And some vids, to summarise what I’ve been up to for a while

I’ve been working away at some prototypes. The glow fans are motion responsive, with a 3-axis accelerometer controlling the colour and brightness based off how they are moved. 10 LEDs, so decently bright too.

I’m working away at making these good enough to be sellable. Right now, the cost for each would be silly and the reliability… well, let’s just say the testing by tatjna & tieke revealed a few issues, but that’s what prototypes are for:

And here’s a better video of the Mitochondrion, my uber-glow staff. This was taken last year and since then I’ve completely rewritten the code, squeezing in over a hundred patterns. Still, there’s some fundamental flaws with the approach I’ve taken, so a version four is on the cards.

12 thoughts on “And some vids, to summarise what I’ve been up to for a while

          1. Laser beams

            Random technical question: are you mounting the LEDs out towards the edge so that they illuminate directly? Or mounting towards the centre and using, eg, fibre optic to carry the light out to where you want it? It probably doesn’t matter much with LEDs (low mass), but if you want lasers bright enough to set things on fire the mass would become more noticable…

            Anyway the obvious thing, to me, would be to make POV patterns that are more than just concentric circles. Eg, some of the small ones make patterns like faces and so on. For it to work right you’d probably either have to spin it at a fairly fixed speed, or have a spinning-speed sensor of some sort (rotational accelerometer?). And at least from what I saw in the videos you’d need a bit more light for longer persistence (but perhaps that’s a limitation of the camera frame rate).


          2. Re: Laser beams

            The LEDs are currently mounted on the edge of the boards, pointing outways and shining along tubular light guides. This, frankly, sucks arse. They get damaged, it’s a very high labour way to do it, and they end up either mismatched in colour or needing lots more electronics to look after them.

            So the next model will have one big LED inside the box and the light distributed by fibre-optics. At least, that’s the plan, I just need to work out how to make it work

            And POV is nice, but needs faster and more regular spinning, along with a sensor to detect the spin and some code to try to produce a stationary image. MEM gyros are getting good, but possibly not good enough, yet. Whether anyone can spin fast enough and stably enough for the POV effect to work, I don’t know, but I want to find out.

      1. Yeah, I’m currently thinking that the Mark 2 will have a box that’s not entirely full of expensive electronics, and something else that I’d like to squeeze in there would be a microphone and the gubbins required to make them sound responsive.

        Although getting a good response from music is annoyingly hard, just as Ranty Dave.

        1. In the vid of you with the staff the times when there’s a blue blur on the inner line is quite charming. If you could have that inner line pulsing as beat responsive with the outer line motion responsive but also directing the amount of brightness throughout it would look cool.

    1. Umm… yeah, from this view it’s hard to see all the questionable design choices. This stuff is not bad, but far from where I want it to be.

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