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.
A middle school team from Rochester, Mich., has again nabbed the grand prize in the annual international Future City Competition, which drew students from 37 regions of the United States, as well as from England and China.
The word “smart” is becoming the dumbest word around. It has been applied to almost every device and system in our homes. In addition to smartphones and smart meters, we now hear about smart clothing and smart shoes, smart lights, smart homes, smart buildings, and every trendy city today has its smart city project. Just because it has a computer inside and is connected to the Web, does not mean it is smart.
Are you being paid enough? Do you want a better job? According to a recent survey Manpower released just before Engineers Week, employers and engineers don't see eye-to-eye about the state of US engineers' skills and experience.
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