The Daily Lamp – It’s Only A Paper Moon!

Really now, all you need is an element, some paper, and a clip.  What happens then is called It’s Only A Paper Moon from London-based designer Kazuhiro Yamanaka.  Like so:




For the ultra-low-materialists out there, It’s Only A Paper Moon is pretty much nothing but a chunk of paper, a clamp base with a lead, and light source.  And, in case you were wondering, yes you can use your own paper:

The lamp simply consists of only three elements, a wooden peg, a piece of paper and a light bulb. A fan shaped paper can be rolled up to be clipped by the large peg to wrap around the bulb. Any type of paper, different colors, shapes, can be used for showing distinct appearances with different lighting effects. The lamp is carefully designed in order to balance the weight.

For all of you Saturday readers out there, here’s another version on the paper lamp from Kazuhiro, a paper tube with an LED inside, attached to the inside.  Clever?  Simple, that’s for sure!





Thanks, DesignBoom!

Did Variable Technologies Invent the Tricorder? Like, for Realzies?

For those of you under 20, or for those of you who have been living inside an anti-Star-Trek protective cloth and plastic diaper, in Star Trek the officers and technicians had these things called “tricorders.”  They looked like this:


This little handheld piece of imaginary engineering could do everything — it could detect life forms, it could do video and audio, images, it could record stuff, it could take medical analysis and readings…  it was like some kind of crazy high-tech iPhone for the USS Enterprise.  You can actually get the toy Tricorder on Amazon for ten bucks.  Hell, I always wanted one of these when I was of the age where you could still run around the neighborhood with toy guns and not get shot by the cops.  Remember those days?

Fast forward to the beginning of January of this year, 2013 — there is a company called Variable Technologies in Chattanooga, TN that makes this little device called the Node.  It’s a handheld sensor that connects with several apps for iPhone et al via Bluetooth 4 to do exactly what the original tricorder was supposed to do — take readings, scan things, record things, and analyze.  Node is made to have these little interchangeable sensors that attach to the home unit, which is handheld:


Node has all kinds of awesome modules:

  • NODE, an IMU (Inertial Measurement Unit) which is built-in to the device
  • CHROMA, a colorimeter
  • THERMA, a thermometer for surface temperature
  • CLIMA, for weather conditions
  • LUMA, a flashlight attachment
  • OXA, a gas sensor module

node-sensorsAll in all, this is a pretty cool little gadget!  I really hope this isn’t small-minded out of existence by people who think that anything useful that is also handheld must only come from the iPhone itself, including its sensors.  From the Node site, specifications on the Node handheld unit itself:


9 degrees-of-freedom motion engine
2 interchangeable module ports
Open API with all modules
long-range Bluetooth 4.0 Smart

Directly useful for:

Motion mapping for animation or physical therapy
Motion-based cues like telling when the washer stops or the door opens
Impact testing
Use as a gesture-based remote control
Multiple, simultaneous data streams…

…and some specifications — the IMU inside has 9 degrees of tracking!

Diameter: 1 inch (25.4mm)
Length: 3.27 inch (83 mm)
Weight: 45gPower:
Battery Life: 12 hr continuous use, 30+ days standby Rechargeable Li-Polymor Battery
Micro-USB ChargingCommunications:
Bluetooth 4.0 SmartUSB data communications256-bit encryption engine
Sensor Capabilities
3-axis accelerometer: up to +/-8g range, 0.061mg resolution3-axis magnetometer: up to +/-8 gauss range, 0.04 milli-gauss resolution
3-axis gyroscope: up to +/-2000 degrees-per-sec, 0.061 degrees-per-sec resolution
9-degrees-of-freedom orientation engine

Awesome.  Handheld sensing, here we come!  And stylish, too!  It certainly looks as though we won’t be disappointed by the Node, especially the price — it’s only $150 for the base Node with IMU and each sensor kit is only $75 bucks.  All of Node’s apps (Node is definitely app-driven) are all available in the App Store!


Thanks to MedGadget, an awesome blog, for the initial story!


The SEL – Sustainable Emergency Light

Jonathan Janke has created an emergency light source that is pretty cool – it’s chemically luminescent, creates no heat, is not affected by wind, and has the packaging material integrated into the design.  Meet the Sustainable Emergency Light:

The SEL is about as large as a large coffee mug, and creates about 24 hours of light.  From the image above you might notice the four capsule-looking things on the top – those are the chemical activators.  Once pushed, they add liquid to the lower container and create light.  One of my favorite aspects of this fixture is that once it’s reacted completely and no longer gives off light, you can mail it back to the manufacturer who will fill it again and mail it back.  The SEL uses a non-toxic chemical, and never expires if stored properly.  Pretty cool.

The green color of the chemical light emitted from the SEL reminds me of that scene in The Abyss with Ed Harris when he’s in the liquid breathing suit using light from a green chemical light trying to diffuse a nuclear warhead, trying to tell apart the difference between a white and yellow wire in the green light!

More of the Sustainable Emergency Light:

Thanks, Design Blog!

Soap – A Portable Light

That’s right – a bar of light, er, soap, wait, no, it’s a light.  It’s a light that looks like a bar of soap.  A Soap Light.  Jiyeon Ahn and Jieun Kim of the multidisciplinary design firm Luca 12:00 have created this handheld light, which, as you can imagine, fades up and out as you rub it in your hands.  Yeah, that’s right – and it sits in a soap dish looking holder, too.


Thanks, Yanko!

Hey, Can You Grab Me A Tube of… LIGHT?

We always talk about having a spray-on product that can erase stray beams of light in the Entertainment business, and my heart of hearts hopes that other industries experience the same problems.  Our product was always called “Rosco Beam-Stop,” or “GAM Beam-Away,” or even something crass like “Lee one-go-%$#@-yourself, stray beam of light.”  Yeah, we’re all adults here.

Vadim Kibardin’s design studio has produced something quite the opposite of stopping a beam with a spray of light.  In fact, if you can stretch your mind a little, can’t you see this product sitting next to the hair gel, toothpaste, window caulk, or tubes of mustard in your local what-have-you?


This is Kibardin’s LED Torch – an LED sourced flashlight of sorts that is integrated into a squeeze tube bottle with a cap.  It’s waterproof, it is either diffused (cap on) or concentrated (cap off, like a flashlight), and comes in the amber color or white.  You can set it upright on the cap-end, lie it on its side, or hang it from the pre-determined hanging holes in the top of the casing.  So, as far as form and function goes, what HASN’T Vadim’s studio considered with this lamp?  Did I mention the source is hermetically sealed, and thus waterproof?


Vadim Kibardin’s studio has some text posted about the LED Torch on his site – a blurb from the LED Torch product page:

The necessity of self-inclusive lighting instrument is dictated by the situations where the opportunity to connect to a conventional power supply network is absent: travel, holidays, public and individual lighting in cases of accidents and emergencies, decorative lights, fashionable accessories or children’s toys. Active entrenchment of modern technologies, especially super economical ones, bright, different-colored micro-lamps (LED), with a working life of more than 100 000 hours, became the reason of many serious changes. A revolution in the idea of what these instruments should be like took place in connection with the appearance of such illuminators.

Thanks for this product, Vadim and gang. I love the design!