Make: Projects

Google+ Hangout & Stream

Robot Party behind the scenes -- broadcast your own hacking hangout!

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  • Time Required: 5 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
Google+ Hangout & Stream

Ever wanted to get a bunch of makers together to show off their projects, and broadcast this to the world? You can do this with Google+ and Ustream in a snap, even if you don’t have Google+ Hangouts on Air!

To do this, you will need a Google+ and UStream account. You will also need Ustream Producer (free), and a camera-mixing program (eg, CamTwist or ManyCam).

In a nutshell, the trick to making this work is to first start the camera-mixing program, then start the Google+ hangout, then broadcast your screen to Ustream. See the steps below for more details.

Every week I do this for my Robot Party, so thought I would give a behind-the-scenes explanation of how it’s done! Enjoy! :)


Step #1:

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  • Set up your robots/hacks and your camera to show them off.
  • Have lots of light pointed on the robots.
  • Start CamTwist (or your camera mixing program) on your computer.
  • Play around with CamTwist's settings to suit your needs. For example: PIP, title, fire, etc.

Step #2:

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  • Go to Google+ and press the Start Hangout button on the right side.
  • Make sure your camera settings are correct by pressing the gear (settings) button.
  • Choose what circles will be able to join your hangout.
  • If you choose "Public", everyone in the world will be able to join your hangout.
  • When it starts working, you will be able to see yourself and others in the hangout! Yay!

Step #3:

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  • Start Ustream Producer.
  • Launch the Desktop Presenter from the computer icon dropdown menu.
  • Resize the presented dimensions in the Desktop Presenter by choosing Select Screen Region and pressing Change Region.
  • Change the microphone settings to the Built-in Microphone.
  • Make sure that all of the video settings are correct.
  • You can play around with transitions, PIPs, and media too.

Step #4:

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  • Start the Ustream broadcast.
  • You can see if it is working by navigating to your Ustream page, or wherever the stream is embedded.
  • Invite more friends to your hangout and stream, and HAVE FUN!


Google Hangouts are a great way to collaborate, and broadcasting them to a stream is a great way to share them with the world! Hopefully this will encourage you to start your own!

This tutorial is part of my fundraising effort for travel expenses to go to Maker Faire Bay Area! So if you like this tutorial, you can donate towards my travel expenses here! Thanks for checking it out!

If you enjoyed this tutorial, you can visit my website at where I am up to all sorts of shenanigans!