Instructables
Picture of The Bytelight
Make a high-tech mood light from a flourescent lamp and a bunch of old memory chips.
Thanks go to Ross Orr for the original article in
MAKE MAGAZINE Volume 09


 
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Step 1: What You Need...

Picture of What You Need...
1. Some old memory chips. However many you use will determine the size of the Bytelight you build. I used 3 rows of 21, 256K 30 pin SIMMS that I bought as a bulk lot on Ebay.

2. A piece of plexiglass or Lexan. Mine was 12" X 12"

3. Plywood or other wood about 1/2" thick

4. Sheet metal. I used some galvanized sheet metal. Anything reflective will work. You could probably get away with using aluminum foil.

5. Glue. You can use any glue that will work with wood, metal and plastic.

6. Light fixture, lamp cord and flourescent bulb. Any home improvement store will have these or just salvage them from an old garage sale lamp.

7. Assorted screws.

Step 2: Build the cover

Start laying out the ram on the plexiglass. You want to leave about 3/4" around the edge of the plexiglass because it makes for a better looking final product but the choice is yours.
Then start gluing the ram down on the plexiglass, chip side down. Keep everything nice and straight. Your patience here will determine how the Bytelight ends up looking.

Step 3: Build the Light Box

Picture of Build the Light Box
The light box will consist of 4 sides for the frame and a back cover that will hold the light fixture. Carefully measure out the dimensions of your plexiglass and cut the 4 side pieces to fit just to the edge of your glued on RAM. I made the box frame 4" deep to make sure there was plenty of room for the flourescent light bulb. I used corner brackets to hold the frame together and then painted it flat black. The back cover should be measured out and cut after you have assembled the box frame.
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TheGreatS3 years ago
I love the name!
geekdude4 years ago
it seems to me that you would get more light out of the thing if you desoldered the chips. than again that would take a long time, mabye if you used a blowtorch? i wonder if old motherboards are semi transparent.
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Go into the iTunes store. In the little search bar, type in Make, scroll down to the podcast section, click on Make, and in the next screen, there should be a button kind of towards the middle that says subscribe, and click on it. ITunes will start downloading it, and then you just have to wait for it to finish. It will automatically download new ones.
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lol
16 minutes
(removed by author or community request)
No problem.
dark sponge5 years ago
Sometime in the future, when people have computers with petabytes of memory, they might do this with old terrabyte memory chips. Strange thing to think about...
yes, something, flammable, mold-able, drillable, or just all around cool-able
Flammable? Why would anyone want a computer with flammable RAM?

Your computer would have a real firewall! XD
lol, a firewall XD
exactly :) built in
and it would be hardware now what does this button do after pushing button "Do you smell smoke coming from the computer" "Well do you see the fact you computer is on fire" "Go grab the fire extinguish you let me talk you out of buying" "Call 911"
do not press.jpg
our terebytes will be their bytes.
All your terabytes are belong to us. :) (Apologies to all bases...)
People already have computers with petabytes of RAM...
Who? Not anyone I know...
also, think how will the Terabyte chips made, or from what? please make them of something that is hackeable
russ_hensel5 years ago
You have neglected to say how fast the memory has to be. Is faster brighter, or the other way around?
is has to have at least 2 MB of fastness per chip, unless you are using more that 73 chips, than they have to be at least 3 MB of fastness
Does it remember when you last turned the lights on, or do you need more memory for that ;-)

PCBPolice Electronics Forum
Actually it is RAM (Random Access Memory) so it forgets everytime. ;-)
depend whether your chips have the millenium bug, if more than 49% have the milennium bug I only remembers when the last time was you turned it off
Is it sad that it took me until your post about millennium bugs to be sure you were joking? :p
only if you don't have the millennium bug :P
If you put an LED that you could minipulate the color of it would be more of a "mood light" don't u think?
DIY Dave5 years ago
Cool
geeklord5 years ago
Funny, i was looking at the Arduino All-in-One Getting Started Guide and in the little thing that pops up in the YouTube player that shows you all the related videos, this came up! I might make a miniature version of this with some LED's and a few chips.
comodore5 years ago
Great job! As always... :D What is your favorite auction house?
The question was for Kip Kay, but..never mind... :D
It wold be cool to make a whole computer into a wall mounted light, and have it still work.
Nice idea but the internal planes within the PCB would block the light through it :-(

PCBPolice Electronics Forum
harari5 years ago
i tried doing this with some SDRAMs but they have so much copper in more than one layer that there's no light going through. :( looks like a cool project anyway... well done !
IMG_4026.JPG
I think I'm gonna do this, but I'm going to take this spinning mirror thing I got out of a scanner/printer and use a green laser for the light and use the magnifying plexi from a rear screen projection tv instead of just plain plexi. I think it might help my baby brother get to sleep faster, if he stared at it.
chrisayad5 years ago
i hope you dont get cancer
paulpcc5 years ago
thats pretty good :) i keep holding on to old chips and cpus and drives after seeing someone hook up 100+ usb devices and motherboards and other bits of pc equipment to make a network of 1 actual computer with an operating system of some kind using all parts... but i lost the link so i might just go ahead and make a bytelight :)
cflowers5 years ago
Another great hack, Kipkay! I had to feature this one on The Daily Hack. Keep on hacking, modding, and building brother! :-)

Charlie Flowers
DailyHack.net
twitter.com/ctrflowers
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