Anyone who doubts, ask my wife: I’m a sucker for light bulbs. Every time we walk into a home improvement store or Ikea, I get what I’m looking for then head straight for the lighting isle.
Ikea has some of the best Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) I’ve seen, but they’re a long drive from my house, and they’re still CFLs. CFLs get dimmer over time, and I hate the “hum” that many (most?) of them emit. Besides, they still get hot, which means they’re still losing energy in the form of heat. Not as much as incandescents, mind you, but even still. I want a light, not a heater.
That’s where LEDs come in. LEDs, as you probably know, are Light Emitting Diodes. According to Wikipedia, a diode is a two-terminal electronic component that conducts electric current only in one direction. Back in high school I was told that long ago some diodes were observed to emit photons (light) as an unintended side-effect. These diodes were coated with a dark paint to keep the light from escaping until some smart person decided to take advantage of the light emission and use the diodes not in their traditional role, but as a source of light, and LEDs were born. I can’t find a citation for that, but it makes a good story nonetheless.
We have LEDs in phones, flashlights, automobiles, and even screw-in bulbs to replace current incandescents and CLFs. That’s amazing. We can now get the equivalent light output of a 60 watt incandescent out of a 3 watt LED, how cool is that?!
Back to the Tradeshow…
A marketing guy for OSRAM-OS contacted me (and gave me a cool travel mug) to let me know about LightFair 2010, a tradeshow being held in Las Vegas Nevada May 12th through 14th, 2010 that is being touted as “blend[ing] continuing education courses with innovative products ranging from high-end design to cutting-edge technology”.
If you want to go, a 3-day package is going to cost you $575. That’s a tad bit North of my budget. Lucky for you, OSRAM-OS is hosting a Virtual TradeShow online at http://ledlight.osram-os.com/lightfair2010.
The show seems to be aimed at integrators, not homeowners and hobbyists such as myself, but it’ll be cool to see some of the advancements in the industry!