Computers & Mobile Energy & Sustainability

A Google engineer has developed a solar-powered data display for Google calendar information to use as signage in Google’s offices outside of their conference rooms (to display meeting schedules). It uses an ultra lower-power Cholesteric LCD display which can operate on energy generated from indoor light. Aaron Spangler, the engineer, claims on the video that Google uses six reams of paper, in 2200 conference rooms, every single day. So, given that, and the people-power required to change and update the signs, this is a significant time and money saver. Besides the Cholesteric display, the unit uses a PIC-based MCU and a Xbee wireless module.

Radish – Indoor Solar-powered Calendar Display

12 thoughts on “The Radish, an indoor-solar-powered data display

  1. People at google dont have laptops to look at what rooms are booked and to book rooms? I work at a fortune 50 company and we just use outlook with rooms to see who has a room, when, and book it when we want it. Seams a much simpler solution to just use the laptop you have with you.

  2. This is a great project that has some interesting characteristics — very low power use, indoor solar with capacitor storage, and an unusual LCD display.

    Any chance that Make could help the rest of us get information on the parts list/sources and or a schematic?

    I’d really like that. Thanks.

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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

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