Circadian lighting

Jet lag has broken my brain. I spent the night in a special extended edition of one of those paralysed 3am panics about things left undone, slept through the alarm, and only woke up eight hours later, at 4.30pm. Please don’t talk to me. Sounds hurt.

I was planning a nice long post about robots today, but the screen is strobing at me and my eyes are watering. So instead, I’m going to embed a video and give you a link to this really excellent project from Rasathus, which has a special significance for anybody feeling the way I do today. Rasathus has made a Raspberry Pi version of NASA’s circadian lighting setup, used in the International Space Station. Astronauts on the ISS do not have access to the sleep-promoting tools that we here on earth do (hot baths, warm cats, fluffy pyjamas, too much email), so NASA and Boeing spent $11.2m on making the lights on the ISS cycle through red and blue. Rasathus has done much the same thing with a $35 Pi and some $40 LEDs. Suggestions for what NASA might have done with the savings in the comments, please.

In short, this project will allow you to fake up sunrises and sunsets, bright noontime light and all that good stuff. I plan to build one myself to avoid a repeat of today’s total failure of body clock for the next time I have to travel. You’ll need some bits and pieces you can get from Adafruit (there’s a hardware list on Rasathus’s website), and the code is all available on Github.

I’m going to have a nice soothing bath in my pyjamas with Mooncake. Thank you, Rasathus, for the clever.