When I finally decided to buy an electric bike to replace my car, I knew I would need some powerful LED lights to keep me safe at night. I started with the basics, the tail light. Most of the time, when your on a bike here in Los Angeles, you have cars whizzing right past you just a few feet away and coming at you from the rear. That means the most important light is that rear tail light so it better get the quickly approaching drivers attention.
When I started looking around, most of the tail lights where all the same. Under powered and not that eye catching. Yes, they where LED lights, they where red, some flashed, but none of them screamed, look out. That was until I found the SuperFlash Stealth by Planet Bike. This light was different, it had a 1/2 watt Blaze LED light with a shaped lens and 2 Extreme LEDs with a visibility of up to a mile. When this thing is on, people can’t take their eyes off it. From the rear, it’s near blinding and from the side, it looks like a fireworks show. So, I bought two. One for the rear of my A2B Electric bike and one for the Wike Bike Trailer. The other cool thing about the light, is that its clear when off. It doesn’t standout or look ugly on the bike.
What do you get when you mix photovoltaic panles and LED bulbs into the side of your building? A zero dirty energy giant movie screen. This isn’t some concept or science fiction movie idea, its real and has already been designed and built in China. The company Greenpix a a group of architects and designers, have created this screen in Beijing China.
The Zero Energy Media Wall – is a groundbreaking project applying sustainable and digital media technology to the curtain wall of Xicui entertainment complex in Beijing, near the site of the 2008 Olympics. Featuring the largest color LED display worldwide and the first photovoltaic system integrated into a glass curtain wall in China, the building performs as a self-sufficient organic system, harvesting solar energy by day and using it to illuminate the screen after dark, mirroring a day’s climatic cycle.The project was designed and implemented by Simone Giostra & Partners, a New York-based office with a solid reputation for its innovative curtain walls in Europe and the US, with lighting design and façade engineering by Arup in London and Beijing.
For about $100 you too, can have a Vegas inspired birdhouse. Why would only humans make use of eco-friendly technology? Studio OOOMS designed a birdhouse with a solar panel on it’s roof. During the day sunlight feeds the solar panel , charging a small battery inside. At twilight the transparent stick will light up and cast a tiny light on your garden.
Ever fancied yourself as an amateur interior designer? Been dying to create some pretty amazing lighting effects that also double as a conversation piece?
You might want to check out the shattered light lamp, so called because it’s made from shattered glass, coated with a silicone and lined with white LED lights. The silicone gives it flexibility for you to bend and shape as you please – some have likened it to Play-Doh in terms of its pliability – while the shattered glass makes for some pretty interesting light effects.
The longer I stare at Habitat Hotel, the more I realize what an inspiring, albeit superfluous, idea it was. Created by Enric Ruis-Geli of Spain, the model of Habitat Hotel was exhibited in “New Spanish Architects” at the MoMA last year. While Enric heads up Cloud 9 Archictecture, his background is heavy in directing and set design for experimental theater. This past adds a spectacular quality to this model, now a permanent piece in MoMA’s collection.
Habitat Hotel is, however, a brightly lit model of a hotel, so it’s hard not to think Vegas. A Vegas hotel with smarts.
When you think of mushrooms, you think of dark, dank environments. I should know, as a child we grew some in our kitchen cupboard under the watchful eye of my mother. (Here’s a tip, kids: never complain of being bored, or there’s a chance you’ll be roped into “fun” experiments such as home mushroom cultivation.)
But now, a designer from Down Under has flipped this concept on its head. The mushroom floor lamp is the brainchild of Australian designer Simon Duff, whose innovative designs promise to illuminate any dark, dank environment. Embedded in the mushrooms gills are low wattage LED lights, which offer the user the ability to change color and intensify the light source. The good part is, not only can you create your own mood lighting, you’ll be doing so in an energy efficient way.
As we enter the environmental age, it’s interesting to witness changes in design and function. What will we create? What will we recycle? What will we do away with? Let’s consider that icon of Victorian living — the lampshade. Traditionally made from cloth, lace, glass — lampshades aren’t just old hat, they occasionally look like them, too.
In the future, according to Philips, LED bulbs will be so well designed that they’ll eradicate the need for any lamp covering whatsoever. Just check out some of these eye-catching designs. You can “adjust the color, brightness and tone of a bulb with simple, intuitive hand gestures, such as touching or twisting”.
What’s the best accessory for the modern green home office?
Designed by Yves Behar and more than three years in the making, the Leaf Light from Herman Miller is a sensually designed LED table lamp that, according to Behar, fuses “technology with humanity.” And while I would normally dismiss such an assessment as highly portentous, in this case I think it’s entirely fitting.
While most lights simply illuminate their surroundings (let’s face it: you turn it on and you turn it off, it either lights up the room or it doesn’t – there’s not a lot of gray area there), the Leaf actually enhances your personal space. Dimmable by a simple hand move, its thin, compact design allows for maximum lighting concepts: the lower part swivels 180 degrees, providing a wide range of local coverage, while the upper part can be folded down to light up your desk or raised up and aimed at the wall to create an ambient mood throughout the room.
Nick Foley, a New York industrial design student, has added another artistic light fixture to his portfolio. His latest design is an artistic hand-forged hollow steel tree that serves as the charging station for three urethane pear-shaped lights. He states, “Each pear contains ten ultra bright white LEDs, an autonomous charging circuit, and rare-earth magnets that allow it to be ‘picked’ from the tree and remain fully illuminated for over an hour.”
The design and concept are quite innovative and unique. I’m not sure of the practicality of plucking glowing bulbs from the tree rather than grabbing a flashlight, but I have to admit it would make quite a conversation piece. In addition, anytime you have the opportunity to use an art piece as a functional accessory, it gives you the best of both worlds.
If you’re like me, you could probably use a little extra light in your kitchen or bathroom. But if you’re like me, you’re probably not thrilled with the idea of calling someone to drill holes and connect wires in order to install them. Continue Reading / See Additional Photos
I can tell you one thing for sure: the only fire I want at my house this Christmas is the open one roasting the chestnuts. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that from 2000 to 2004, Christmas trees — both natural and artificial — were the first items ignited in 300 of the reported home fires. Furthermore, holiday decorative lighting directly caused an additional 170 home structure fires in the same period with various materials being the primary source of ignition. These fires caused deaths, injuries, and $5.5 million in property damage.