When you close your car door, the lights may go out immediately, fade or they may stay on interminably while you stand there wondering if you closed the door all the way. Bill Bowden has devised a gadget that lets you take control of your interior lights. Bowden’s Automobile Interior Lights Fader lets you determine whether the lights go out right away, fade or stay on for a few seconds. You can even program the fade times to fast-on, slow-off or vice versa. The device’s circuit is intended for cars that have a door switch that supplies a ground to the interior lights with one side of the lights connected to the positive side of the battery through an appropriate fuse. With a few modifications, the device can also be used without a door switch.
The first vehicle I had with the delayed off was a 97 GMC van. I was unaware of this feature and looked all over the place to find how to turn the lights off. Finally I read the owners manual (instructions are only for people who do not know what they are doing) and it mentioned the delay. So I closed the door and timed the light, 13 seconds. Only after doing that several times, did I feel confident to just walk away.
Of course when one of the kids left a dome light on, no one noticed until a neighbor phoned about 4 hours later, but that is a story for another day. I like that your device allows the owner to reassume control. What a novel idea.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
In a bid to boost the viability of lithium-based electric car batteries, a team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has developed a chemistry that could possibly double an EV’s driving range while cutting its battery cost in half.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.