Lex Friedman
20 June, 2012
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Link to: Looky


Binary Formations


OS X 10.7 or later, 64-bit processor

Age Rating:  4+


Available on the App Store Buy
App Guide

You’d be hard-pressed to prove that you absolutely need Looky 1.0.0 (Mac App Store link). In truth, Looky, a menu-bar utility for quickly popping open a live view from your Mac’s built-in camera, is at best a nicety and at worst a bit superfluous. But it turns out that the utility can prove useful at times.

Click on the eyeball icon in your menu bar and the Looky window appears, showing your smiling face along with whatever’s behind you. The window loads quickly enough, though it generally takes an extra moment or two for the Mac’s iSight or FaceTime camera to turn on and the video to appear. Still, the process is notably quicker than launching a built-in app like Photo Booth.

Unfortunately, the video is imperfect: With my MacBook Pro’s built-in iSight camera, Looky presents a slightly narrowed and elongated image, meaning I look a bit thinner, so it’s not all bad. The effect is slight but noticeable.

By default, Looky doesn’t let you resize its camera window manually, but you can choose among numerous predefined options, from the very tiny Stealth Mode to the screen-overtaking Ego Mode. Click off the video and it disappears, unless you first click the Pin icon at the upper left of the window. That keeps the video pinned to the menu bar icon until you click that icon again. Switch to Float Mode, however and you can freely move and resize the video window anywhere on your screen and it will stay there until you click on the Looky icon in your menu bar again. Note that in this mode, resizing doesn’t automatically maintain the proper aspect ratio, so make sure to hold down Shift as you do so.

If you frequently need to spot-check your teeth or if coworkers (intentionally or otherwise) sneak up behind you, Looky offers an unobtrusive, easy-to-trigger way to see whatever your Mac’s camera can see in a hurry.


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