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LED cover for Macintosh laptops
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(+3, -5)
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When I go to sleep at night, I set my laptop to "sleep" and leave it plugged in. The screen goes black immediately, and it reboots quickly the next morning.

Yet, two lights remain. They're bright and cheerful at daytime; one is a green ring around the power plug, one is white and slowly growing brighter, then dimmer, then brighter again, like breathing of the sleeping laptop. Yes, very anthropomorphic. But, man, at night, those lights are bright enough to cast a shadow on my wall.

(A) I propose the production of a thin piece of sheet metal, L-shaped with strange bends at the ends to clamp around the laptop's sides covering those glowing connectors, perhaps with a short piece of cloth for a tighter seal; with some means of carrying it on the popped-up screen during work. It would confuse anyone not aware of its purpose, and extinguish the blinkenlights for those of us who like their darkness dark.

(B) Alternatively, a combination of 1. a thick rubber ring that is rolled up on the round powerplug and is rolled down to cover that glow; and 2. a clamp that covers the front white light that indicates sleep mode.

jutta, Jan 20 2005

Blue Sleeping LED on Pbook G3 http://macmod.com/content/view/125/2/
If you're not fond of warranties, just substitute "LED" with "resistor" or "nothing" [tiromancer, Jan 24 2005]


       A computer cosy, like a teapot cosy.
skinflaps, Jan 20 2005

       A laptop duvet would hide those lights.
hippo, Jan 20 2005

       I'm a bit worried about covering up the LEDs in a way that won't uncover them when I start using the laptop again. As the power/charge indicator is pretty subliminal in daylight hours, I'd forget to uncover it when I started usign the laptop again.   

       A (possibly too hi-tech) solution that occurs to me would be a photodiode (light shielded from the LED) that dims the lights depending on ambient lighting. It would probably be quite expensive as a one-off, but if the LED/photodiode circuit ever made it into manufacture as a single component the prices would come down.
st3f, Jan 20 2005

       I don't find the power ring light all that obtrusive, but the white front light certainly is. I resorted to placing my phone on top of the closed iBook, sandwiching a folded piece of paper that flopped over the edge, masking it.
Ian Tindale, Jan 20 2005

       //photodiode (light shielded from the LED) that dims the lights depending on ambient lighting.//   

       Some Mac laptops already have a light sensor, that turns on the lighted keyboard when the room is dark. Maybe that could also be used to dim the heartlight when the room is dark.
robinism, Jan 20 2005

       I put electrical tape over all the LEDs I could reach. Masking tape dims them pretty well if you want to be able to check the light. I found the setup very satisfying until my girlfriend peeled the tape off all her stuff.
tiromancer, Jan 22 2005

       The fan occasionally coming on bugs me when I'm sleeping. Also, if I forget to turn the volume down and a schedule alarm goes off on the laptop or I get a weather alert chirping sound. Don't want to have to get up to turn it down. And if I turn it down, have to remember to turn it up the next day. It's weird how loud stuff gets when half asleep.
Mustardface, Jan 22 2005

       Especially the voices.
Detly, Jan 22 2005

       Like tiromancer, I used electrical tape over all the LEDs on my Dell, but I used orange tape (it was handy). It dims the lights sufficiently so they don't bother me in a dark room (while I'm aspeep or awake), but they are still plainly visible to check their status.
swamilad, Jan 23 2005

       I take it none of you turn your computers off at night.
FarmerJohn, Jan 23 2005

       Still, the battery charging indicator is on.
swamilad, Jan 23 2005

       [FJ], the beauty of "sleep" or "standby" is that the power consumption is greatly reduced yet the machine is kept in a ready state. This is especially attractive for laptops because they tend to be the slowest at booting up from cold. Maybe because the disk drives are kind of anemic?
bristolz, Jan 23 2005

       I've just turned off the light for the night, and realized that (just like every night) I turned down the backlight on my notebook. It has eight settings.   

       I just decided that another solution would be for the LEDs to have as many brightness settings as the backlight, perhaps 0-7 where 0 is off and 7 is brightest. These could be linked to the backlight setting so the LEDs dim when I turn down the screen brightness.   

       I realize this doesn't precisely solve the stated problem because not everyone will want to turn down the screen every night. Would help me though.
swamilad, Jan 24 2005

       As cute as our Mac is, when it goes to sleep it does so on a comfy down pillow. Snuggled into the pillow, none of the lights are visible. It also mutes fans, snores, snorts and other computer related sounds.   

       Do not try letting your Dell sleep on a pillow. It is liable to catch fire.
bungston, Jan 24 2005

       Incidentally, I'm not one to leave my iBook on charge all night. I'm very dependent upon batteries, and I seem to get good life out of them, and only charge where necessary. I know some people with poor battery performance and a coincidental habit of leaving the unit on charge forever.
Ian Tindale, Jan 24 2005

       [bungston], It's amazing to me that you can leave your laptop on a pillow and not have it catch fire (but I'm used to a Dell). I think Dell is changing their slogan from "Easy as Dell" to "That's hot!"
robinism, Jan 24 2005

       I recently took part in a group practical project at uni, involving some actual web development stuff. To demonstrate it, two of us took our laptops in and cabled them together. My colleague brought in his Dell. It was enormous, hot and loud. And despite being new, had a very short battery life. We turned my closed iBook sideways next to it and it was apparent that you could almost stack four of them - two wide and two deep - to equate to the volume of the Dell unit. I reckon a lot of 'laptops' these days are simply transportable versions of a desktop. Not enough is promoted regarding the benefits of not using a screamingly fast power-sucking room-heating processor in a portable appliance, I reckon. What would the mobile phone market be like if people had the same attitude: "sure, I only get half an hour standby on it, but it's got a 4GHz processor!"
Ian Tindale, Jan 24 2005

       I cover my LED's with a piece of black paper (usually ripped out of a magazine). But that isn't enough because I also have to cover up my cable box's LED and clock, my TV's "plugged-in" LED, plus the lights on any number of other charging appliances each making its own contribution to my Christmas tree-like arrangement of electrical merriment.
phundug, Jan 24 2005

       Also try gaffer's tape, cloth tape much used in theater and film. It's opaque but removes without residue.
Etymon, Jan 24 2005

       I don't like it when a whole idea is just a demonstration of the author's ability to assign meanings to unlikely titles. The joke works like this: you read the title, you think "this can't possibly mean anything", and then, wow, the author manages to come up with a quaint little story that assigns meaning to the words. But the idea is not something that would work or sell, and it's not clear how it's relevant to the author's life. There's not much you can do but admire the author's verbal prowess and move on.   

       I don't mind puns if taken lightly. Especially if they're new. In case of this idea, the title isn't all that good (it points in the wrong direction), but, as should be obvious from the idea's body, it came last. (And I thought the Mac was bad, but a recent acquisition, an Iomega external disk drive, is much worse. I guess I can use it as a flash light if the power fails while backing up.)
jutta, Sep 15 2009

       My HP was covered by a pillow, and burnt!   

       Sorry Jutta for all the stupid "Better Mouse" ideas. For each one I try to give at least two better real stupid ideas.
pashute, Mar 27 2011


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