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Showing posts from June, 2009

What NOT TO design

This is an excerpt from TOI of 10-June.
"Back in 1960's, American space agency NASA was faced with a major dilemma. Astronauts needed a pen that would write in the vacuum of space. NASA got cracking into developing the $1.5 million gravity immune 'astronaut pen'.
At the same time, the Russians too were faced with the same dilemma. However, they used a pencil instead!"

How very relevant. It is important that we designers do not lose track of the solution and go only after technology for technology's sake. We should use technology for Solution's sake.

LED Nightlight Fades Out in a Few Short Weeks | Made by Monkeys | Blog on Design News

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LED Nightlight Fades Out in a Few Short WeeksApril 15, 2009 In theory, a LED light should last for ten years or so, unlike the typical 4W incandescent lamps used in night lights that seem to burn out in only a few months. But as engineer and founder of the website Discover Circuits Dave Johnson discovered, this Chinese-made unit from Costco (left side in photo) didn’t last but 12 weeks.“I bought a pack of three of these night lights, made by Elumina Lighting Technologies, for about $15. The unit has a pushbutton switch to toggle between settings (dim and bright) and a CdS photocell that turns off the device during the day. Inside are three white LEDs, wired in series. When I first plugged the device in, it seemed to emit an acceptable amount of light. But in a short time, the light gradually faded until it was virtually useless.This has happened to me several times with other inexpensive LED lights. I think some manufacturers from China are using inferior phosphors inside the LED assem…