This project's funding goal was not reached on December 21, 2012.
About this project
Fifty-two LEDs in two million colors add up to infinite possibilities of pattern and animation. With a powerful computer and WiFi connectivity, there’s no end to the ways the Light by Moore’sCloud can work for you. It’s the light you’ll live your life by.
Beneath its stylish exterior beats a smart heart - an embedded Linux computer. Light by Moore’sCloud is more than just a lamp - it’s a lamp with a LAMP stack! With the full Internet connectivity and power of Linux behind it, all sorts of amazing applications become possible.
The Light by Moore’sCloud can respond to commands from a local smartphone, a tablet - and anything else with an HTML5-compliant browser, or respond to a computer on the other side of the world. The temperature in Vladivostok can alter the color of a Light in Santa Fe.
Capture the color of a dress, a flower, or the sky with a smartphone camera, and the Light will immediately adjust itself to generate that color. Mood lighting has never been so easy, or so versatile.
Programs on other computers can also control the Light, via standard web protocols, through its REST-based interface. This opens the door to ‘Illumination-as-a-service’. This makes the Light a fantastic status indicator: are my servers still running? Has my build failed? Look into the Light and you’ll have an answer.
Go further - stream a continuously changing set of colors to the Light. Synchronize with a broadcast to add dramatic lighting to a scary movie, or build it into a children’s e-book, so that as they follow the text, the lighting adapts, to accentuate the story. DJs can broadcast ‘party lighting’ to go along with their dance sets.
The Light by Moore’sCloud can talk to other devices - other Lights, or pretty much anything else on the Internet. We are seeking integration with LIFX, SmartThings, Ubi and Ninja Blocks and should be able to integrate with most open automation software. This means Lights can act in concert, coordinating their activities. For example, if you wake up in the middle of the night and tap on your bedside Light, it can tell the other Lights in your house to light up, creating a ‘landing strip’ that will help you find your way around.
The Light by Moore’sCloud has the power to display beautiful, evocative animations - candles and flames, fireworks and rainbows - each sweep their way through the Light in a play of color that will delight and mesmerize.
We want everyone to sculpt with light, and to enable that, we’ve created a software platform - WuVoxels - that allows anyone with modest programming experience (today in ‘C’, soon, Python) to create their own procedural animations. Everyone, regardless of experience, will be able to use Moore’sCloud Studio, browser-based animation software that will ship with the Light.
We’ve built an accelerometer into the Light by Moore’sCloud, so it knows when it’s touched. You don’t need to fumble for the switch in the middle of the night, just a tap will activate the Light. Spin the Light in your hands and watch the colors change, and use the sensor to create your own games and applications.
The Light by Moore’sCloud has a range of apps and animations that you can access through a smartphone-like interface. Search for more apps, install, configure, and manage them all from a browser.
Set a timer, and the Light will fade to black at the end of a long day; set an alarm and it can wake you with gentle light. Dial into ‘mood channels’ that lighten your spirit with a play of light. Stream from your favorite music app (with an appropriate plug-in) and create your own light show.
Outside the home, a boutique can tune its lighting to match the time of day, the fashions, or the decor. A nightclub or cafe can establish or change ambiance instantly.
The commercial applications for the Light by Moore’sCloud are just as numerous: as a ‘dashboard’ to warn of emerging problems; as a signal to indicate failure of a build, a server, or a connection, etc...
In November, we integrated the Light by Moore'sCloud with Atlassian Bamboo, a continuous integration & deployment package used by software development teams around the world. A distributed development team can now be informed of the status of the build - with a glance at the Light:
We've added a new feature to the Light by Moore'sCloud - battery power! Just pull the plug and get up to four hours of brilliant illumination - perfect for games, events, anywhere you want beautiful, intelligent light.
We keep inventing interesting applications for the Light by Moore’sCloud, and there’s no way we’ll be able to create all of them ourselves. We see the Light as a platform that enables people to make amazing applications. Our job is to develop the platform, so that you can have fun with it.
Moore’sCloud Light contains an embedded computer running Arch Linux, so all of the great tools and services you expect to make development easy - Apache, Python, ssh, the GNU toolchain, and everything else - are available.
