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Lighting

With most of us in the developed world more concerned about the flow of electricity to power our computers, TVs and all manner of other wonders of the modern age, it’s easy to forget the massive impact resulting from one of the first widespread public uses of electricity – the humble incandescent light bulb. With a large proportion of the world’s population still lacking reliable access to electricity, the GravityLamp hopes to bring the benefits of environmentally friendly artificial light to the developing world. Read More
As if cyclists didn't have enough choices to illuminate themselves at night, we now have one more. Joining the lighted helmets, belts, backpacks, wheel lights, and plain old bike lights are Realflex arm and leg wraps. Read More
Fluorescent lights are one of those things that you see everywhere, but that nobody likes. They flicker, they hum, they produce a rather unattractive light, plus they’re fragile and contain toxic substances. They may also be on their way out – scientists from North Carolina’s Wake Forest University have created a new form of lighting that they say could be used in the same large-scale applications as fluorescent bulbs, but that lacks their shortcomings. Read More
The common thing amongst the various smart light bulbs we’ve seen recently, such as the Lumen, Philips hue, LIFX and INSTEON, is that all the enabling wireless technology is built into the bulbs themselves. This means that when the bulb inevitably fails, you’re faced with replacing the whole expensive kit and caboodle. Spark overcomes this problem by separating the expensive wireless components from the bulb, thereby allowing a standard bulb to be connected to the internet. Read More
Zurich’s Micasa Lab, the team responsible for the iRock and Cocoon 1, has developed yet another off-the-wall concept with the Nebula 12. Like the art of Berndnaut Smilde, the Nebula 12 concept produces indoor clouds, but Micasa Lab has gone one step further by using meteorological data so that it provides a representation of the forecast weather. Read More
This is a charming idea. The Good Night Lamp is actually a set of table lamps that you distribute among friends or family. The lamps communicate remotely so that as a lamp is turned on or off by its owner, that action is replicated in the others, giving illuminating little insights into the comings and goings of loved ones – even those on the other side of the world. Read More
The lounges and lobbies of San Francisco's W Hotel have taken a turn for the futuristic, incorporating variable tint "dynamic glass" courtesy of California-based start-up View. View Dynamic Glass, as the company calls its particular brand, alters in tint to reduce the amount of heat and light passing through. Tint can be changed on demand (with an iPhone app, if you like, GigaOM reports); or the process can be automated – allowing View to dub its technology an "intelligent glass system." Read More
Net zero: put together, they're two of the buzzwords of contemporary building design. Sometimes the phrasing's a little different. ZNE, or zero net energy, is one variation; zero-energy building is another. They're all the same thing, though: buildings designed to offset their energy consumption over the course of a year, every year. Work has commenced on one such project, a 444-student primary school on Staten Island, New York, designed by architects at SOM and engineers at AKF. Read More
Just last month we looked at the LIFX Wi-Fi enabled, multi-color LED light bulb that could be controlled via a smartphone. With 16 days still to go, the Kickstarter project has exceeded its US$100,000 funding goal 13-fold, suggesting there might just be a market for these things. Looking to claim its own slice of this pie, Philips has just flicked the switch on its own somewhat similar offering called hue. Read More
With the increasing focus on sustainable urban transport comes an increasing call for proper safety infrastructure and products. We've recently seen LED bicycle helmets, and now a company called Light Bohrd has developed LED helmets and skateboards for commuters that use their feet for pushing rather than pedaling. Read More
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