Monday Afternoon – The Percocet Addition!

I’m still healing from my surgery on Friday, which apparently went awesomely.  Shoulder surgery means a few things – stiffness and pain, and pain medicine!  I am at home recuperating, missing my students, and trying to get work done.  I hope that you’re all having a great day out there today!

I have a bunch of links to share with you – I’ve found some incredible stories lately!

  • What You Need to Know about Obama’s Budget and Energy
    this is an interesting read, more into the way that Obama is treating money and energy in his new budget (from GigaOm)
  • Do Gadget Lights Harm Your Health?
    there seem to be a lot of this type of story coming out lately – make up your own mind, there is a lot of contradictory evidence in both directions of this argument (from PCWorld)
  • “Light Wall,” by Acrylicize and Jump Studios
    a cool project from the website Enlighter – fellow lighting blogger Mitja Prelovsek posted this article recently, on a brilliant project!
  • DIY Ikea Slide Projector Lamp
    I think every lighting nerd who lived within a thousand miles of an Ikea has one version or another of their little PC spot light.  Their package came with a few glass texture gobos, some steel gobos, and some dichroic glass.  This project on Make Magazine‘s website shows how to turn that Ikea projector into a cool slide projector!
  • Lots of Hot Water from Small-Scale Parabolic Solar
    this is an interesting article about a water heating solar technology that produces a high amount of kilowatts for what it’s collecting.  What might be even better than the initial article is reading through the comments of people who picked up a small typo in  the original poster’s article.
  • Wave-Shaped Aragon Convention Center is Flooded with Daylight
    read this article about a convention center’s daylighting design from Zaragoza, Spain.  VERY cool!

A Quick Note about “Personal” – My Contribution to Your Sanity

I write about a lot of topics on – some of them have to do with my personal life, for example, my recent rotator cuff surgery.  Sometimes I ramble on the site (actually I do that a lot!), both on topic about lighting and off-topic about my life as a lighting designer, professor, writer, and general busy dude.  I do try to keep the personal rammle-jammle down to a trickle, but sometimes I feel I just have to

I’ve been trying to tag the posts where I ramble about my personal life or personal career with the words “Personal” in the title – this way if you’re a dedicated reader and don’t care to read my personal posts, you can filter them out in your RSS reader!

On a personal tip – my shoulder surgery went well – the surgeon said that he went in and cleaned up my shoulder joint to promote healing.  Anything’s better than daily pain, that’s for damned sure!

I hope everyone is having a great Saturday!

Upcoming Appearances!

I’m doing a fair amount of traveling over the next handful of months – some guest artist appearances, some conference appearances, and maybe I’ll just go streaking across the quad somewhere in America!  LET’S GO STREAKING!

Ha, ha.  Moving on.

So tomorrow I’m having some surgery on my torn rotator cuff and shoulder injury – I’m going to be recovering for the next few weeks, so when you see me at USITT I might still be sore.  If you slap my right shoulder, I might punch your right face.  Don’t take it offensively though, it’ll just be a reaction to the pain, you know how it goes!  So I’ll be sitting on the couch, recovering, and generally watching a lot of Family Guy.  Send me some good juju today (Thursday, Feb. 23) around 230pm!

SETC 2011
I’ll be at the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) in Atlanta, Georgia next week.  I’m the guest lighting designer judge for the 2011 Student Design Competition, which takes place Wednesday through Saturday, March 2-4, 2011.  After there, it’s on to Charlotte!

USITT 2011
I’m presenting on a panel at the United States Institute for Theatre Technologies (USITT) National Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina – March 9-12, 2011.  The panel, called Marketing in the Digital World and Social Media for the Lighting Professional, is with Andrea Bilkey from Texas Tech and Justin Lang from  “It’s gonna be tight, y’all!”

LFI 2011
I’m going to be walking the floor at LightFair 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania this year too!  I had such a great time at the 2010 LightFair Conference covering the floor that I want to get back this year and see what there is to be seen on the architectural lighting scene!  You see how I punned there?!

So, what do you think?  Spontaneous Tweetups in each and every one of these cities???  Let me know if you’re gonna be somewhere by dropping me a line on Twitter (@JimOnLight) or via the contact form.  If you know my cell, then send me a text!  I hope to see you all there!

Melting, Burning, and Generally Obliterating Stuff with the Power of the Sun

I always find that I discover cool stuff when I am teaching about it – right now, for example, I’m lecturing to my introductory Stage Lighting classes about reflection, refraction, the Index of Refraction, reflectance, normal angles, and all of that kind of stuff.  I love it, I’m a nerd to the Nth degree.  I’m also lucky that my research karma is good!

