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Watch And Learn

Bons Voyeurs

The idea of 24/7 surveillance doesn't have to have Orwellian overtones-entrepreneurs are finding Web cams can be a creative way to enhance a business.

KidSpot LLC, day care for children. Camera debuted October 2000 at www.kidspot4fun.com.

Parents are given a password that allows them to check in on their children during the day by clicking into this day-care center's Web cam. The general public can't access the Web cam, so kids' privacy is protected. "The Web cam makes parents feel more secure because it allows them to stay in touch with their children," says CEO Carla Leinbach, 33. "Parents' ability to look in on their children at any time increases their confidence in the care we provide and thus their desire to use our services."

MetaMarkets.com, mutual fund managers. Camera debuted August 1999 at http://cams.metamarkets.com.

"As managers of OpenFund, the first mutual fund run live in real time on the Internet, we wanted to bring Web site visitors right into our trading room," says president and CEO Don Luskin, 46. "The ability to point and zoom the camera creates a vivid 'you are there' experience. It's a hit with users." -R.M.

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This article was originally published in the December 2000 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Watch And Learn.

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