Serial Webcam Monitor 6 ((BETTER))
WebCam Monitor keeps watch over your home, office, or any location. This webcam surveillance software detects motion or noise, and triggers alerts that can record video and audio of the incident, notify you by e-mail or text message, or sound an audible alarm. It can also begin recording at pre-set intervals to maintain a record of events.
Serial Webcam Monitor 6
WebCam Monitor can automatically upload recorded video, audio, and photos to a server. Video can also be streamed live over the Internet, letting you monitor events from any computer with an Internet connection. Professional security features include automatic time-stamping of recorded video and photos. All monitored activity is displayed in an event log for quick reference. The Auto Delete function lets you keep a "last number of days" set of recordings and photos, without risking filling your hard disk and without having to manually track and delete files.
WebCam Monitor is a complete video security solution with multiple camera support and remote monitoring. WebCam Monitor goes far beyond traditional video security systems, with with an astounding combination of power and flexibility. It is the perfect way to turn your PC into a sophisticated video monitoring and surveillance system .
A webcam is a video camera which is designed to record or stream to a computer or computer network. They are primarily used in videotelephony, livestreaming and social media, and security. Webcams can be built-in computer hardware or peripheral devices, and are commonly connected to a device using USB or wireless protocols.
Webcams have been used on the Internet as early as 1993, and the first widespread commercial one became available in 1994. Early webcam usage on the Internet was primarily limited to stationary shots streamed to web sites. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, instant messaging clients added support for webcams, increasing their popularity in video conferencing. Computer manufacturers also started integrating webcams into laptop hardware. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic caused a shortage of webcams due to the increased number of people working from home.
First developed in 1991, a webcam was pointed at the Trojan Room coffee pot in the Cambridge University Computer Science Department (initially operating over a local network instead of the web). The camera was finally switched off on August 22, 2001. The final image captured by the camera can still be viewed at its homepage. The oldest continuously operating webcam, San Francisco State University's FogCam, has run since 1994 and is still operating as of October 2022. It updates every 20 seconds.
The first widespread commercial webcam, the black-and-white QuickCam, entered the marketplace in 1994, created by the U.S. computer company Connectix. QuickCam was available in August 1994 for the Apple Macintosh, connecting via a serial port, at a cost of $100. Jon Garber, the designer of the device, had wanted to call it the "Mac-camera", but was overruled by Connectix's marketing department; a version with a PC-compatible parallel port and software for Microsoft Windows was launched in October 1995. The original QuickCam provided 320x240-pixel resolution with a grayscale depth of 16 shades at 60 frames per second, or 256 shades at 15 frames per second. These cam were tested on several Delta II launch using a variety of communication protocols including CDMA, TDMA, GSM and HF.
One of the most widely reported-on webcam sites was JenniCam, created in 1996, which allowed Internet users to observe the life of its namesake constantly, in the same vein as the reality TV series Big Brother, launched four years later. Other cameras are mounted overlooking bridges, public squares, and other public places, their output made available on a public web page in accordance with the original concept of a "webcam". Aggregator websites have also been created, providing thousands of live video streams or up-to-date still pictures, allowing users to find live video streams based on location or other criteria.
In the late 1990s, Microsoft NetMeeting was the only videoconferencing software on PC in widespread use, making use of webcams. In the following years, instant messaging clients started adding webcam support: Yahoo Messenger introduced this with version 5.5 in 2002, allowing video calling in 20 frames per second using a webcam. MSN Messenger gained this in version 5.0 in 2003.
Around the turn of the 21st century, computer hardware manufacturers began building webcams directly into laptop and desktop screens, thus eliminating the need to use an external USB or FireWire camera. Gradually webcams came to be used more for telecommunications, or videotelephony, between two people, or among several people, than for offering a view on a Web page to an unknown public.
For less than US$100 in 2012, a three-dimensional space webcam became available, producing videos and photos in 3D anaglyph image with a resolution up to 1280 480 pixels. Both sender and receiver of the images must use 3D glasses to see the effect of three dimensional image.