We believe in openness. All of our work - both hardware and software - everything from PCB layout to case design to the electrical schematic to animation framework, system software and firmware - is already being released under open source licenses. (Creative Commons for the hardware, MIT License for the software.) We want the community to take our work and build upon it - without limits.
If you'd like to build your own Light, we've already published everything you need to know to DIY. Just visit our dev blog, grab a soldering iron, and get started!
Our commitment to openness extends beyond hardware and software. We are documenting our process - at blog.moorescloud.com - from conception, through execution, and into what we hope will be success - so that others who want to launch their own Kickstarters can look at what we’ve done, how and why we’ve done it, and learn from both our successes and mistakes. We promise to keep you well-informed during the entire process, from Kickstarter to delivery.
We've taken all of the financial models used to develop our funding needs - which drive the revenue projections for our Kickstarter campaign - and have made them available for your review, beginning with an article on our blog, exploring our budget in detail. We invite you to read By The Numbers to learn about how your money will be spent. You have a right to know.
We have prepared three versions of the financial projections, available in Open Office, Microsoft Excel, and PDF formats. The Open Office and MS Excel spreadsheets are more fun, because they allow you to ‘run the numbers’. Download them and have a play!
There's still a lot of software that needs to be written to make the Light by Moore’sCloud both functional and a pleasure to use. We're developing the kinds of UX and UI needed to talk to a whole household or workspace of connected devices. (Our preliminary design is pictured below.) It's a big task, one we know will only be partially complete by the time we ship our first Lights. We'll ship useful software, but it won't be as beautiful as we really want - that takes time, testing and lots of feedback.
We invite you to join us on our development blog - dev.moorescloud.com - where you can participate in the development and design of all aspects of the Light. Even if you're not particularly technical, your ideas and imagination will help us along. With your input, we can make a better Light.
Making a beautiful, useable and durable piece of consumer electronics contains plenty of traps for the unwary. Several members of the Moore’sCloud team have experience in consumer electronics design and manufacture, and we have partnered with internationally renowned industrial and manufacturing designers Tiller Design to develop a product that is both eye-catching and manufacturable. We are ready to initiate the manufacturing engineering process - taking our prototype and turning it into a mass-manufacturable design - as soon as we reach our Kickstarter goal. With Tiller Design’s strong commitment to ISO 31000 risk assessment & ISO 9001 quality control, we have the processes in place to ensure that we deliver the Light by Moore’sCloud on schedule.
- Dimensions: 150mm x 150mm x 135mm
(roughly 6” on a side)
- Power: 5VDC, 3A (power supply included)
- Battery power: 4xAA NiMH (batteries not included)
- Illumination: 52 full-color LEDs (7 bits each of R, G, and B):
9 LEDs on each outer face in 3x3 array
4 LEDs on each inner face in 2x2 array
- Processor: Freescale iMX233 @ 454 Mhz
- Memory: 64MB DDR SDRAM
- Storage: 2GB microSD
- Accelerometer: Freescale MMA7660
- WiFi: Nano USB 802.11 b/g/n (replaceable)
- Access to I2C and serial connections for hardware extensibility
- Operating System: Arch Linux 2.6.x (hopefully 3.7 by release)
GNU toolchain, Apache, sshd, Python 2.7.x
Other Arch packages can be installed by you.
- WuVoxels animation libraries (both 'C' and Python);
- 'Sing', a Processing-like framework for animations;
- Moore’sCloud Control, a web framework for connected devices, providing rich interactivity from the browser;
- Moore’sCloud Studio, an easy-to-use browser-based tool for creating rich and beautiful animations;
- Lots of examples in 'C', Python, and HTML5.
You can get more information about the technology behind the Light by Moore'sCloud on our development blog - dev.moorescloud.com
Risks and challenges
Getting the product ready, designed and shipped. Rated LOW. Mitigated by the excellent team assembled who have decades of experience in taking ideas to market.
Electronic Component supply due to changing supply lead-times beyond control of the project team. Rated LOW. Mitigation: we will identify at the start of the project key long lead-time components and place all long lead-time items on order to prevent impact to the project plan. This is also managed through connection with manufacture at point of design.
Getting the right light dispersion from the plastic moldings. Rated LOW. Mitigation: use the prototype and tool trial phase to test a range of materials, We will build testing time into the project plan to do this.
