Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

LED

A rendering of one of the two-dimensional LEDs

In regular microchips, work is performed via the movement of electrons within the chip. Thanks to the recent creation of the thinnest-ever LEDs, however, such chips may one day be able to use light instead of electrons, saving power and reducing heat. Of course, those LEDs could also just be used as a really flat form of lighting, in any number of applications.  Read More

Gallium nitride transistors enabled the compact design of this 2090 lumen retrofit LED lam...

Although known for long life and low energy consumption, the LED uses a DC power supply, or driver, to overcome its sensitivity to current fluctuations, and it’s the high-frequency, high-speed switching transistors in this driver that’s made the LED so costly for use in large-scale commercial applications dominated by fluorescent and incandescent lighting. But that’s about to change. Fraunhofer researchers are developing a new, more economical means of making the high-performance gallium nitride transistors needed for the LED’s high-efficiency driver.  Read More

The app-based system determines the shopper's location via the flickering of the overhead ...

Wondering where your local supermarket keeps its whole wheat flour? Soon, an app on your smartphone may be able to guide you to it – with a little help from the store's overhead LED lights, and technology developed by Philips.  Read More

bottlelight-festooned wine bottles, helping to class things up a little

There's an old camping trick, for people who don't want to bother getting a lantern: just stick a flashlight up against the bottom of a plastic pop bottle, turn the flashlight on, then bask in the bottle's glow. Now you can do the same sort of thing with wine bottles, using suckUK's bottlelight.  Read More

The Confession Machine uses UV LEDs to print disapearing messages onto photosensitive pape...

Israeli artist Liat Segal has created a device that uses light to print fading messages onto photosensitive paper. The Confession Machine uses ultraviolet (UV) LEDs that are programmed to switch on and off at certain intervals in order to print people's confessions onto paper coated with a UV sensitive pigment. Then they disappear.  Read More

Joy Jackets were built as part of Cadbury's 'Joyville' campaign (Photo: Akio-Style)

One of the less practical examples of wearable technology we've seen of late is the "Joy Jacket" – a garment designed to convey a visual statement of happiness when the wearer consumes a certain chocolatier's product.  Read More

This near-infrared photo shows the invisible IR LED's on the Leddar in action

Leddar, short for LED Detection and Ranging, is a new type of detection and ranging sensor that uses LEDs to detect objects and determine their distance. While the Leddar is low resolution, it is also low cost, and it may find new applications in vehicles, traffic management, robotics and safety. Read on for our hands-on review.  Read More

A rendering of the GE Chandelier as it will be mounted high above PlayhouseSquare in Cleve...

PlayhouseSquare in Cleveland's historic theater district is erecting what is claimed as the world's largest outdoor crystal chandelier. With a height of 20 ft (6 m) and comprising some 4,200 crystal pieces, the biggest surprise is that General Electric, which is designing the chandelier, believes it will stand up to Cleveland's extreme weather.  Read More

The LightSpur in use

Anyone who runs or cycles after the sun goes down will tell ya, it's vitally important to make sure that you're visible to motorists. Nathan's LightSpur is one of the latest products designed to provide you with that visibility, and it looks like it draws equal inspiration from Tron and A Fistful of Dollars.  Read More

The SmartCharge LED lightbulb

When the lights go out due to a power outage at night, you'll probably have to spend the next few minutes fumbling around in the dark hoping to lay your hands on a nearby torch or trying to remember where you put the candles and matches. If only the lights could stay on for a while after the power was cut. The SmartCharge LED bulb has been developed with the simple aim of ensuring that users are never left in the dark again. It includes technology that's able to determine whether someone has just turned off the light at the switch, or there's been an actual power failure. If the latter, the bulb will provide users with hours of continuous light.  Read More

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