Saturday, March 28, 2015

Color for the colorblind

EnChroma in association with Valspar has developed glasses which transform colors for people with color vision deficiency.

Learn more about the technology used at

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Laptop screen repaired

My ancient Dell Inspiron developed problems with the screen about 18 months ago.  The LCD panel was OK, but the backlight was not working. In the meantime, I have used an external monitor with it.

Inspired by a recent episode of the Ben Heck Show where Ben replaced the inefficient CFL tube with LEDs, I had another look at repairing the screen. Opening it up, I discovered that one of the tube's connections was broken and so after soldering it back together, the screen is working again.
The CFL tube removed from the screen

The end of the tube where the bad connection had shorted out

Starting to put it back together
You can see the various layers of magnifiers and diffusers for the backlight 

It works again!

Only glitch is some dust in between the diffuser and magnifier layers

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Happy pi day (3.14.15)

To celebrate pi day, I've created a couple of art works:

3 dominates π

Later today I will also make a lemon meringue pie.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Bit of a makeover

I've given the MuzGadgets blog a bit of a makeover with a vector based banner designed in Affinity Designer from Serif and freshening up the look of the blog with new fonts and some color tweaking.

I have also removed some stuff, but all the blog posts since the blog started in 2007 are still here. 

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Which gadget takes priority?

My work phone is a Galaxy Note 3 that came with a 1st gen galaxy gear watch. Because i am a gadget guy i like to get the most out of all my gadgets, the note 3 has nfc technology built in so i started playing with anything i could scan.
My credit card has a nfc chip inside as does my passport. I use an app called tasker to automate various parts of my life. I pulled the nfc page out of an old passport and placed it on my work desk. When I arrived at work each day I can simply lay my phone on the passport page and it would initiate certain tasks like backing up my photos from my phone. Because it works so well i ordered a bunch of nfc stickers from AliExpress. Once the second lot arrived, which were the right format, I was away putting stickers around the house to run different tasks on my phone.
NFC sticker on Marmite jar
This all went well until i discovered wireless charging. The kit I got from aliexpress included a charging pad and a receiver coil that fits inside the back cover of the phone. Wow this is awesome no more plugging the cable in just lay my phone on the pad and it would charge itself. Very convenient.

However now my nfc does not work it seems that the charging receiver coil seems to block the nfc radio signals.
So now i have to decide which is more convenient the wireless charging or the automation of tasks with nfc.

I know this is a first world problem and maybe i should be thinking about helping children in Africa . But if there's anyone out there who knows how to get both working drop me a line until then I think i'll go back to plugging in my charger.