So here's my situation. First and foremost we are on a budget so our guest list is limited. I am a techno geek, so most of my friends live inside my computer and are pretty far away. Even though several are going to be able to make it to my wedding, there are even more that won't be able to make it. Not to mention family and friends who won't be able to make an international trip, or who are in poor health and aren't supposed to travel. Originally I was planning on sending them all photo CDs, and doing a slideshow on our wedsite, but then I started thinking with my geek gland.
Back in March, one of my fabulous internet groups had several members who attended an expo in Chicago. ALL the members of the site had helped to fund raise, and everyone was excited about it. I decided try and stream it live, so all our online friends who couldn't be there could be participants. It was a resounding success, and everyone loved it. Why couldn't I use this same technology for my wedding?
I'm using http://www.ustream.tv/ for several reasons.
- It's FREE.
- It's easy to use.
- It's got great image quality (especially considering that it's FREE).
- It has Chat and Twitter capabilities so people can talk about what they're watching.
- It's customizable (Look, it's my wedding colors and logo!
I have a Toshiba laptop that runs Windows. Ustream can run either Windows on a Mac or PC. (There is a special plug in to use to get extra quality but we'll go over that later. Basically you can use any computer with internet access. I'll also be using my FH's Lenovo ideabook.
While it is completely possible to use the built in webcams, they typically aren't that flattering, the picture quality sucks, and they're almost impossible to adjust. I went out and bought a "Streaming" camera with light correction off Ebay for $65. The camera I got is a Logitech webcam.