2001-10-30 – Bright sparks use hands-free

Here’s a good one. I shall now demonstrate how to use really high-tech to solve a relatively simple problem. Someone is bound to want to pay for it!
Imagine, if you will, a farmer or worker outdoors. As these cold nights draw in, it gets harder and harder to see with the shorter days and longer twilights and nights. A common solution is to put up a floodlight on a building, but, since the brightness of a source decreases so rapidly with increasing distance, lots of light gets wasted, and it is still hard to see. Using a spotlight is hard, if you need to move at all, unless you have someone to hold the torch for you.
So, we take a reflective strip, and wear it on our arms, or whatever… (a hat might be good) Next we take our spotlight, and mount it on our tracking unit. A simple detector now tracks the bright spot wherever it moves, ensuring that the light goes where it is needed! You could affix the reflectors to your boots, and avoid being dazzled, yet still have your hands free, and see where you are walking. Use of a computer would allow offsets and other clever things to be done, including multiple tracking, and multiple spots.
Of course, for the money, you could just buy a pair of night-vision goggles… or, for less, a miner’s helmet lamp!

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