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  dino head  My Webcam Fetish FAQ

What's your deal? Are you a flaming exhibitionist? Why all the webcams?
Actually, I just love experimenting with new technology, and I'm always up for a challenge. Live webcams that can pan, tilt and zoom are pretty cool!

How come some of the cameras do not work? I get a "Page Not Found" error.
All my webcams require computers to operate. Sometimes I turn the cameras off. Sometimes the internet connection may be down. But most of the time it's just because I forgot to turn on the software.

What kind of cameras do you use for your webcams?
All of my cameras are Logitech 3000 Pro's and the one at work is a Logitech 4000 Pro. They're all USB cameras.

What type of special hardware is required to get your cameras to pan, tilt and zoom?
I have two cameras that pan, tilt and zoom, and they use a USB TrackerPod™ sold by Eagletron!

What type of computer server is required to run these webcams?
You'd be surprised. Most people think that you need some heavy-duty enterprise-level computer. You don't. My Driveway Webcam runs off of a Cyrix 233, which is basically a throw-away computer these days. Here's Eagletron's minimum system requirements:

  • Windows® 98SE, ME, 2000, or XP. Linux support is planned.
  • Genuine Intel® PentiumTM, Pentium II, Pentium III, AMD® K6, AMD K6-2 processor running at 133 MHz or higher; for best performance, 200 MHz or above is recommended
  • 32MB RAM
  • Available USB port
  • CD-ROM drive
  • Display adapter cabable of 24 bit color at 640x480
  • Windows compatible sound card and microphone (for voice command features)
  • Modem or LAN access to the Internet at 28.8Kbps or faster required (for video conferencing)
  • Web browser such as Microsoft Internet ExplorerTM 4.0 or higher, Netscape NavigatorTM 6.0 or higher
  • 20MB available hard disk space

I don't have a computer. Can I still set up these webcams?
You don't have a computer? How the heck are you reading this FAQ!? Unfortunately, Eagletron's TrackerCams do not have built-in webservers and require a computer to operate. If you're looking for camera's that have built-in webservers, I highly suggest you check out the Axis lineup of cameras. Their least expensive solution is the Axis 2100.

What kind of software is required?
All of my webcams use Eagletron's software that comes with the TrackerPod™. Amazingly, you don't need the TrackerPod™ to set up your computer to act as a webcam server. More amazing is that this software is available for free download from Eagletron's site. So, if you have an internet connection, and a camera, you can start streaming live video in no time!

Is there anything else that the software can do?
Yes! Streaming internet video is not the only thing the software can do. Check out these features:

  • Remote Control Connect to your TrackerCam over the web and make it pan, tilt, and zoom to see what you want with simple mouse-clicks or voice commands. Works with any webcam.
  • Digital Zoom Scale the camera image from 10% to 500% to get a full view or close-up view using an ordinary webcam - takes advantage of high resolution webcams too.
  • Surveillance Set your TrackerCam to scan a room or area in a simple or complex pattern exactly as you specify. Useful for monitoring banks, lobbies, workshop, parking lot, daycare, workrooms, etc.
  • Motion Tracking The TrackerCam is tuned to track all human skin tones and can automatically pan and tilt to track the nearest person as they move around. Quality of tracking depends on quality of webcam.
  • Video Capture Set your TrackerCam to capture video from its input to your computer. Make your own home movies!
  • Remote Monitoring With our surveillance, motion detection, tracking, and remote control features, the TrackerCam can monitor an entire room by detecting, tracking and recording movement. From anywhere in the world, use your web browser to view a history of the movement captured by your TrackerCam!

Don't you need a T1 connection to run a webcam?
NO! You can run these webcams even with a measly dial-up connection. Broadband works best. Most ISP's have slight psychological problems when people start running their own webservers, so you might want to check with your ISP before you set one up. Or, you can do what I did and called nobody.

What kind of infrastructure is required to run multiple cameras?
My house runs an internal network, using a Linksys Router as the backbone. I then port-forward http requests to specific computers on my network.

Sounds complicated. Do you need to be an MCSE to set this up?
Networking your home, or networking in general is a little complicated. However, I'm just a measly Mechanical Engineer with little- to no- computer science education. If I can do it, anybody can. Just get Networking for Dummies at Barnes & Noble.

      


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Page last updated on: 5/9/03 10:36 AM

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