lighting

Light Up inSoft pillow will have you awake all night

Light Up inSoft pillow will have you awake all night

When it comes to gadgets, its not often that one will catch your eye for its softness, but that's just what designer Takaaki Oguchi has done with this one - it's a light up pillow. Without a doubt the most comfortable bit of technology I've seen all week, Oguchi's "inSoft" LED light pillow has the ability to light from within without making your ear go "ouch!" Through a combination of cool-burning LED lights and padding that'll allow just so much light to travel through it surrounding the light module, Oguchi may well have created the nightlight every kid is staying awake at night screaming about.

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BMW working on laser lights for future vehicles

BMW working on laser lights for future vehicles

BMW was among the first carmakers out there to start using LED lights for headlights and other lights. The LEDs are great because they use less power and they are able to last much longer than your typical automotive lighting. BMW is working on what it calls the next logical step in automotive lighting with laser lighting. The lights are expected to come to market within a few years.

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DOE announces Phillips wins L Prize competition to develop efficient replacement for 60W normal light bulb

DOE announces Phillips wins L Prize competition to develop efficient replacement for 60W normal light bulb

The Department of Energy (DOE) held a competition to get companies to design a replacement for the typical 60W incandescent light bulb that was more energy efficient. The prize for winning the competition was $10 million. There was only one entry to the competition and that was Phillips. The bulb you see in the photo below is the 75W Phillips LED replacement bulb, which looks just like the 60W bulb that won the contest.

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3D printed mushroom cloud lamp costs $1495!

3D printed mushroom cloud lamp costs $1495!

I really like that you can print anything you can dream up with a 3D printer. If you give a design geek access to a 3D printer, you never know what they will dream up. Designers at the Veneridesign Studio have cooked up this awesome mushroom cloud lamp. The design of the lamp is intended to look like the cloud produced by a nuclear explosion.

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Switch Lighting LED light bulb is cheap and makes light just like incandescent

Switch Lighting LED light bulb is cheap and makes light just like incandescent

I am all for moving away from the normal incandescent bulbs almost all of us use today to a more efficient and longer lasting alternative like CFL or LED lighting. The problem is that the incandescent bulb is dirt cheap; you can buy a box of four for a few dollars. The CLF bulbs are more expensive with one selling for a couple times that price and the LED bulbs today are even more costly with each bulb selling in the $40 to $50 range.

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Genius Light Switch Design by Taewon Hwang

Genius Light Switch Design by Taewon Hwang

Have you ever walked into a house and had trouble figuring out what switch controlled which light? Designer, Taewon Hwang comes through with this delightfully intuitive light switch concept. He takes the floorplan of a house and turns it into the design for the light switch. One of these switches could make it easy to control every light in your home from one location, or you can install multiple switches for any configuration or purpose you can imagine.

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LED Christmas lights hacked into huge IM status display [Video]

LED Christmas lights hacked into huge IM status display [Video]

Christmas lights can be gaudy and distracting, or they can be a force used for good; well, as long as by "good" you mean individually-programmable and capable of showing IM status. Microsoft .NET developer Andrej Kyselica discovered that, after some tinkering, he could get a FEZ embedded controller to individually manage each LED on a string of $60 Christmas lights from Costco.

Video demo after the cut

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Mathmos Smart Astro lava lamp adds LEDs to 60s classic

Mathmos Smart Astro lava lamp adds LEDs to 60s classic

Lava Lamps are pretty straightforward beasts: take a hot bulb, slap a glass jar full of liquid and wax on top, and watch the undulating shapes simmer around while you try to remember exactly what was so great about the 60s. Now Mathmos is back with a slightly more high-tech version, the Smart Astro Lava Lamp, turning to the awesome power of color-changing LEDs to add some extra user-involvement.

Video demo after the cut

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Death Star Planetarium puts you in a galaxy far, far away

Death Star Planetarium puts you in a galaxy far, far away

Perhaps we're just still on a Star Wars high after the Verizon DROID R2-D2 by Motorola dropped on our desk yesterday, but we're eyeing up this Death Star Planetarium and - against our better judgement - wondering if we should pick one up.  The compact ball is decorated to look like the Empire's planet destroyer, but actually creates a map of the heavens - either real or according to George Lucas' imagination - on your ceiling.

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LED networking research shows flashes of brilliance

LED networking research shows flashes of brilliance

Chinese researchers are looking to use flickering LEDs to replace traditional short-distance wireless networking standards, and that could be integrated into office or home lighting.  By rapidly pulsing the LEDs, the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute for the Study of Semiconductor have come up with the Lighting Information Network, consisting of blue LEDs capable of 2Mbps transfer speeds.

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