I remember being in a Microsoft building many years ago wondering what was the best time to go to the canteen when one of the guys I was working with told me to just check on the Intranet. He logged in and showed me a live web cam of the canteen area, placed there so the staff could see when the canteen wasn't busy to go down for lunch.
Suddenly I was more interested in the camera than in lunch as my colleague informed me it was an IP Camera.
"Where can I get one!" was my first question.
He told me they would probably retail at around £600. I gauped at him, I loved the idea of an IP Camera but I wasn't prepared to spend that much on one. Then roughly 6 years later. I discovered a Wireless Camera, with night vision, pan and title functionality, built in microphone and speakers for around £40! You have to admire the evolution of technology!
This camera is by no means the best in its class and from what I can see its a pretty cheaply manufactured Chinese device. But for the money I spent on it, I get a lot more functionality than I had originally bargained for.
With a bit of fiddling I eventually got the camera to work on my home network on a static IP address. I then setup some port forwarding on my router so I could view the camera on the Internet (password protected).
The camera comes with its own built in web server which has interfaces for most browsers and mobile devices so you can move that camera around from your iPhone, Windows Mobile or Android phone if you want. The cool bit is, is if you install the iPhone or Android app you can also listen in over the camera's microphone! You can also speak over the camera's speakers using the app which is equally as cool when you're playing pranks on people.
At the moment I use the camera as a baby monitor. Its proved incredibly useful as one, given that I can check on the baby from any room in the house now and for the price it provides the same functionality for a much lower price than baby monitors with the same functionality.