After obtaining my first Arduino prototyping board I had to put it to some good use. By brainstorming, reading and drawing inspiration from various sources I came up with the idea of creating a weather desk lamp. Basically the idea is that it reads weather data from RSS feeds like temperature, wind speed and precipitation and changes accordingly the color and intensity of the light. Also there are modes where you can manually set the RGB values or let it randomly swirl through colors.
For the task of obtaining and analyzing the weather forecast I created a small Processing program, it strips certain values from the RSS feed, maps them to RGB values and passes them over to the Arduino board.
At first I tested the whole thing with three clear LEDs but the colors did’t mix up quite well. So I ordered some Super-flux Piranha RGB LEDs. Really bright little bugger! The only problem was that they are Common-Anode type, with Arduino it meant they had to be implemented in a sort of active-low way. I used PWM to set the color intensity so I had to invert the output values in order for it to work properly again.
Finally after a lot of messing around I reached the desired effect and a nice smooth color swirl. So the next step was to make the whole thing a little bit more presentable, so here comes in IKEA. I went there for a walk looking for something that would “ring a bell”, after all I ended up getting a FODO Table lamp to stick the whole thing inside!
Source : weather_lamp.zip