Set Up A Home Surveillance System With FaceTime

We've featured a few ways to create a home surveillance system, but if you'd like something really, really simple for keeping an eye on your living room, all you need is a Mac and this AppleScript.

It certainly won't alert you to intruders in your house, but if you want to make sure your cat hasn't gotten into a fight with the dog, you can easily access your webcam from your iOS device with FaceTime. Just copy and paste the following AppleScript into AppleScript editor and save it as an Application. Now, whenever you leave the house, just run the application and it will monitor for new FaceTime calls.

When you want to check in on your living room, just call yourself on FaceTime from your iPhone or iPod touch, and your Mac will automatically answer the call. When you hang up the call, the script will close FaceTime and continue monitoring for incoming calls. When you get home, you can just quit the app to stop FaceTime from auto-answering everything that comes in.

-- Facetime Auto Answer -- Copyright ©2010 CornDog Computers -- twitter: @CornDoggyRob

repeat -- Check to see if Facetime is active tell application "System Events" to set theCount to the count of (processes whose name is "Facetime") if theCount = 0 then do shell script "sleep 1" else tell application "FaceTime" to activate do shell script "sleep 2" tell application "FaceTime" to activate tell application "System Events" to tell process "FaceTime" if name of front window contains "with" then do shell script "sleep 5" else tell application "System Events" to activate application "FaceTime" keystroke return do shell script "sleep 5" -- Check to see if call is active tell application "System Events" to tell process "FaceTime" if name of front window contains "with" then do shell script "sleep 5" else -- Quit Facetime if call is not active tell application "FaceTime" to quit do shell script "sleep 5" end if end tell end if end tell end if end repeat end

You'll want to make sure that you have your Mac set to use an email address that no one else knows you use for FaceTime, otherwise it will auto-answer anyone that calls it. Unless, that is, you are setting up a kitty-cam and giving the address to all of your friends for afternoon entertainment.

How to Setup a Home Surveillance System Using FaceTime [CornDog Computers]


    Is there a way to do the opposite? Use the iOS device as a webcam for the Mac?

Join the discussion!