Ambient Light Sensor Hackery

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mergemedia, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. mergemedia macrumors member

    mergemedia

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    Hello folks,

    I have a 15" Macbook Pro. I am constanly annoyed by the ambient light sensor, as my office is dimly lit. When I move my hand around typing, the ambient light sensor will turn the keyboard backlight on and off, and dim my screen. Can I just disable it and toggle my backlight on and off myself?

    I see the option in display to disable the auto screen adjustment, but nothing about the keyboard. I did a bit of googling about it and found a few sites which talk about how to manipulate the daemon which runs the ambient light sensor to do various things like change the wallpapers, but I can't find a clear answer on how to simply disable it.

    Any darwin hackers here care to share a clue with me? :)

    thanks!
     
  2. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    #2
    There's a simple program called LabTick that allows you to manually adjust the keyboard backlight level.
     
  3. cblackburn macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #3
    Go to System Preferences --> Keyboard and Mouse. Then click on the keyboard tab, about halfway down there should be a checkbox called "Illuminate keyboard in low light conditions". Uncheck it to stop automatic lighting up. They keyboard will still light up manually if you use F9 + F10.

    Chris
     
  4. MaaseyRacer macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, Ca.
    #4
    Your solution is F8 F9 and F10. You do not need to install any crappy 3rd party software.
     
  5. mergemedia thread starter macrumors member

    mergemedia

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #5
    If I uncheck the checkbox labeled "Illuminate keyboard in low light conditions" the F8, F9, and F10 keys no longer control the backlight.
    When they're pressed, it brings up the small backlight menu, but it has a circle with a slash through it, as to signify it is disabled.

    The F8, F9 and F10 keys work normally, until my hand moves across the speakers in a certain way.
    Occasionaly it's enough to trigger the ambient light sensor, and it dims them way down, or shuts them off and on.

    I just want a simple toggle to say ON or OFF, regardless to what the ambient light sensor has the say about it.

    Does it exist? :(
     
  6. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
  7. biturbomunkie macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Location:
    cali
    #7
    another vote for LT. :)
     
  8. Monk Edsel macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
  9. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pa
  10. Tom McMahon macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Location:
    Orlando, Florida
    #10
    <If I uncheck the checkbox labeled "Illuminate keyboard in low light conditions" the F8, F9, and F10 keys no longer control the backlight.
    When they're pressed, it brings up the small backlight menu, but it has a circle with a slash through it, as to signify it is disabled.>

    False - F8, F9, and F10 still control the back light....however (and this is the kicker), as the sensor is still active (even after unchecking the box) light conditions need to be below what Apple considers "low light" for the keyboard back light to work. IE : right now sitting in my living room at 11:04am there is too much light and I get circle slash. If I take the laptop into my bathroom and close the door (no windows = much less ambient) the circle slash goes away and TADA, my keyoard is lit. Its a little frustrating because I couldn't find any documentation on this and originally thought my MBP was broken. Then I did some experimenting and figured out the above.
     

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