to transmit the video signals to your Mac.

So not only is the BT-1 completely flexible when it comes to where the webcam can be pointed, but the 10-30 foot wireless range is way more convenient that carrying 10-30 feet of USB cable. Now the 640×480 resolution of the BT-1 isn’t amazing, but it does encode the video using H.264 with 48kHz AAC stereo audio, so the compression shouldn’t be that bad. And given it’s completely wireless, you’ll have to keep in mind it does have a limited battery life of about 4 hours.

The BT-1 Wireless Webcam is expected to be available in late March (OS X only) for $149.99, but you can pre-order one now if you think it’s a must-have.

[ Ecamm BT-1 Wireless Webcam ] VIA [ Gear Live ]

Motion Tracking Web Camera

The Motion Tracking Web Camera (Image courtesy Hammacher Schlemmer)
By Andrew Liszewski

Under the right circumstances, I’m sure this motion tracking web camera could be handy for catching something in the act, but if you’re buying one with the hopes of foiling a burglary attempt or some other nefarious crime, you’ll probably be out of luck. It’s capable of capturing 640×480 videos at 30 frames per second which can be streamed and monitored remotely over the internet, and when motion is detected, the camera is able to pan 180° and tilt up to 60° in order to automatically track the moving object. And in the event something is detected, the included software can be set to send you a notification email allowing you to immediately check the video feed and even take manual control of the camera.

But in order for it to work you’ll need to leave your PC or laptop running with the camera connected, and odds are that’ll be the first target a would-be thief would go for. So unless you’re lucky enough to see the perp before they grab your hardware, your $89.95 investment might not be so worthwhile.

[ The Motion Tracking Web Camera ] VIA [ Gear Live ]

It’s Me(Or You) In 3-D

By Jonathan Kimak

Lord knows there have been many times where I have felt the urge to somehow reach into my monitor and smack the person I’m talking to through their screen. And aside from really smacking someone this webcam is the next best thing(it also won’t get you brought up on assault charges).

The Minoru webcam captures photos and videos in 3-D. It can be used with Internet Messenger programs like Windows Live Messenger. The Minoru uses two lenses to capture your image in 3-D. In order to see the 3-D image though, your chat partner has to wear those dorky blue and red paper glasses.

So while you will see each other in 3-D, you’ll look rather silly. $100 price tag and it comes out in December.

[ Minoru 3D Webcam VIA [ Ubergizmo ]