It’s all very well but…

English: photocell
English: photocell (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The world has gone gadget mad, the more wealthy of civilisation that is for there are numerous people in the world who cannot afford to eat never mind thinking about buying gadgetry. Those who have the money to lavish upon the latest tablet, smart phone, laptop or anything else that connects them to the Internet seem never to be satisfied. I wonder how many hours of those people’s lives are wasted browsing on their devices. Some will say and do say that these devices can be very useful tools to have at our disposal for times when things go wrong or when information is needed. Well I have to concur but I know that I will most probably only use my (smart) phone other than for communicating very rarely if ever for anything else. Whilst using my new phone it has become apparent that it gobbles up power! So that I can see more clearly how much power is left on the device I downloaded an application that monitors power consumption and displays the amount of power available as a percentage, far easier than trying to gauge it just by looking at the little green icon. It is of course the screen which uses the most power but applications left running in the background can do the same. This means that if I were to be constantly surfing the Internet or playing games the battery would soon be depleted, not a good idea for someone who relies upon her phone for business. The problem will not arise in my case though but it probably will for those who like to spend a lot of time using their devices away from home. So I got to thinking that people must need to carry around with them the charger and lead so they can top-up the battery if they can find somewhere to do that, if they wish to spend hours on their phones or other devices. Not very practical is it? So again I got to thinking why manufactures haven’t developed devices which charge themselves when in an illuminated place using photo cell technology, it’s not a new idea, it is used elsewhere in electronic devices. Size matters though and perhaps the technology is too cumbersome to incorporate within small phones but it should be possible to incorporate in larger devices such as laptops and tablets for topping-up when the device is idle. Just a thought. If an ordinary charger cannot be used a purpose-built plug-in photo cell charger could be carried to charge the device instead and indeed these devices are available though they tend to be pre-charged batteries and not dynamic photo cell chargers.

Fueltank 5
Fueltank 5 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is all very well having this wonderful technology but power is needed to keep them working!

Shirley Anne


Author: Shirley Anne

Happy to be alive because of Jesus

9 thoughts on “It’s all very well but…”

  1. Of course, as someone for whom the Internet is a living I’d contend that the time spent playing isn’t wasted 🙂

    I suggest turning your phone to 2G rather than 3G and turning off the data and wifi connections when you aren’t using them. Then your phone battery will miraculously last for a day or two.

    At a guess solar cells are too fragile for inclusion in a phone.

  2. Is playing games a part of your living then Jenny? I was referring to those who spend or waste their time (a matter of personal choice of course) idly playing games or using functions just for the sake of it. Not sure about switching to 2G or how to do that but in fact it would be a waste of time for me as the battery doesn’t get drained now that I am aware of its limitations and the fact that my phone usually sits idly in my handbag most of the day. I don’t switch off my Bluetooth connection in case I forget to switch it on for use in my vehicle which is fitted with a hands-free system. It auto-connects when I switch on the ignition. I have found it uses very little power on standby that’s why I leave it on. Solar cells have been incorporated into other electronic devices but they only serve to top-up when the device is inactive. They are only as fragile as any other electronic component. I suppose they lack the power to charge fully quickly. Instead of trying to miniaturise phones any further why don’t they simply make the batteries a little larger? A phone can be too small for convenience just as it can be too large.

    Shirley Anne x

  3. For decades I did my travels across europe with my cameras and a few rolls of film, the light-meters worked by generating electricity according to the quantity of light hitting them which if I could be bothered to check my instincts would confirm my exposure settings. On my last trip the chargers, spare batteries and adapter s with their leads took up more weight and space than the old cameras did! Then there was the laptop to download the images to check things were working…Even then batteries would be found to be empty at inconvenient moments. As for phones, there is little chance of finding a charger for the hardly ever used phone when you leave your own at home, I have tried. How many types of charger leads and batteries are there out there now?

    Sometimes my thoughts drift towards going back to basics and just using a pinhole camera!!

  4. Funnily enough I’m ex-games-industry so I used to play games for a living I guess. But that’s another story…

    No, I spend an appreciable amount of time at the moment looking at apps from my employer’s competitors.

    Another thing you might look at is GPS, is that turned on on your phone? Find the settings application and have a look.

    Modern phones have a fairly robust chassis with all the fragile components hidden inside, by necessity a solar panel has to live on the outside where it is vulnerable. They seem to be getting bigger at the moment in the quest for more screen size, but sadly their processors are also getting more powerful, meaning that more space for batteries is soon eaten by a more capable processor. It makes you wish for the phone you had in the ’90s, doesn’t it.

  5. Fortunately chargers are slowly standardising on a micro-USB connector so unnless you have an iPhone the days of many chargers are receding.

  6. Yes I always wondered why there are/were so many different chargers but it was the same problem years ago in the electrical industry, a lack of compatibility. This was of course because manufacturers wanted only to promote their design in an effort to make everyone else conform. Things are changing slowly for the better. Pinhole cameras probably take just as good a picture as those with lenses but it all depends upon the quality of the film doesn’t it? Modern digital cameras now rival if not exceed the quality often associated with film especially if the printer and paper of of good quality.

    Shirley Anne x

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