History of FireFly Magic®

An Idea is Born!

Stephen Taylor, inventor of Firefly Magic Firefly Lights lived on a ranch with a pond in North Texas with his wife Kim. During the spring and summer, fireflies also know as lightning bugs, would begin lighting up the evening near the water's edge. Growing up in Southern California, seeing fireflies flashing in the evening was a new and fun experience for Stephen, as he commented, "Someone should invent little lights that exactly recreate the look of Fireflies for kids who don’t grow up with them." Kim acknowledged the idea as they continued to watch Mother Nature's tiny little creatures with their glowing lanterns dance across the pond.

Years later, Stephen headed an electronics company, Sigma Two Group, and the kernel of an idea that began by a pond in North Texas has grown into an fun and amazing backyard entertainment lighting product that everyone can enjoy.

Unique Patented Technology

Stephen began research on a species of beetle called Lampyridae, also known as Fireflies or Lightning Bugs. The objective was to develop a method to accurately recreate the random and unique flash patterns of fireflies. This development process included acquiring information from some of the World’s leading university researchers on fireflies. For the uninitiated, fireflies use their flash patterns to communicate with a potential mate for reproduction. With over 200 firefly or lightning bug species in the United States, and 2,000 in the World, the variety of flash rates and colors was amazing.

Stephen's efforts culminated with the invention of a method for accurately emulating the visible electromagnetic spectrum emissions of member species of Arthropoda: Insecta: Coleoptera: Lampyridae by convergence of a programmable software program, a data memory, a data processor, a clock frequency timer, and visible light emitting device or devices. Subsequently, the United States Patent and Trademark office issued Patent number 7,212,932 to Stephen Taylor the inventor, and Managing Partner of Sigma Two Group LLC. In addition, Patent number D580,074 has also been issued to Stephen for the unique design of the 'Firefly LED' used in Firefly Magic 'Fireflies'.

Product Development

Having developed the technology to accurately mimic Mother Nature’s real fireflies, the next challenge was designing products that could use the advanced technology for a variety of commercial and residential applications. A milestone came when Stephen was contacted by Sara Lewis, Professor of Biology and head of firefly research at Tufts University in Massachusetts. Dr. Lewis wanted a device so accurately mimicking real fireflies, that it could be used as a lure for a specific species. Working closely with Dr. Lewis, Stephen developed battery operated devices that were used in the scientific study which was published in the American Naturalist. The first ‘electronic fireflies’ were manufactured in California and sold exclusively from Sigma Two’s Firefly Magic® Website. As popularity increased, a number of home improvement channels featured the product, including HGTV, Fine Living, DIY Network, Animal Planet, and the National Geographic Channel on their program Science of Summer.

Growth

Sales to commercial venues including zoos, nature museums, hotels, casinos, restaurants, and even stage and movie productions increased dramatically. At the same time, consumer purchases on the Firefly Magic® Website for backyard ‘Fireflies’ also continued to increase, as well as requests from retailers and landscapers who wanted to carry the product. However, with limited manufacturing capacity in Southern California, as well as high production costs, traditional retail channel distribution was not possible. The choice for Sigma Two Industries was to either continue with limited production or expand capacity.  The decision was made to increase capacity; Spartus Technology, LLC took on the task of designing and selling these products worldwide in 2013.

Expansion into Retail Market

2009 marks the introduction of the newly designed Solar & AA Battery Powered Firefly Magic® Firefly Lights, Models FMS-14 and FMS-07 for the retail market. Using the newest and most reliable laminated solar panels, along with high tech microprocessors and custom developed Light Emitting Diodes, the new, high quality Solar Powered Firefly Magic® Firefly Lights are a truly unique entertainment lighting product for backyards, gardens, and even indoors.

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