Meeting shipping and logistics demands. Rated LOW. Mitigated by the project plan which will run a separate task to setup and organise shipping and logistics in parallel to the design and implementation.
Certification delays from global agencies beyond control of the project team. Rated LOW. Mitigation: the project plan will run a separate product certification task to ensure this is done as part of the project in parallel to design and production.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
(Copied from Update 6)
1) Are there now two models of Light?
Yes. There is the standard version, which is mains-powered and must always be plugged in, and there is the brand-new battery-powered version.
2) What’s the difference?
Both units will run fine on mains power, and both come with power supplies. The battery-powered version has additional circuitry to handle the charging of 4 AA batteries, and which also provides power via those batteries when the mains power is unplugged. This means you can unplug the battery-powered version, and it will operate normally for a few hours (how long depends on how much illumination the Light provides).
3) I backed you for $99 for a regular Light. Do I still get a regular Light?
Yes. If you’ve backed us for a regular Light, that’s what you’ll receive.
4) I backed you for a regular Light but now I want a battery-powered Light! What do I do?
If you have already backed us for $99, all you need to do is to add $30 to your contribution. You can do this by going to our Kickstarter page, and clicking on the big blue button that says “Manage Your Pledge”, then add $30 to the pledge amount. That’s all you need to do.
5) Do I need to change the reward I’m asking for?
If you want to make things perfectly clear, you can change your reward from LIGHT to LIGHT POWER. But we’ll should be able to figure it out, even if you don’t do this. If you’ve pledged $129, we will know that you want a battery-powered Light.
6) I don’t want a battery-powered Light. Do I need to do anything?
No. We’ll know from your contribution level that you want a mains-powered Light.
7) I want a mix of battery-powered and mains-powered Lights. What do I do?
Make a pledge, then send us a message indicating how your pledge to be allocated. We’ll do the rest.
8) The battery-powered Light is really cool, but why are you making us pay extra for it? Why aren’t you just rolling that into the existing reward?
The circuitry for battery power is subtle and surprisingly expensive. In order to provide stable, reliable power both from mains and from the battery - and to charge the battery from mains power - requires a fair bit of circuitry with a few expensive components. The cost of these components (plus development costs) is reflected in the higher cost of the battery-powered unit.
9) Will the battery-powered Light ship at the same time as the mains-powered Light?
Yes, we expect that will be the case.
10) Will it be possible to upgrade a mains-powered Light into a battery-powered Light after the Kickstarter campaign?
We believe so, but we aren’t yet 100% sure of the upgrade path, so you’re taking a small risk that a mains-powered Light will not be upgradeable. We don’t want that to happen, but in the interests of openness and honesty, we need to acknowledge this might be the case.
Yes, the Light by Moore’sCloud will ship with a 15 Watt switching power supply which will work in the US and Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Technically, the power supply will work with a range from 110 V to 230 V, and either 50Hz or 60Hz alternating current.
We love LIFX. The idea of a socket-compatible, WiFi accessible LED light is genius. We are already studying the both the Hue and LIFX technical documentation so that we will be able to control both bulbs out of the box. When you use your Light to match the color of a flower, or a sky -- or whatever -- the Light can tell all the LIFX and Hue bulbs in that room to match the color. The Light by MooresCloud makes both LIFX and Hue more useful, while LIFX and Hue both make the Light more powerful. It's an ecology of intelligent lighting - and we hope you support them all!
Taking a prototype through a manufacturing design cycle - so that it can be mass-produced - is expensive. In our case it's going to cost roughly a quarter million dollars. We could ask for that on Kickstarter - but then we'd have no money left over for rewards! Our funding model allows us to pay for the manufacturing design and the manufacture of Lights for our backers.
Almost all of our software will be web-based, running on the Light, serving HTML5 pages to any compatible device - iPhone and Android, Windows and Linux - so long as it has an HTML5-ready browser. In specific instances native apps will be the best way to go, and in those cases, yes, we will release both iOS and Android versions - and, of course, the source code for both so you can take them and modify them for your own apps!
The Light has a button all around the edge of its central opening. That button will turn the Light on and off. In addition, the Light has an accelerometer, so it can detect when it is tapped. Taps will also turn the Light on and off.
Check out our Technical FAQ page at http://dev.moorescloud.com/hardware/answering-some-technical-faqs/
- (59 days)