Having a backlight to your monitor reduces eyestrain. I used to use my flexible desklamp aimed at the wall behind my monitor, but that meant I couldn't use it on my workspace. While at our local big box hardware store the other day I saw these cool lightbulbs and thought it would be fun to use one as the backlight. A few bucks and a short time later I was set up.

It's bright (clear 40W bulb) and you wouldn't want to look directly at it, but I like the retro look to it. Of course, you can use any lightbulb in it and be greener using a CFL.

Step 1: Parts and Tools

The parts list is pretty short, and under $10 new. You can likely scrounge all of the parts.
    1. Porcelain Lampholder - these are made to attach to a ceiling box, so you can't stand it directly on your desk.
    2. Electrical cord - I bought a 6' extension cord and cut off the outlet end.
    3. Inline rotary switch - this gets added to the extension cord.
    4. Lightbulb - your choice.
    5. 4" square of 3/4" wood (I used MDF, but anything will work).
    6. Paint (for the wood base).
    7. Feet for the base (I used vinyl bumpers that I had extra from another project).
    8. A couple screws to attach the lampholder to the base.

    1. Screwdriver.
    2. Wirecutters.
    3. Drill with 1/4" bit (or a size that the cord can fit through).
    4. Router (or get creative with the drill).

This is so elegant and simple. Thanks for the instructable.<br>I have seen lamp cords with rotary switches built in and bare wires at the end, if this helps anyone thinking about doing a similar project. I know I have been inspired!
I have an even better solution to this problem, and its free too! I heard about this while on a forum and ever since I have been using it it awesome and it really works. http://stereopsis.com/flux/ (i do not work for them but this i have to give them credit for)
Thanks for the link. That app changes the color balance of your screen depending on time of day. My monitor is calibrated for photography, so that would mess it up. Also, lighting behind your monitor (not the color of the screen) is what reduces eye strain.
For everyones safety: Are you sure the Inline rotary switch is meant for 110/220V? <br>I&acute;ve only seen them for 12V-lamps? Otherwise a cool project! A LED-lamp is a good alternative and new types are cool retro-looking too.
I double checked, and the one I used is made for 120v. http://www.leviton.com/OA_HTML/ibeCCtpItmDspRte.jsp?item=2757&amp;section=13903&amp;minisite=10021<br>

About This Instructable




Bio: Educator, entrepreneur, photogeek.
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