Entertain your telecommuting dev team by a live streaming reenactment of A-Ha's 'Take on me' music video - a mac tutorial

During a recent break in regression testing, I sought out a method of streaming a video of my macbook screen to the web so my team could have the option of watching my tests as they ran. I'd also been wanting to give ustream.tv a try, and 2 birds + 1 stone == WIN. Ultimately, I didn't get everything working until after the testing was done, but I still posted the link and tested out a few filters on CamTwist, one of which was called "Take on me". The effect, as you might guess, give the cam a black and white comic feel. The slow frame rate added to the effect, and the urge to dig up one of my favoriate 80's A-Ha tunes and flail myself around in my chair was irresistible. Literally.

Since it took me a little while to dig up all the resources to accomplish such a feat, I figured I'd save someone else the trouble. So, here's what you do (instructions are for a mac, though a Windows machine setup looks similar:

  1. Download CamTwist and install
  2. Restart your computer (I tried not doing this, but nah, you really have to restart).
  3. Open up CamTwist, select Webcam and double-click the "Take on me" filter (Bonus: to stream your desktop, click "Desktop" under "Select a video source").
  4. Sign up for a ustream.tv account and fill out all the forms.
  5. Click the 'Broadcast now' button in the upper right hand corner of your ustream account page (Click "skip" for the Twitter unless you're looking for more ubiquitous embarrassment)
  6. Select "CamTwist" as the video input and a mic as the audio input. You should see your sketchy self on the monitor.
  7. Google "imeem take on me". I just discovered imeem as a way to listen to full songs without creating any accounts. I've done several searches with "imeem" + song title and get a full streaming tune. Once you get on an imeem page, the song should start playing automatically.
  8. Click "Start broadcasting"
  9. Give your fellow dev's the URL (you can find it under "Your Shows", and click the link "Go to Show URL" (Bonus: you can also embed the stream and chat on a web page by going to "Your Shows" and then "Share")
  10. Flail about in your chair (it might be slightly more effective if you wait until towards the end of the song and have someone click turn the filter on and off as fast as they can)

Of course, this example is pretty novel, but the combo of ustream and CamTwist open up some cool possibilities. Just being able to share your desktop on the web is pretty awesome. The resolution isn't great, but if you show just a portion of your screen, you can get the message across.

Helpful links

http://allocinit.com/index.php?title=CamTwist - Download page (http://allocinit.com/images/1/18/CamTwist-1.7.dmg - actual download)http://www.ustream.tv/helpcenter/camtwist - ustream instructions on setting up CamTwist
http://www.ustream.tv/helpcenter/advancedhowto - Advanced how to on ustreamhttp://www.ustream.tv/mydashboard - Your dashboard on ustream
http://chrisshattuck.com/chris-shattuck-live-stream - My (occasionally) live streaming feed