If energy needs to be saved, there are good ways to do it.
                                                               Government product regulation is not one of them

Monday, December 12, 2011

New Book on Home Lighting

Update 17 May 2012 with video promotion by the author, see end section

No, not a book lamenting the demise of the simple cheap bright broad spectrum Edison light bulb - rather the opposite, but hang on...

Book Review

Losing Edison
By James Bedell

Available via Amazon for Kindle reader around 11 dollars, other options click on image or the book title above.
Print-On-Demand version coming, says the author.

Since this book was written to show that phasing-out incandescents does not matter in making good lighting choices I was a bit sceptical, on getting a copy for review....

As the author introduces himself on his website
"It is my belief that all good lighting design must be sustainable lighting design."

But don't be deceived by the title,
it does therefore go way beyond that issue.

The author says it was his first attempt at any public writing longer than a blog post, but this certainly does not come across.
It is also well illustrated, both with useful functional drawings by the author, and photographs.

While on the content side I (and others) would argue that with incandescents one can make even better choices in some described situations, it is really a book about understanding lighting as a whole, and about how lighting designers reach their decisions.
As such it is of value not only to anyone making lighting choices, but also I would suggest to lighting designers themselves, in the breadth of the issues raised, which includes a very useful concluding part about how lighting designer work fits in with architects, interior designers, builders...

But to take first things first, in this book of three parts.

Part I,
usefully covers definitions such as lumens (which everyone will have to deal with rather than Watts), color temperature, color rendering index (CRI), and their roles.
It also covers Halogens, CFLs and LEDs in that respect, with good tips on what to look for in buying them, depending on the purpose they are for
- and with a good US Department of Energy Lighting Facts Label illustration.

EISA specifications follow, that is until 2014
(EISA specifications will also rule out the replacement Halogens in following years,
but fortunately for the sake of lighting advice, given also that the author is not overly fond of their still relatively high metered electricity use, Halogens are included in the book).

Then, different uses of different lighting and typical running costs based on defined electricity rates finish the first part.

In Part II,
the three basic concepts of residential lighting are covered,
ambient, accent, and task lighting,
with explanations of the principles involved in reaching relevant decisions of what
to use and how to use it.

Apart from the various types of lamp lighting and uses,
natural light and fire in various forms are included too, in a comprehensive overview.

Lighting control is not forgotten,
explaining the three major types of control systems:
local dimming/switching, single area controls, and whole-home systems.

As the author says, a common failure in lighting control is that the controls, whether a slide dimmer or a keypad, are misplaced in the room.
Ever on the sustainability note (which recurs with useful savings tips throughout),
a reminder how dimming makes lighting more sustainable.

for completion, outdoor Lighting is also covered:
Acknowledging that not everyone has such surroundings (or control of them),
entryways driveways and Walkways, patios and decks, trees/shrubbery are mentioned:
"Outdoor and landscape lighting is probably the least thought-out aspect of residential lighting for most homes."

The final Part III,
then takes a given lighting idea from concept to implementation.

Or, to put it as an edited extract:
"Having a lighting designer on board, let's figure out who else should
be on your team. I'm going to assume that all projects have an
electrical contractor and, in many cases, a general contractor.
Since we're talking about lighting design here, I've broken down potential
projects into three basic categories, which will serve as a rough
guide to who should be on your team:
1. Re-lighting a room. Here's a good opportunity to work with a
lighting designer; no other designers/collaborators are necessary.
2. Redecorating a room. If there are one or more spaces in your home
you'd like to redecorate, it's time to bring in an interior designer.
3. Total Renovation. If you are gutting one or multiple sections of
your home, you'll need the most complete team. Here's where bringing
in an architect."

Helpful advice on finding good architects, interior designers and lighting designers follows, along with choosing and working with project managers,
creating project budgets - and indeed sticking to them, and to any time limit that may apply.

Again, with practical and easily forgotten tips,
such as designing with an eye toward maintenance,
and guides to buying light fixtures as well as light bulbs.

The author also helpfully offers to give further advice to readers, in respect of his time.

To sum up then,
do not be misled (one way or the other) by the title of the book.
Edison is still included, of sorts, in describing the use of Halogen incandescent derivatives, and the book usefully covers home lighting in all its aspects.

(Look forward to that whiskey bottle now James ;-) )

Here is an update video by James himself talking about his book, including promotion price $4.99 for May 2012:



Danny said...

Thanks Peter
will check this out

Anonymous said...

good review did you hear when printed form coming
would be handy when going round house and checking to have as book

Anonymous said...

how many pages?
Amazon never say
File Size: 3098 KB what does that mean? :-)
looked in book preview pages also not say no page numbers with chapter headings

Lighthouse said...

RE when printed coming
Don't know, maybe James will let us know if he reads this
It's print on demand - would be interesting to know any experiences with this (customer or author)

RE how many pages
Yeah, I found that too with Amazon and others,
no real idea of book sizes
Maybe they mean the page sizes, and therefore amount of pages, varies with different size screens, but still...(they could say with their own Kindle and "standard size text")

There's a good recent e-book (of opposite political persuasion to the above, as it happens)
"I Light Bulb, A Death Row Testimonial" by M.P. Leahy with bonus e-book by Howard Brandston
"The Disastrous Light Bulb Ban"
here on Amazon
but, as I discovered, really 2 articles rather than 2 books, in fairness reflected in the price
Amazon Kindle Price: $2.34

I see File Size: 728 KB in that case,
so start figuring out those file sizes!

Howard Brandston also with "real book"
Learning to See: A Matter of Light by Howard M. Brandston (Hardcover - Jun 15, 2008)
"2 new from $199.48" (?) sure must be a tome :-)

Might get into some more reviewing

Lighthouse said...

RE number of pages
After all that,
forgot to say that James's book here is over 150 pages in e-mobi reader,
that seem about half the size of paperback pages.

razell said...

i will check this out. and i will ask a Sydney Electrical for review

Yoko said...

Nice review! Definitely going to check it out one of these days. Most likely through Amazon, sadly I might get the book version instead of the ebook. My kindle is kind of messed up at the moment. Thanks anyway!
Lighting Design

Lighthouse said...

Thanks Yoko,
I believe there is only an e-book version (it's not long enough for a book),
but it works through a lot of readers apart from Amazon, including free online readers that you can search for (that's what I used)

Lighting control said...

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