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We’ve posted about Phillips’ Ambilight (Wikipedia) real-time multicolor display backlighting system, and various DIY versions thereof, before (see below). If you’re not familiar with the idea, watch a few seconds of the embedded video, as it’s hard to appreciate the effect from still images. If you believe the hype, this kind of dynamic backlighting improves viewing by making it more “immersive” and reducing “backlight bleed.” In any case, it’s certainly cool-looking.

Adafruit recently posted this excellent step-by PC Ambilight clone from talented builder and writer Phillip Burgess. Naturally, Ladyada would like to sell you the parts, but it’s all open source and the components—a strand of WS2801 individually-addressable RGB leds, an Arduino, a power adapter, a USB cable, white reflective sheet stock, tape, and a few other odds and ends—are widely available. Arduino sketches and Processing code are free, natch, at Github. [Thanks, PT!]

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Sean Michael Ragan

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I write for MAKE, serve as Technical Editor for MAKE magazine, and develop original DIY content for Make: Projects.


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