Something I find quite sexy is capturing solar rays for the purpose of just destroying stuff in a non-military way.  Yes, I’m one of those campers who loves campfires for the sheer awesome power of them.  I came across a few videos of people harnessing the awesome power of our Sun into a small few centimeter-square area for the purposes of, well, burning stuff.  I have two examples – one is an expensive solar capture device that focuses a few square meters of sun into an area of an inch, and the other is a homemade solar reflector made from a satellite dish.  Even though the cheaper one is cheaply made (I mean comparatively, not offensively), it harnesses some amazing solar power!

Check out this first video – a lab environment, a huge mirror, and thousands of degrees of sunlight:

Here’s the second video, a homemade SOLAR DEATH RAY!


Thanks Hack-N-Mod!

Cleaning Solar Panels – Yeah, There’s a Gadget for That

If you read the news with regards to lighting, power grid, and renewable energy, you’re going to read a lot about solar.  Solar companies, solar panels, solar panel efficiency, and all kinds of other stuff that has to do with using the sun to generate electricity.

Here’s something wacky – nobody ever talks about cleaning their solar panels!  I mean, it’s probably not something you have to do each weekend, but as grime, dirt, and pollution build up on them, they do need to be cleaned off in order to efficiently capture the sun’s rays.  German company Schletter GmbH has just released news of their crazy new photovoltaic power washer for exactly this problem that nobody knew we had – solar panel cleaning!

I’ll be honest – most of the people I know who either manage or own PV installations just clean them with a freaking hose and some tap water.  But Schletter is going to be changing that in April 2011.

Hold onto your horses, folks.  This thing is a solar panel cleaning party animal!

Wow. Now THAT is some solar cleaning! I think. At least that’s what I’ve heard. All I can really say is that I didn’t invent this thing, but it seems cool! Probably a lot easier than the 20-foot-long handle with a carwashing brush on the end, huh?

Thanks, CleanTechnica!

Aura Рby Beatrice Durandard and Oc̩ane Delain

Designers Beatrice Durandard and Océane Delain have brought something new via something old to the market – a huge ratan LED lighting fixture that has a serious presence.  Meet Aura:

The designers have woven flexible LED strips into the frame of this handmade ratan fixture.  Look at the presence of that thing!

Whether it’s mounted in a chandelier-esque fashion or you mount it as an indirect illuminator, the Aura fixture is pretty beautiful.  It’s the kind of design that I looked for in Sweden when I was at KTH.  This lamp is elegant without being obnoxious – a great addition to any large room.

Check out more images – this thing is beautiful!  Also, check out Beatrice Durandard’s website – I couldn’t find one for Océane Delain, unfortunately.

Thanks, DesignBoom!

XBox 360 Kinect + DMX = 100% Awesome

I saw this amazing video on Hack N’ Mod about turning an XBox 360 Kinect into a DMX lighting control device.

Of course I said “SAY WHAAAT?” to myself ever so gently.  Can you imagine this with a full lighting rig?  Right now, it’s just being done with two green LEDs.

Check out the video!

Kinect + Touch Designer DMX Light/Laser Control from Phil Reyneri on Vimeo.

Hack the world!  Thanks, Hack-N-Mod!

Students Get Free Amazon Prime?! That’s CRAZY!

Is this light related?       No.
Is it awesome related?  YES.


STUDENTS GET FREE AMAZON PRIME MEMBERSHIPS! This is normally at least 80 bucks, and I know for a fact I’ve saved thousands of dollars in shipping.  THOUSANDS.

Go check out Amazon’s free Prime membership for students!  DO IT!  GO!

Vanessa Hordies’ Night Night

I’ve really been digging getting back into researching fixtures, lighting systems, and interesting designs of lighting lately!  It feels good to be able to get back to the initial idea behind – sharing cool information about light.  WHAT A CONCEPT!

Check out this new fixture from designer Vanessa Hordies – it’s called Night Night:

Night Night is an interesting concept for a sleepy-time lamp – when you flip over the lamp itself, a timer for 15 minutes resets itself, giving the user about 15 minutes to fall asleep.  That’s about the perfect amount of time to fall asleep.  WAIT A MINUTE!  THIS MUST BE ON PURPOSE!

(that’s sarcasm.  oh yeah.)

Vanessa Hordies does have a website, but there’s not much there but an info email and a picture of the Night Night.

Thanks DesignBoom!

The Last Glass Eye Maker in Britain

Ok – you must take a few minutes and watch this video – it’s about the last glass eye craftsman in the UK.  This story talks about craft, skill, commitment to his customer base, and is just a very intimate video.  Check it out:

The Glass Eye Maker from Tomas Leach on Vimeo.

Thanks Yatzer!