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Step 2: Set Basic EvoCam Settings

Once installed, double-click the EvoCam application icon to open it. If you haven’t registered yet, a shareware reminder screen appears; click the 15 days left button. An EvoCam window appears. If your camera is properly connected, you’ll see the camera’s image. Figure 1 shows the image from the built-in iSight on my MacBook Pro, which I’m using as a test mule to write this article. Normally, my WebCam set up on my production computer with an iSight that points out the window.

Figure 1

Figure 1 My built-in iSight camera offers a frightening view of what I look like on a typical workday.

If your camera isn’t attached, now is the time to attach it. If it is attached but there’s no image, it’s time to troubleshoot why the image doesn’t appear. We’ll wait while you take care of that.

The first step is to set the size of the image. This is where it could get a little tricky. If you want the same image on your Web site in two different sizes—perhaps a small size for the sidebar and a big size for a dedicated WebCam page—you want to set up the larger image with this first window. You can then set up a smaller image in a second window. For my example, I’m going to keep it simple by creating just one size image.

Choose Options > Canvas Size to display a submenu with a big bunch of sizes (see Figure 2). Choose the size you want. Remember, if the movie will be accessible from your Web site, you’ll want to minimize bandwidth by choosing a smaller size. At the same time, you don’t want it too small to see. For this example, I’m going to stick with 320 x 240, which is the default.

Figure 2

Figure 2 You want sizes? How about these?

Next, set the Refresh interval. Click the Refresh button to display options (see Figure 3). For my WebCam, I set the Refresh interval to 10 minutes because all I’m showing is the sky. This example shows 5 minutes. If you have an indoor WebCam in a mostly empty room, you can select the When motion is detected option, so EvoCam snaps images when someone walks into the room or gravity finally causes that stack of papers to spill onto the floor.

Figure 3

Figure 3 Refresh options.

Remember, the more often the image is snapped, the longer the movie will be. And the longer the movie is, the larger its file size. Think bandwidth.

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