Saturday, August 2, 2014

Free Xbox Games with Gold workaround

EDIT: Now you can start building your Xbox One games library from your Xbox 360. Just go to "Games with Gold" from the Gold tile on Home.

For a while now Microsoft has been giving away free games to their Xbox live gold members twice a month. When the Xbox One came out they included the same deal. You can get Xbox One games for free as a gold member. Originally I thought that you had to own a Xbox One to use this benefit. But one day I discovered that you can "purchase" these free games through their website (http://www.xbox.com/en-US/live/games-with-gold).


This is awesome because I don't own the Xbox One, yet. So Twice a month I visit xbox.com and claim my free games for the Xbox One. This way when I finally have enough saved up enough to buy it, I'll already have plenty of games to enjoy. I just wish I discovered this sooner, because I haven't found a way to go back and claim the free offers I missed.

Note: This also works for those that don't have enough hard drive space for all their games. You can still claim your free game and just wait to download it.

Here are instructions on re-downloading online purchases content. (http://support.xbox.com/en-US/xbox-360/downloadable-content/redownload-content)

Friday, August 1, 2014

LED Desk Lamp Hack

Here you can see all the components used in the lamp. It originally used E14 small screw 40w incandescent bulb. And has been modified to use 8 bright white LEDs.

The circuit is pretty simple. I'm using the innards of a 120V AC to 6V DC transformer in series with an 8.2 ohm resistor to power the LEDs. The original 120V AC power cord and switch is soldered onto the 120 V input of the transformer. 
Then I made my own LED grid using 4 white LED pairs in parallel. Then soldered some long wires to feed down through the tube to the transformer. And finally, soldering the LEDs and the 8.2 ohm resistor to the 6V DC output on the transformer.




I used a water bottle lid to separate the LED grid from the metal arm that used to hold the old bulb. This is to ensure nothing would short out.

The final result is a nice warm white light that is just right for illuminating my desk.

NOTE: I had all of this stuff laying around I thought I'd put them to good use. It really isn't necessary to use a 10W 8.2 ohm resistor.

UPDATE: I've since replaced the internal electronics with just a 5V 400ma 120VAC tranformer with no resistor. While it worked before, It was a little too dim for use at my workbench.