My DIY low power light

The basic structure of my ‘mood light’, colour light, whatever light, is finished and now I just need to secure the electronics and decide what other features I might add.  It’s made using a wooden frame that is then covered in a heat shrink film using in RC aeroplanes.  The result is a glossy finish that is shrunk to fit and allows light to show through.

Some ideas of have for evolving the design:
– Various lighting modes (candle flicker, rainbow, random, etc)
– Microphone level / IR detection to change speed of the colour change
– BlueTooth compatibility so you can change the colour, etc remotely
– Time of day feature (changes colour and intensity depending on the time of the day
– Lucid dreaming mode – in the middle of the night, start pulsing the colours so I may realise the flashes in my sleep and start lucid dreaming..
– Something else (don’t know what yet!)

for now I’ll just upload find pictures…


Creative moments – what is in the making…

It’s February .. wow, these last few weeks, and also this year so far, has seemingly passed in the blink of an eye! I’ve been working on a few things lately, my laser projector type thing but also, a “mood light” (a light that changes colour).

Mark I – turned out OK, a few learning curves climbed and some accidental successes.
Mark II – not so good… started off so well too
Mark III – still in planning.

I have a final idea for the light and I will post some details soon.

Finally, a big thank you to all those who read these posts, and an extra big thanks to all those who’ve left some truly wonderful comments. I will try to reply to them all when I find some free moments.


Finally! Mr Transistor ignites laser

I say finally because after a lull of no posts in a week, I finally post something. However, more importantly I say “FINALLY” because after putting an old project away for months, a year, longer (?), I’ve finally managed to get a transistor to turn my last diode on and off, producing enough light to be seen across the room! A green laser too! This means I can draw on the wall with a laser…

Where it all began.. I ordered and received my Arduino open source electronics prototyping platform (Arduino Uno) a long time ago, maybe a year.. maybe less, anyway sometime ago, a while back, in a time unknown, I needed something to make.

I had plenty of ideas but they would involve some outlay of cash, I needed something else.. something from bits of rc planes.. Electric motors, speed controllers and servos. whilst tethered to my Arduino, I didn’t want moving ideas with spinning propellers, so I was left with servos… ooo, and a laser pointer.. Why not…

after a stroll along the Arduino learning curve, I’d managed to:

draw a box, a circle and a sine wave with a laser..
Use a mouse to control the laser dot on the wall..
Added buttons and LEDs for input and info
Made it draw a couple of stars and write my name..
built a PC app that allows someone to program a routine from a PC where dots are drawn

Now I can switch the laser on and off in the program, it makes for much better fit drawing. There Ste some bus to remove and tweaks to be here but it’s functional!

Lastly, thanks to all of those reading this blog. anyway, it’s way past my bed time, and I’m bit going to proof read this. It may not make sense!

More soon..

Composed on my phone. Eek  mistakes?

SOPA, Creative times and DuctBot v0.3.3

DuctBot is more stable on it’s feet but still not sensing anything from the world, that comes soon.  To be attracted by light?  To be attracted by sound?  To transduce distance ultrasonically?  I am going budget, so maybe a few microphones and a few LDR’s, sorry, light dependant resistors, and have it with two senses, maybe a few switches for a third sense, where to stop?  I guess when I can no longer recycle with bits I have lying around 🙂

And from robots – to polymer clay.  I had a recent play with polymer clay, and will soon attempt design 3 of the friendship tealight holder.  Pics coming soon, it’s just being refined.

And now for SOPA… today is the internet blackout.  Searching earlier, researching ideas I ended up at – blackout, I think they have an account login section but seemingly, nothing more. (wow, cool!).  My travels took me to – they have a blocked out logo.  Not to mention,  🙂  I knew of this pending day but I forgot until I arrived at work.. Well done for all those who have highlighted this current issue to a broader number of people in more locations.  This is an interesting time in the evolution of not only the internet but consciousness of the entire human race.  We cannot let the power of the entertainment industry control the internet, and censorship is not the answer.

I don’t watch many movies (the odd one here or there), and little TV but there within western societies, there are a lot of people who watch a lot of movies.  I am pretty certain that I could go without movies and TV, could you?  Would you?

SOPA / PIPA are not friendly!

PROTECT IP / SOPA Breaks The Internet from Fight for the Future on Vimeo.


New video upload

I’ve got a new video uploaded – a test of my relatively new compact digital camera – the Canon SX230 HS…

The footage was shot in Scotland, on the coast of Moray on New Years Eve 2011.  I didn’t use a tripod so the video is a bit wobbly when I zoom in to 56x but it does highlight the capabilities well, seeing all the way across the mini bay 🙂

Let’s try embed it here: