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Fly searchlight

Make nuisance raiders easy to track
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A minature replica of a 1940s mobile searchlight, with motion detectors and a small but powerful light source. Tracks and illuminates small flies as they meander irritatingly around your room. Particularly useful for target re-acquisition after a failed swatting attempt.

Not particularly necessary for big, noisy bluebottles, but excellent for fruit flies and other small, quiet insects whose flight path seems to invoke Brownian motion and hence makes me lose track of them.

david_scothern, Jun 18 2017

Vickers QF 3.7-inch AA gun https://en.wikipedi.../QF_3.7-inch_AA_gun
Quality [8th of 7, Jun 18 2017]

the right L. E. D.s httAs://www.nightse...uorescence-florida/
although a few decimal places maybe needed. [wjt, Jun 22 2017]

[link]






       Excellent [+].   

       Can it have an accessory kit of four scaled-down Vickers QF 3.7-inch AA guns ?   

       <link>
8th of 7, Jun 18 2017
  

       What's needed, shirley, is also a miniature electric Spitfire that can scramble from its charging dock and intercept the fly. There'd be no need for miniature guns (sorry, [8th]), since encounters between flies and propellers invariably end badly for the fly.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 18 2017
  

       Activate lasers!
AusCan531, Jun 18 2017
  

       yeah good +
xandram, Jun 19 2017
  

       I'm imagining what a moth might do, if caught by that searchlight beam. Perhaps the light should be a laser, low power on scanning, but higher power after acquiring a target. You have to clear the moth bodies piled up against the light emitter somehow....
Vernon, Jun 19 2017
  

       This should be possible to do with laser pointers - so, you could have laser pointers sited at strategic points around the room all directed at the fruitfly. This would look impressive and the multiple lasers may be enough to stun the fruitfly. The risk of laser beams waving about temporarily (or permanently) blinding people in the room is a small price to pay.
hippo, Jun 19 2017
  

       This is just going to start an arms race, where the survivors breed ever peskier flies. Does no one think long term?   

       Clearly a political solution is needed. We must become united with our enemy and be at peace. Genetic combination, as per the trail blazed by Dr. Seth Brundle, is the only way. Once some bugs are worked out of the technique, the potential for the creation of a superior species is apparent.
RayfordSteele, Jun 19 2017
  

       Wasn't there an idea around here somewhere for a mini AA laser system complete with image tracking and single or multiple lasers to fry the flies/mosquitos?   

       You could style it after the Centurion C-RAM or other similar systems - the CIWS component of Iron Dome, etc.
Custardguts, Jun 19 2017
  

       The flight pattern of an insect has characteristics. If you could also adequately detect the environmental circumstances, you could establish a framework of some amount of likelihood influence. Identifying the species of fly would give a second set of likelihood influence. You'd quite likely find that the position and future position of the fly is not exactly but quite likely mostly predictable, given how good flies are at stabilised gyro-assisted balanced flying.   

       Look at the flight patterns of butterflies, for example (but the same applies to houseflies and bluebottles, etc). They have specific patterns depending on the species. Nymphalidae such as Red Admiral, Tortoiseshell and Painted Lady are strong and direct flyers, Red Admiral and Painted Lady particularly will fly in fairly straight lines up and down an open glade area in trees, and land fairly near where they took off, each trip being nearly the same as the previous. Comma are more exploratory, but do the same - take off, fly a few ups and downs, then back to the same area, but their flight is modulated slightly more by a cyclic oscillation, but only slightly. Small White butterflies are not very repetitive, and appear to float all over the place, but this is a cyclic modulation, modulated with a complex multiple low frequency oscillator input. Each species has a characteristic flight pattern. Of course, this is over-ridden by whatever the fly or butterfly is influenced by such as spotting something to land on to rest, or something it detects it can feed on, or a good place to lay eggs, or another compatible fly.
Ian Tindale, Jun 19 2017
  

       Very interesting. How does that assist in killing them ?
8th of 7, Jun 19 2017
  

       I'm astonished that [Ian] managed to not use the word "stochastic" in that annotation
hippo, Jun 20 2017
  

       //how does that assist in killing them?//   

       By adding some prediction into the targetting algorithm, and thereby extending effective range presumably.
Custardguts, Jun 20 2017
  

       My grandfather taught me a trick (but it only works in houses with low ceilings or tall residents): 3/4 fill a jar or glass with warm water, add detergent, cover and shake - make a good "head" of foam. Sneak up below a fly on the ceiling, and slowly raise the uncovered jar toward the fly. Because flies "take off" vertically downwards for 2-3 inches before flying off, they will usually fly straight into the foam, get trapped and quickly die.   

