Minneapolis maker Michael Krumpus, who also sells the EZ-Expander in the Maker’s Market, created this lovely mood lamp made out of LEDs, an Arduino Duemilanove, and glass vials he bought from the Twin Cities’ legendary Ax-Man surplus store.

This is a mood lamp I build using 16 LEDs of different colors and small glass vials. The square bottoms of the vials look a lot like glass block, and the glass diffuses and scatters the light in beautiful ways. The software shows random patterns of light and the brightness of each LED can vary — they aren’t simply “on” or “off”.

The Arduino code is pretty complex because it implements PWM (pulse-width modulation) for all 16 LEDs. The Arduino board only has 5 PWM-capable pins, so providing PWM for all 16 pins is accomplished purely in the code. The lamp randomly displays different lighting patterns and can be really mesmerizing.


John Baichtal

John Baichtal

My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal