Sunday, July 16, 2006

Solving the iMac Night Light Problem: My latest measure

The G5 iMac screen cannot be turned off without putting the machine to sleep. My automated backups don't work when the machine is asleep. The light from the iMac, even at the lowest brightness session, illuminates my daughter's room. We can't shut the door because the air conditioner is in the computer room.

A conundrum. Others have variations of this.

One approach is to use a single black pixel as a screen saver, then tile it (Mac OSX Hints). I like my photo screensaver though, and switching screensavers night and day is a nuisance. Brightness Control is great, but the screen is not all that dark, and I think when the screensaver (photo show) turns on BC turns off.

Now I'm using Basic Black 2.0 (donationware, but I don't do PayPal. Wish Google Checkout did person-to-person payment). Of course that has the same issues as the single pixel problem. Except it occurred to me that I could make it the screensaver on the child account, and switching users is easy. So that's the compromise for the moment ...

Apple should have done something about this (hmpphh), but doubt they'll bother with it for their older machines.

Update 8/11/2007: Dockables screen sleep puts my iMac screen to sleep! I didn't think that was possible.

Update 5/22/2009: In 10.5 (Leopard) Apple added an undocumented screen off shortcut key.

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