Error message

  • Warning: "continue" targeting switch is equivalent to "break". Did you mean to use "continue 2"? in include_once() (line 1389 of /Library/Server/Web/Data/Sites/Documents/jonathansblog/includes/
  • Warning: "continue" targeting switch is equivalent to "break". Did you mean to use "continue 2"? in require_once() (line 341 of /Library/Server/Web/Data/Sites/Documents/jonathansblog/includes/

Warning message

The service having id "facebook_widget" is missing, reactivate its module or save again the list of services.

Add live video from a built-in or plugin iSight camera on a Webpage using Quartz Composer


This page only works if you are using an Apple Mac computer that has an iSight camera either built into the computer or has an external iSight camera plugged in.

As you'll see, below is a QuickTime movie embedded into a webpage. The QuickTime movie makes use of the Quartz Composer engine and feeds live data from the iSight camera. Quartz Composer is built into the Mac OS X operating system, hence it is restricted to working only on Macintosh computers.

take a look and see what all the fuss is about!


Want to build this into your own pages?

It's simple, here's how:

  1. Copy and paste the following HTML code into a webpage...

    <object classid="clsid:02BF25D5-8C17-4B23-BC80-D3488ABDDC6B"
    width="320" height="240" codebase="">
    <param name="src" VALUE=""/>
    <param name="autoplay" VALUE="true"/>
    <param name="controller" VALUE="false"/>

    <embed src="" width="320" height="240" autoplay="true" controller="false" pluginspage="" />

  2. You can download the file from this webserver. (CTRL click the link and Save As...)


Hi Jonathan,
Very cool indeed. didn't work on my old G4 but on the school macbook it is perfect.
I can also play the movie in SuperCard and use it to capture from the isight via a script, which has got me thinking.
Thanks so much for sharing this.

John @ Sandaig

What an amazing idea! Thanks, Jonathan.

Wow... pretty cool stuff... but reported in O'Reilly over a year ago? And here:

But, all the same, it's worth mentioning it regularly - well done!

That's the one... I was developing some stuff in Quartz Composer last week and stumbled across that. Funny that it wasn't made more of it back then. Hey ho.


very cool.
but how do i paste into a webpage?

Hi Doug,

If you are building an HTML web page, go to the HTML code view of the page and simply paste in the HTML code that I have shown above. Save the page and view in a web browser.

Hope that helps




Would it be possible to setup so that you could view the live feed from another mac on the local network? ie if you wanted to use it to monitor your office room from the lounge?

Does anyone know of any good external mac cameras to use as an isight camera - the built in ones are no good if you want to take a decent quick snapshot of a product ?

Hi, is it possible to create a code so it works on hyves also? (As a gadget)


At WWDC, Glen had the unenviable task of hitting the compatibility lab and testing the upcoming release of iGlasses on as many computers as he could. When checking out the new 2.2 and 2.4 GHz MacBook Pros, he noticed something interesting about the built-in iSight:

It’s a whole new camera. Really!

First, looking at System Profiler:

It has a new USB PID. What I’ll henceforth have to refer to as the original built-in iSight, had the USB Product ID: 0×8501 and reports its manufacturer as Micron. The new built-in iSight has the Product ID of 0×8502 and reports manufacturer of Apple Inc.

Now the cool part: It’s a 1.3 megapixel sensor! I wrote a simple test application to capture a frame of video using an SGDataProc and save it to the Desktop. On my older 2.33 GHz MB Pro with the original built-in iSight, what I get is a VGA (640×480) image. This is the maximum size of the original camera, which I know for sure uses a VGA sensor.

Then, braving the 95 degree the heat, we got on our bikes and cruised down to the Cambridge Apple Store. After fighting our way through the crowds of people asking if they can pre-order an iPhone, we commandeered some MB Pros. The same test program produced a nice, big 1.3 MP (1280×1024) image.


THis iSight in Quartz Composer doesn't appear to work any more qith QC 3 and QT7.5 It works in the IDE visual preview but not as a exported QT file.

I concur with "Heavyweek" - this QC patch, and others like it, only work in QC viewer and preview, but the exported QT file just shows a black screen. I have QC-3.1, QT-7.6.4 on MacOS-10.5.8

Add new comment

Filtered HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
Enter the characters shown in the image.