The French company Remake Design has created light-up cubes that you can put together, modify, and rearrange to get your point across. Each module has a 10W Xenon bulb and can be screwed to the wall or attached to each other by magnets. They offer a set of four for $300.00 and you can do your own thing depending on your mood or business. Suggested designs vary from a simple hello, to a business name, to Pac-Man, if you can’t get past the game.
Read More | Remake Design
Ann Arbor, Michigan, always a town with the latest in tech, has decided to replace about 1,400 downtown street lights with LEDs. They claim to be the first for the conversion which they feel will save the town $100,000 a year, according to Mayor John Hieftje. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, widespread use could cut energy consumption in half. Considering that it only cost $630,000, we hope that other towns will follow suit for the same results.
Read More | Post Bulletin
For those of you that play chess into the wee hours of the morning, Dutch designer Daan Van Tuldur has created a set that is lit by LEDs that are located in the 4 corners of the board. Black and white are replaced by matte and transparent squares, and all the pieces basically have the same shape. Besides this prototype, Van Tuldur has worked on many designs, including HotSpots, arcade-size retro systems geared for the next generation of Atari gamers.
Read More | Judag
Philips has designed a moodlight that can create 16 million colors. The Living Color LED can be used on ceilings or floors and comes with a remote so that you can alter its hue whenever the mood strikes you. At a size of 28.8 x 22.5 x 24.4 cm and a weight of 553 g, the company claims it has an “extremely long” life with low energy usage. We wonder if that really means long enough to find all of those colors. It’s available for €149.00 (~$211.00,) but only in Germany at this point. Feel free to pick one up for us if you plan on visiting the country this Oktoberfest.
Read More | Worldshop
This Japanese furniture uses sensors embedded in the table’s top to match the color of whatever has been placed on the surface. Red, green, and blue lights that humans cannot see are then reflected off the object. A Mac placed inside the table sends messages to the four stools which projects light through them, then a pulse is added at around the same tempo as humans’ breathing.
Creator Shinya Matsuyama and his team from the Studio Mongoose have developed the Fuwapica Furniture on the concept that gods inhabit everything that is humanmade and should “be given a chance to interact with the people that use it.” They suggest that several items should be changed around to match its owners’ moods. Although it might be pleasant to play with for an hour or so, we think generally that we don’t want have our moods exposed for any great length of time.
Read More | BBC
Early on when Nintendo was announcing the Wii console, they mentioned that the sensor bar might be sensitive to certain kinds of lighting, like halogen lamps. Now, according to a post in Nintendo’s forums, that lighting might also include sunlight. The post gave feedback on the user’s experience with the Wii at the Nintendo World store, and described the sunlight issue:
For about an hour or so, the sun shone right into the store, the two MP3:C kiosks had to have curtains above them, and the Wii Sports Tennis and Shooting Game kiosks were unplayable since they were “shrouded” in sunlight. Later the sun went behind a building, and everything was in working order again. So when you get your Wii, don’t play it in the sunlight.
The sunlight problems are interesting, partly because in one of the Iwata Asks interviews on Nintendo’s official site, issues with fluorescent lights and sunlight were issues that were specifically mentioned:
In the early stages of development we ran into a number of problems that we hadn’t anticipated, like the fact that the controller would react to fluorescent light, for example. Creating a mechanism that prevents the controller from responding to fluorescent light and sunlight may sound like low-profile activities, but it still gave us a lot to work on.
Clearly, Nintendo has considered various lighting schemes and issues with sensor bar placement in the design of the console, but it is somewhat unclear what steps Nintendo took to ameliorate these problems. A possibility is that the hardware at Nintendo World was an earlier version that wasn’t tuned for sunlight. It’s also hard to extrapolate how the sensor bar will react in a person’s home from the experiences at the Nintendo World store. Still, this may be a concern for consumers, particularly given the wide variety of lighting environments that are found in the home. Other than the sensor bar, issue, the feedback from the actual gameplay was favorable overall.
Read More | Nintendo Forums