A new website, Sensr, is set to change this, making it easy for anyone to turn their webcam into a motion detector or stream it online for anyone to see.
The idea for the website came from the entrepreneur Adam Beguelin. His previous adventure was Truveo, which he eventually sold for $50 million to AOL in 2006.
After trying to set up a couple of webcams to monitor an empty home he owned (and having some difficulty doing so) he decided to try to create a better solution. Sensr was the resulting idea, allowing anyone to easily check their webcam feed(s) from any internet-enabled device, and for it to automatically alert you if motion is detected.
It seems the service has been useful for Beguelin himself, as he tried to capture a rat that was living in his house using night-vision webcams.
Sensr received $1.5 million in venture capital last month. Beguelin hopes that many restaurants and bars will eventually use his website, allowing their customers to see what’s going on their favourite places.
You can check out the Sensr website here. It is free for anyone to use, although they do intend to charge for HD streams in the future.