Webcams are considered an essential accessory for remote work, mainly to compensate for lower quality video processing with the built-in camera of the average laptop. During the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a shortage of webcams. Most laptops before and during the pandemic were made with cameras capping out at 720p recording quality at best, compared to the industry standard of 1080p or 4K seen in smartphones and televisions from the same period. The backlog on new developments for built-in webcams is the result of a design flaw with laptops being too thin to support the 7mm camera modules to fit inside, instead resorting to 2.5mm. Also the camera components are more expensive and not a high level of demand for this feature, companies like Apple have not updated their webcams since 2012. Smartphones started to be used as a backup option or webcam replacement, with kits including lighting and tripods or downloadable apps.
Image sensors can be CMOS or CCD, the former being dominant for low-cost cameras, but CCD cameras do not necessarily outperform CMOS-based cameras in the low-price range. Most consumer webcams are capable of providing VGA-resolution video at a frame rate of 30 frames per second. Many newer devices can produce video in multi-megapixel resolutions, and a few can run at high frame rates such as the PlayStation Eye, which can produce 320240 video at 120 frames per second.
As webcams evolved simultaneously with display technologies, USB interface speeds and broadband internet speeds, the resolution went up from gradually from 320240, to 640480, and some now even offer 1280720 (aka 720p) or 19201080 (aka 1080p) resolution. Despite the low cost, the resolution offered as of 2019 is impressive, with now the low-end webcams offering resolutions of 720p, mid-range webcams offering 1080p resolution, and high-end webcams offering 4K resolution at 60 fps.
Various lenses are available, the most common in consumer-grade webcams being a plastic lens that can be manually moved in and out to focus the camera. Fixed-focus lenses, which have no provision for adjustment, are also available. As a camera system's depth of field is greater for small image formats and is greater for lenses with a large f-number (small aperture), the systems used in webcams have a sufficiently large depth of field that the use of a fixed-focus lens does not impact image sharpness to a great extent.
Webcams can come with different presets and fields of view. Individual users can make use of less than 90 horizontal FOV for home offices and live streaming. Webcams with as much as 360 horizontal FOV can be used for small- to medium-sized rooms (sometimes even large rooms). Depending on the users' purposes, webcams in the market can display the whole room or just the general vicinity.
As the bayer filter is proprietary, any webcam contains some built-in image processing, separate from compression. Digital video streams are represented by huge amounts of data, burdening its transmission (from the image sensor, where the data is continuously created) and storage alike. Most if not all cheap webcams come with built-in ASIC to do video compression in real-time.
Support electronics read the image from the sensor and transmit it to the host computer. The camera pictured to the right, for example, uses a Sonix SN9C101 to transmit its image over USB. Typically, each frame is transmitted uncompressed in RGB or YUV or compressed as JPEG. Some cameras, such as mobile-phone cameras, use a CMOS sensor with supporting electronics "on die", i.e. the sensor and the support electronics are built on a single silicon chip to save space and manufacturing costs. Most webcams feature built-in microphones to make video calling and videoconferencing more convenient.
Typical interfaces used by articles marketed as a "webcam" are USB, Ethernet and IEEE 802.11 (denominated as IP camera). Further interfaces such as e.g. Composite video, S-Video or FireWire were also available. The USB video device class (UVC) specification allows inter-connectivity of webcams to computers without the need for proprietary device drivers.
Various software tools in wide use can be employed to take video and pictures, such as PicMaster and Microsoft's Camera app (for use with Windows operating systems), Photo Booth (Mac), or Cheese (with Unix systems). For a more complete list see Comparison of webcam software.
The most popular use of webcams is the establishment of video links, permitting computers to act as videophones or videoconference stations. For example, Apple's iSight camera, which is built into Apple laptops, iMacs and a majority of iPhones, can be used for video chat sessions, using the Messages instant messaging program. Other popular uses include security surveillance, computer vision, video broadcasting, and for recording social videos.