December 12, 2005

now stealing huge comestibles is one thing, trashing them on holy ground is plain nasty

Cas is currently... having a tantrum at life

I suddenly don't like using a Mac.

This is a serious thing for me to say, almost heretic, so I will explain.

What with the CC back in Canada till who knows when, I am being initiated in the wonders of Skype. Whilst this is great for voice, on occasion it would be nice to actually see who I am chatting to, which brings us to what I want to talk about: webcams.

The CC dug out his webcam, plugged it in, and after swearing at Yahoo! messenger for ten minutes [I'll rant about Yahoo! another time], I was able to see him (yay!).

I, on the other hand, don't have a webcam. I think they are evil and, frankly, they scare me. I am petrified that someone will be able to spy on me without my knowledge (is it still spying if you are aware of them?) a la American Pie. It isn't rational, I know, but even when the damn thing is unplugged and in a drawer it worries me. For this reason, the fact I don't like being on camera anyway, and that I don't really have the need for it, I haven't even thought of owning a webcam since I bought the Mac nearly two years ago.

But, seeing as how it is hardly fair I get to see my boyfriend but he doesn't get to see me, I got over my fear and toddled off down to Argos to get me a webcam today.

Alas, and alack, this isn't a story with a happy ending. I get it home, pull it out of the box, shudder at the evilness of it, and go to install the software when...Yup, you've guessed it, Windows only. I go online to have a bit of a nose around, see if I can find a patch or something, and it turns out, webcams for Macs just don't exist. Correction, affordable webcams for Macs just don't exist.

Even if I had money to burn, the cheapest Mac-supported webcam I can find is £80. Apple themselves do the very shiny iSight camera, which is a steal at £99. I am loathe to purchase an iSight anyway, because I have come across a few things that suggest it might not work too well with messaging systems other than iChat (which, of course, is Apple only). Something in me does baulk at spending minimum of £80 on something I will use to talk to one person (hell will freeze over before I start regularly using the webcam) and that only for (hopefully) a few months. I did find a site that has software which claims it can make Windows-only webcams work on Macs, but the webcams they support are all either no longer obtainable, or hideously expensive. Also, for most of the cameras there is a rider that says "this only works on around 50% of the cameras in this range due to chip inconsistencies..."

What is it about us Mac users that means we don't get to video-chat with the rest of the world? Is it that, because we can afford to shell out £2000 for a computer, manufacturers assume we can shell out £100 for a webcam? Or are we just all too ugly?

Cas is all sad now. I'm just wishing I had discovered this problem a week ago before Curly Durly went Christmas shopping - I might have been able to get the Aged P's to help out toward a shiny iSight. Alas, it's too late for that as I have it on good authority all the presents for this year have been purchased.

So, dear blog minions, does anyone have any ideas to help Cas cope with 3000-odd miles of the Atlantic Ocean limiting communication?


At 4:32 PM, Anonymous RIB said...

Ummm.... Ebay?

The Logitech Quickcam VC USB DV Camera worked for PC and Mac if you can find one...

At 4:51 PM, Anonymous RIB said...

In fact... is this any good?

At 5:52 PM, Anonymous Spooky said...

Being largely unfamiliar with the world of webcams (and Macs to a certain extent) I am not certain if this is a solution to the same problem. Having said that is anything on this page helpfull?


Or have you seen that already?

At 10:14 PM, Blogger Cas said...

RIB - I actually hadn't thought of eBay, but I managed to find one that will (hopefully) work for a decent(ish) price on Amazon marketplace.

Spooky - I hadn't seen that one either. It does look like it will solve part two of the problem I am anticipating, which is how to get a Mac webcam talking to a PC webcam...

Ug! Why did I decide to date a guy who insists on using a PC? *Sigh* I clearly have no taste ;)

At 12:05 AM, Anonymous Joseph said...

At 12:06 AM, Anonymous Joseph said...

And yes. You have no taste.

;) :P

At 10:18 AM, Blogger Cas said...

It's the one and only Surly Elf!
*huggles* Joe :)

And thank you. Those two I do seem to remember looking at. Mainly so I could cross-reference it with the webcams I could actually find to purchase!

I do have this horrible feeling that, when it gets here, the bloody thing isn't going to work after all.

And no taste? What happened to me being "classy"? :P

At 2:59 PM, Anonymous The Surly One said...

Oh you know I was only kidding.
After all, you are friends with me ;)

I use macam for my old Quickcam Web with Yahoo. Works well enough. Shame iChat AV is so picky about wanting a firewire camera instead of a USB one...

At 3:17 PM, Blogger Cas said...

I'd reply to you, but I want people to use the new blog :P

Go. Shoo!

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