       Of course this technique could be adapted for a laser- guided CNC rig, but where's the fun in that?
sofacrat, Jun 21 2017
  

       Cool. Another neat factoid, (just based on personal childhood observation), is that flies are blind directly in front of themselves, so if one is at rest you can slowly poke it in the face. Since they can not take-off backwards, with a little practice it is possible to just raise and lower your finger at the right speed to trap them when close enough.   

       Not really sure what made me try touching that first fly's face as a kid. Prolly pissed me off in a past life or something.   

       I wonder: Can flys and mosquitoes be blinded by a laser? Do they attempt to fly afterwards?   

       There is a product on the market that can scan an environment with a laser, and save it as a reference. A re- scan can detect changes (fly). This gives the targets position. The rest is light pointer/pilot blinding process.   

       Probably works with helicopters, too.
Ling, Jun 22 2017
  

       I think that weapons designed to cause blindness are prohibited by the Geneva Convention.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       So how do you account for the fact that Mick Jagger is allowed to go out in public without a burkha, then ?
8th of 7, Jun 22 2017
  

       //I think that weapons designed to cause blindness are prohibited by the Geneva Convention.//   

       Are dead people "blind"?
Ling, Jun 22 2017
  

       A brief experiment involving Hillary Clinton and a standard Snellen chart tends to indicate that the answer to that question is "Yes".
8th of 7, Jun 22 2017
  

       //Another neat factoid, (just based on personal childhood observation), is that flies are blind directly in front of themselves, so if one is at rest you can slowly poke it in the face. Since they can not take-off backwards//   

       [2fries], I hate to do this, but I feel honour-bound to point out that both of those facts are incorrect, as per numerous sources, such as the one below (just Google "can flies take off backwards?"). One of these days you'll say something that's true. One of these days even I might.   

       "For example, the videos showed that if the descending swatter—actually, a 14-centimeter-diameter black disk, dropping at a 50-degree angle toward a fly standing at the center of a small platform—comes from in front of the fly, the fly moves its middle legs forward and leans back, then raises and extends its legs to push off backward. When the threat comes from the back, however, the fly (which has a nearly 360-degree field of view and can see behind itself) moves its middle legs a tiny bit backwards. With a threat from the side, the fly keeps its middle legs stationary, but leans its whole body in the opposite direction before it jumps."
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       Can some of the LEDs' wavelengths be 320-400 nm?
wjt, Jun 22 2017
  

       Yes, they can. Why?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       ^^ Grocers' Apos'trophe' !
8th of 7, Jun 22 2017
  

       //[2fries], I hate to do this, but I feel honour-bound to point out that both of those facts are incorrect, as per numerous sources, such as the one below (just Google "can flies take off backwards?"). One of these days you'll say something that's true.//   

       I guess a bit more research needs to be done on houseflies then because you 'can' poke them in the face, and if you raise and lower your finger at just the right speed they will 'jump' underneath it and become trapped.   

       Hours of fun as a kid. I would let the flies go after, and my brother would pull their wings off and turn them into 'walks'.   

       //^^ Grocers' Apos'trophe' !// Where???? I'll get my swat.   

       But //Can some of the LEDs' wavelengths be 320-400 nm?// contains only one perfectly placed apostrophe ("Can the wavelengths of the LEDs be..." --> "Can some of the LEDs' wavelengths be...").   

       In fact, [wjt]'s apostrophe is fine upstanding representative of correct punctuation.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       'tain't.   

       'Thought we agreed that pluralizing and possessifying model numbers and acronyms is best accomplished by preapostrophysying the 's', eg: M16's, 1970's, LED's.   

       Arguably, of course, acronyms are self-pluralizing; "light emitting diodes" --> "LED" ; QED.
FlyingToaster, Jun 22 2017
  

       hmm maybe we were only able to poke female flies in the face.   

       From Insect Vision: "Often the density of the facets is greatest in certain parts of the eye - those parts that are most often used for more accurate vision. Similarly, in humans, the density of sensory cells in the retina declines away from the central fovea toward the edges of the visual field, which is why the edge of your visual field is so fuzzy. For the same reason, one can often sex flies by the size of their compound eyes - male flies have larger eyes that almost meet in the middle of the face, since they need keener vision to help them spot females!"   

