Touch sensors using lights and PVC?

Hmm... What would it be like to replace a physical switch with a touch sensitive switch. Instead of using a beam of light to detect a triggering, we use a illuminated transparent PVC plastic. This allows the interface to be more flushed into the wall. How it will work, is that by touching the transparent plastic, you allow a small amount of light to escape. The circuit will detect this drop in light level and trigger the switch. Pros: it looks cool, and is of lower maintenance than a physical switch. Its also cheaper then other options such as capacitive sensing Cons: it can have false readings due to the use of light as a sensing medium.

ampeyro8 years ago
I have a half-done half-abandoned project for doing "invisible" switches for my home, but I will try it on summer or when finished studying
forgesmith9 years ago
Close enough?

Please describe this 'escaping of light,' haven't really heard of it before.

How would this differ greatly from using a glowing chunk of plastic, like an Indiglo nightlight, coating the outside surface with a clear conducting film, then linking the film to a traditional touch lamp circuit? The Indiglo thing already has a film on one side of the plastic used, making one plate double-sided would be easy enough.

It would be a new application, a merging, of two existing technologies. Might be patentable. Probably would look cool too.
Rishnai9 years ago
I thought that was how muti-touch screens worked, except with some other, non-PVC plastic? I'd still like to see a homebrew version if it can be done.