FW3A, a TLF/BLF EDC flashlight

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Lazy-R-us
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ToyKeeper wrote:
Originally I was thinking a ramping mode with a raised floor and lowered ceiling, maybe capable of doing like 10 lm to 500 lm. Bright enough to make it obviously “on” even at the bottom end, yet never high enough to overheat. But if people want it even simpler, reducing it to just on/off at a medium level is okay too. This depends entirely on what people think is best.

My opinion is that Muggle mode should be as much as possible “training wheels” for using the flashlight in its normal mode. The inverse of the “ludicrous mode” in Teslas. Teaching new users how the interface works with ramping, while keeping them from causing damage.

ToyKeeper wrote:

I’m also wondering what people think about how to exit muggle mode. There seem to be three main options:
  • Cut: Disconnect power (and probably click once to drain any remaining power from the driver).
  • Cut-and-hold: Disconnect power, then hold the button while reconnecting power.
  • Password: Some sort of click sequence which people aren’t likely to do by accident.

So far it uses the “cut” method. Loosen the tailcap, then either wait for the capacitors to drain (can take a few minutes) or click the button to drain them immediately, then tighten the tailcap again. Or loosen the tailcap while the LEDs are on, which drains power immediately.

If either of the latter two methods are used, it’ll need to remember muggle mode in eeprom, and we are basically guaranteed to get complaints that people can’t figure out how to get back to normal operation. So the question is basically how hard it should be to escape. Some high-powered lasers require entering a password in Morse code before it’ll turn on, but I think that would be excessive for this project.


I think Cut is sufficient, especially given that your testing shows that you actually have to drain the driver for it to take effect. It’s not like a drop is going to reset it.

It sounds like you can even swap a battery and the driver will retain enough power to stay in Muggle mode, as long as you don’t click the switch.

Lazy-R-us

miswas
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Hi TK,

 

I like the concept of a "dumb" light, where it's either on or off.  Not for Muggles per se, just as a clean option to run the light at a fixed output at the click of a button, without the inherent risk of ramping up to max, etc.  The output in the case would be settable, then locked.

 

If the purpose of such an arrangement is indeed for Muggles, then a fixed output (decent runtime while still bright enough to be useful), unmodifiable, is what I like.  And of course with the "dumb" switch arrangement.

 

And having both options in the UI would be great! Smile

 

Also, I'm with Lazy-r-us on using the Cut method, just my preference.

 

Yes, lots of generalities here, but I defer to all those BLFers with (much, much!) more knowledge and experience than I Smile

 

Thanks!

 

 

-Ben

 

-Ben Walker
miswas

ToyKeeper
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Lazy-R-us wrote:
I think Cut is sufficient, especially given that your testing shows that you actually have to drain the driver for it to take effect. It’s not like a drop is going to reset it.

It sounds like you can even swap a battery and the driver will retain enough power to stay in Muggle mode, as long as you don’t click the switch.

On the D4 I’m using for development, at least, yes. I can take off the tailcap, remove the battery, have a conversation, then put it back together… and it doesn’t even notice the power was gone. Standby power is ridiculously low. But I don’t know if the FW3A will behave the same way.

Seeker1
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Add me to the D4 incident list. Forgot to lock it out (Maybe a few too many beers).

Now I have a cheap pair of polyester running shorts with large hole in the bottom of a pocket.

goshdogit
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ToyKeeper wrote:
I’m also wondering what people think about how to exit muggle mode. There seem to be three main options:
  • Cut: Disconnect power (and probably click once to drain any remaining power from the driver).
  • Cut-and-hold: Disconnect power, then hold the button while reconnecting power.
  • Password: Some sort of click sequence which people aren’t likely to do by accident.
I’ll chime in with a “Nay” for a simple ‘cut’ to exit muggle mode.

When I hand a light to a muggle, they immediately open it to look at the cell, then try their best to cross-thread it back together. Facepalm

cut

  • - likely to be performed inadvertently
  • - muggles can’t learn about and use mechanical lockout
  • - muggles can’t change cells

cut-and-hold

  • + unlikely to be perfomed inadvertently
  • + simple for non-muggle to remember

password

  • + great for gifting a light with the potential to be ‘unlocked’ after muggle is certified Big Smile
  • - forgetful non-muggle could be locked out of their own light

I’m using TK’s amazing Andúril on several lights. Muggles (young and old) quickly understand its ramping UI.

I hand them a light and say, “Click for on and off. Hold to change brightness.” Andúril is so intuitive that they figure out reversing on their own.

I’d like muggle mode to have a ramp with a customizable floor and ceiling, with no access to turbo or blinkies.

