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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror System
I had never thought of using my Mac in this way, but thought it was a good use of a computer in an unusual way.

Yesterday I had gone to talk to a co-worker who was getting ready to head out the door for lunch. Rather than take out a compact, or find a mirror with which to check her hair, she just fired up PhotoBooth and used it as a mirror.

[robg adds: I've had this on sitting in the queue for a while, just waiting for a quiet hints day on which to run it...and that day is today. It will be interesting to see how many have done something similar -- personally, I never would have thought about doing this, mainly because I avoid mirrors whenever possible :).]
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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror | 16 comments | Create New Account
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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: aimee on Feb 25, '10 07:51:13AM

I think they did this in the 2006 movie The Devil Wears Prada.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: Andrew J Freyer on Feb 25, '10 08:06:37AM

Also, this hint is great with CONTOL+Scroll zooming for fixing stray contact lenses.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: karog on Feb 25, '10 08:07:32AM

I wonder how many years of bad luck you will get if PhotoBooth crashes while using it this way ;-?



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: critcol on Feb 25, '10 08:42:05AM

I used to do this all the time when I was interviewing for jobs. I didn't want to wear my tie around the city, so I'd get to some place nearby, open up my MacBook, fire up the iSight and tie my tie. Worked well enough for me.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: lihtox on Feb 25, '10 08:44:41AM

When my daughter was a baby, I'd sit with her on my lap and my laptop by side; when I wanted to know if she was sleeping, but couldn't quite see her eyes, I'd occasionally turn on PhotoBooth to get a look at her face. (A mirror is actually a useful tool for a new parent, pinned down by a sleeping baby, but I didn't normally have one on me.)



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: PancakeMan on Feb 25, '10 09:28:00AM

Alternatively, if you have a glossy MacBook screen, you can just turn brightness down to black! :-)



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: osxpounder on Feb 25, '10 09:39:38AM

I work part of the day in a semi-public computer lab stocked with iMacs. Whenever I must sit with my back to the door, I turn a [sleeping] iMac beside me so that I can see the door reflected in its way-too-glossy surface. That lets me know when someone comes in, so I can greet them.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: schutt on Feb 25, '10 11:41:41AM

Yeah, Photo Booth makes a good mirror because it displays a mirrored version of the camera output. I hadn't thought to look at that before. Unfortunately, with the current Mac lineup, the real problem is positioning the computer so that the whole screen isn't a mirror. I'm looking forward to anti-glare glass on the displays...



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: hookoa on Feb 25, '10 10:11:28AM

Avoiding mirrors ~ isn't that something vampires need to do?
:-)

---
"It's common knowledge among the clergy that God invented beef briskets for
Texans".
........Cactus Pryor



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: xplora on Feb 25, '10 10:41:32AM

There is also an example of this being done in the movie "The Devil Wears Prada"



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: wm on Feb 25, '10 11:53:27AM

Haha! I wonder if robg has ever been scooped by a movie before. :-)



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: sf addict on Feb 25, '10 11:34:25AM

Way back when Dashboard was new & fresh, there was a Mirror widget that did this same thing... I think it stopped working when 10.5 came out.

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Fun will now commence!



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Not only as mirror
Authored by: victory on Feb 25, '10 11:50:14AM

Well, this is probably beside the spirit of the original hint, but I tend to use Photo Booth on my MacBook as a quick-and-dirty scanner. Obviously, I'm not talking OCR-capable images or anything. Yet the built-in iSight is decent enough for quickly capturing sticky notes, receipts, back-of-the-napkin sketches, etc. (Another surprisingly common use I've found is to document license keys for physical software packages. This way I can keep the original card/form/sticker filed away for safekeeping and it reduces the chance of making mistakes over writing down the keys somewhere by hand)

Just remember to enable 'Auto Flip New Photos' in Photo Booth or you'll have to manually flip the image afterwards.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: mikeskates7 on Feb 25, '10 11:51:48AM

Even better, click the photo button and turn around. When you look back after it takes the photo you'll be greeted with a view of how truly hairy the back of your neck is.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: asmeurer on Feb 25, '10 12:07:58PM

I've tried this, but I've found that the resolution of the built in iSight in my early 2008 MacBook Pro is too low for a real good look at yourself, unless you just want to get a general picture.



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Use PhotoBooth / iSight camera as a mirror
Authored by: polaritypictures on Mar 01, '10 09:50:23AM

hmm is there any way to out put the camera view to the background? like playing a movie or screensaver as your background image, a way to show the camera image as your background live?



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