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This article will give you a few ideas to help you take advantage of the full potential of your webcam. We have listed as many free software programs whenever possible, so that you can use these ideas without spending more money.
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Add Life to Your Presentations by Recording Video
You can use your webcam to record yourself and insert the video into Windows Movie Maker. This feature is only available in the Windows Moviemaker in XP or higher. Record short clips in addition to the built in animations in Windows Movie Maker to wish your friend a happy birthday or on other special occasions.
Find out more about using the Windows Movie Maker in this collection of Movie Maker tips on Bright Hub.
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Monitor Your Property Or Home
There are a plethora of services offering free webcam monitoring. You can set the webcam to monitor a room or even your front yard. I would recommend that you use a high quality webcam for performing this task. Most webcams made for home usage have a short focal length and pictures of distant objects tend to look blurry. Homecamera.com is a free service that is easy to setup, although it requires installation of their client. It is compatible with all webcam models. You need to login to their site to view images and it also has a log facility. Another option would be Ustream.tv.
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Play Webcam Games
Another fun use for your webcam is to play games. With certain games, your webcam allows you to control objects on the screen with a motion of your hand or head. Most of the games are flash-based and are a whole lot of fun to play. A popular pack of games to get you started is Webcam Cyclops play. It is a pack of five games, so you will definitely find something interesting to kill some time with. There are also many freeware games that run in your browser window and require only a flash plug-in to work.
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You can use your webcam to post impromptu video messages on your blog. You can upload your videos on video sharing sites like YouTube and post the video to your blog. Blip.tv is one such service for getting your video blog online.
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Take Notes during Class
If your laptop has a webcam, you can use it to record classes on video. These videos should come in handy when you need to study.