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When "captured" by the computer, the video stream may be saved, viewed or sent on to other networks via systems such as the internet, and emailed as an attachment.
The Webcam Social Shopper is one example of software that utilizes the webcam in this manner.
Various software tools in wide use can be employed for this, such as Pic Master (for use with Windows operating systems), Photo Booth (Mac), or Cheese (with Unix systems).
For a more complete list see Comparison of webcam software.
The video streams provided by webcams can be used for a number of purposes, each using appropriate software: Most modern webcams are capable of capturing arterial pulse rate by the use of a simple algorithmic trick.
Researchers claim that this method is accurate to ±5 bpm.