       Did any of those videos show what a fly does when the swatter is coming from directly in front and slightly beneath the fly?   

       I bet not.   

       Hmm. So, you are suggesting that the plural of LED (light emitting diode) is also LED (light emitting diodes), and therefore it would be possessified the same way whether referring to one or many LED(s)?   

       I would have to disagree. If I have one LED, and someone gives me another LED, then I will wonder why. But I will also have two LEDs, not two LED, as far as I'm concerned.   

       So, if my two LEDs were both red, then my LEDs' wavelengths would be red.   

       As for 1970's (as in "during the 1970's")- ugh. I don't mean the decade (though it wasn't very good, really), but the apostrophe. What exactly is the apostrophe doing there? Is it meant to be representing "ie" (as in "seventIEs"? And if so, what's become of the "y" in "seventy"? And, if you use that apostrophe non-possessively, how do you make sense of "He was born in the 1970's, but it was the 1960's music that influenced him."?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       So I watched all of the videos on the subject and it turns out that flies rely on changes in air pressure measured by tiny hairs on their body along with, (and perhaps more than), sight to detect incoming swats.   

       //One of these days you'll say something that's true.//   

       One of these days you'll extend me some credit for telling it like it is.
Until then, is attacking and then silent-treatment the new modus operandi?
  

       Perhaps so, but they can certainly see forward. I think it has something to do with those huge hemispherical eyes on each side of their head.   

       //extend me some credit for telling it like it is.// You may rejoice to hear that I shall indeed do so, should the occasion ever arise.   

       //attacking and then silent-treatment// Damn. Have I missed a thread somewhere? I'm no good at silence. And I'm not so much "attacking" as "ridiculing". There are not many people I've met who are both articulate and whacko, so I'm making the most of it.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2017
  

       "The Fly Whisperer". All about attitude.   

       Also helps if they're country flies which - with the right confidence and approach - can simply be picked up... then tossed or flicked in the general direction of the person waving their arms about and complaining about "all these damnable insects".   

       City flies in their prime, not so much - paranoid little bastids, them's.
FlyingToaster, Jun 22 2017
  

       //LED// If the official rule is that the article is the same as for the fully hydrated version, ie : " a LED " , then implicit pluralization's pretty easy to swallow, despite sounding occasionally like an "English as a 14th language" speaker.
FlyingToaster, Jun 22 2017
  

       //they can certainly see forward. I think it has something to do with those huge hemispherical eyes on each side of their head.//   

       Maybe their sight is movement based. If you don't move really slowly you can't poke them in the face.   

       //extend me some credit for telling it like it is.// You may rejoice to hear that I shall indeed do so, should the occasion ever arise.//   

       Oh it's arising alright.   

       //There are not many people I've met who are both articulate and whacko, so I'm making the most of it.//   

       Well good.
I am both of those things and accept those labels gladly.
  

       If you've got flies in the lab you really should try poking them in the face.   

       <note to self, stop giving away thesis paper subjects>   

       You cant just poke them in the face. You have to have a grant first.
Ian Tindale, Jun 22 2017
  

       // implicit pluralization //   

       LED singular, LEDs plural. Likewise, car/cars, spoon/spoons, vote/votes.   

       No apostrophe needed. Now, there are irregular plurals such as man/men, sheep/sheep etc. but most nouns are pluralised by the simple appendation of an "s".   

       Now, in the specific example, "the LEDs' wavelengths" is a contraction of "the wavelengths of the LEDs".   

       The case for the prosecution rests.
8th of 7, Jun 22 2017
  

       In the written word...
"an LED" - wrong
"a LED" - right, based on deacronymization, ie: it's supposed as being read as "light emitting diode".
  

       so, since "light emitting diode" and "light emitting diodes" both acronymize to "LED", the same should apply.
FlyingToaster, Jun 22 2017
  

       "an LED" is easier to say, personally, If writing wants to be literal.
wjt, Jun 22 2017
  

       I would of thought that L. E. D. were the correct way to scrieve it.
pocmloc, Jun 22 2017
  

       Laziness left out the dots (to go world wild) decades ago.
wjt, Jun 22 2017
  

       The periods in abbreviations and acronyms are somewhat redundant with the capitalization, no?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 23 2017
  

       Would have, or even would've, would of been the write way to right it....
Ling, Jun 23 2017
  
      
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