Interesting error #967

I found an interesting error the other day. Not one I was expecting, and definitely one I hadn’t tested for!

CBCTThis year, in a fit of minimalism our only Christmas decoration (apart from cards) was a CodeBug Colour Tail, tethered to a Raspberry Pi.

The CodeBug played the part of tree and lights.

And I wrote a lights program a day, in python, until I settled upon one that I liked.

on running for longer periods I noticed that the Colour Tail would stop dead. A couple of times the Pi had crashed as well. I obviously had a bug in my python code. I checked it. Rewrote the code. Rebuilt the Pi image. Same problem – random crashes.

It settled into a routine of failing, randomly, any time from a minute after starting, to 12 hours later. But would definitely fail at least once a day, and often more.

That is until 4 days ago. Since when the Colour Tail program will now run all day long, until I close down the Pi.

LED LampSo what has changed? I haven’t altered anything for days. I did though notice, on the first day the program ran error free, that one of our LED ceiling lights had half-blown.

Since then the CodeBug Colour Tail has run perfectly.

I am not saying that the LED light was the cause. It could be that the after 2 weeks of running the Colour Tail has ‘burnt in‘, but it does seem mighty coincidental. Reading about electrical interference from LEDs and noting that there was less than 6’ between bulb and CodeBug / Colour Tail, I concluded that there was a strong possibility I had found the cause.

So I have now added a new item to my ever lengthening ‘Testing Checklist‘. LED Lighting?