Single-mode lights are boring, and even muggles deserve ramping! Party

Perhaps a ‘single output mode’ could be a separate feature?

joechina
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The Miller wrote:
If five clicks doesn’t interfere with other things this makes sense (I really like a single mode that gives “max safe brightness”)

Is there a decision which firmware is used?
I guess it will be the programmer with time for it. I have no preference for NarsilM or Andúril.
It would be nice when the two use the same commands.

NarsilM v1.2 beta uses 5 clicks for its tactical mode. Is 6 clicks in Andúril free?

Maybe Tom can move tac. mode to 6 clicks?

EDIT: forget it, just read TKs comments

stephenk
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ToyKeeper][quote=stephenk wrote:

The tactical strobes presently use a 25% or 33% duty cycle, depending on which firmware and mode is used. BLF lights have been that way for years and I haven’t heard any complaints about it. It’s long enough to be very disorienting, but is trimmed back a bit to increase runtime and reduce heat.
25% to 33% is fine for “tactical use”, but no good for light painting (with various tools attached to the light) where 50% is the sweet spot for visual effects. I have a comparison photo in my S2+ review. It is a rapidly increasing market segment.
joechina
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Stephenk
what about an extra firmware for light painting?
Some wishes are verry special and you can tweak it to your need.

ToyKeeper
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stephenk wrote:
ToyKeeper wrote:
The tactical strobes presently use a 25% or 33% duty cycle

25% to 33% is fine for “tactical use”, but no good for light painting

Right. This is unrelated to the FW3A, but I have an entirely different firmware in progress which will probably be a lot more interesting for light painting. It uses a RAGB quad-color setup and lets the user configure a reasonably wide variety of lighting patterns in a manner similar to how analog synthesizers let people sculpt sounds. It’s, um, simpler than an analog synth, but the general concepts are basically the same. If you want to oscillate suddenly between two different states with a 50% duty cycle (like a strobe), simple, tell it what those two states are and configure it to do a square wave between them. You can also overlay another waveform simultaneously, with a different shape/frequency/intensity, if you like. For example, it’s easy to make a police flasher this way — slow square wave between red and blue plus a fast square wave between dim and bright. But plenty of less-jarring combinations are possible too.

The intent is for use in a lightsaber, to paint neat-looking patterns in the air while swinging it around. I’d imagine it should work pretty well for more general light painting too.

ToyKeeper
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goshdogit wrote:
When I hand a light to a muggle, they immediately open it to look at the cell, then try their best to cross-thread it back together. Facepalm

The cut-and-hold thing can be done, though it’ll cost a little extra space. It also uses up a UI action which might be useful for other things. Holding the button while connecting power might be a good way to reset to factory defaults, for example. That’s a thing which isn’t implemented at all right now, and hold-at-boot is probably the easiest way to do it. But I don’t know what would be the best UI choice for hold-at-boot.

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Please add me in for 1.

Thanks,
FB

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Please put me down for 2!

Thank you.

stephenk
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ToyKeeper wrote:
stephenk wrote:
ToyKeeper wrote:
The tactical strobes presently use a 25% or 33% duty cycle

25% to 33% is fine for “tactical use”, but no good for light painting

Right. This is unrelated to the FW3A, but I have an entirely different firmware in progress which will probably be a lot more interesting for light painting. It uses a RAGB quad-color setup and lets the user configure a reasonably wide variety of lighting patterns in a manner similar to how analog synthesizers let people sculpt sounds. It’s, um, simpler than an analog synth, but the general concepts are basically the same. If you want to oscillate suddenly between two different states with a 50% duty cycle (like a strobe), simple, tell it what those two states are and configure it to do a square wave between them. You can also overlay another waveform simultaneously, with a different shape/frequency/intensity, if you like. For example, it’s easy to make a police flasher this way — slow square wave between red and blue plus a fast square wave between dim and bright. But plenty of less-jarring combinations are possible too.

The intent is for use in a lightsaber, to paint neat-looking patterns in the air while swinging it around. I’d imagine it should work pretty well for more general light painting too.

Sounds cool!
pirate joe 22
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im in for 2

The Miller
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Yeah a list update is overdue, will do it soon Wink

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I’m in for 1.

The Miller
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Welcome to BLF, will do tomorrow!

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I want 1 please

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The Miller
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I’ll sign up for a second one as well…

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I love the idea of being able to set ramping to regulated max. Single mode muggle is not bad. And cut to escape is a good, easy option.

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New here, do I just have to say I’m interested to get on the list?

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copper’, you just did what you needed to do to get that done. The Miller will be by in good time to get you on the list.

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