I made a desklamp out of an LED bar and a reasonably-weighted vertical USB extension:


Run from computer

My system and its external wireless adaptor* are connected to a power switch box. When I shut down the system, I also turn off the power to the CPU and the power to the external wireless adaptor via this switch box.

Lately I’d been forgetting to turn off the power switch box, and thus, the adaptor. It wasn’t much power wasted – no more than a nightlight’s worth – but it bothered me.

Separately, I’ve lately been grabbing my battery-powered LED sheet music lights and using them as desk lamps for electronics work at this very desk, which uses up their batteries.

So: two solutions at once. USB extension cable with vertical port plugs into the unused back-of-system USB hub, which is separate internally to the system USB port my sound interface lives on. Computer doesn’t even have to be on to use the lamp; just turn on the external power switch box and the CPU’s USB ports get power without ever starting the CPU itself. So if the light is on, I know I’ve left the power box on again and need to turn it off.

Most of the time, the lamp lives behind the left monitor, where it’s out of the way but throwing enough light on the desk to serve as an indicator. But really I’m just pleased with how it looks, so you get a picture. ^_^

Oh, zouk part for the finale tunes set is about, oh, 50% done. Enough to have a yellow tag, not orange. Lots of timing edit work to do – because tunes on zouk are stupidly hard, particularly at 300 notes per minute (150bpm, but everything’s eight notes). So y’do what y’must.


*: External adaptor necessary because the Linux realtime** kernel works well only with a very limited number of network drivers, none of which are wireless because of reasons, and using essentially any Linux or WINE-translated wireless driver will defeat the RT kernel’s quasi-RT scheduling. So I use a supported card, which I then connect to the wireless adaptor. It’s crude, but effective.
**: Yes, yes, I know, it’s not really realtime, it’s … sorta realtime. Realtimey-wimey. (Real timey-wimey… ish.)