Windows only: You squeeze every bit of customisation and productivity out of your computer, why let those lazy keyboard LEDs sit idle? Put them to work as network activity indicators.
Network Lights is a tiny application that turns the NumLock and ScrollLock keyboard indicators into incoming and outgoing network traffic indicators. Check out our video here to see the lights in action. The video starts with some simple browsing—we were looking for a Linux ISO to grab in order to really light things up—and by the end of the video you see the burst of blinking that occurs when the large ISO download was underway.
In addition to turning your keyboard lights into indicators, Network Lights also keeps stats on your network activity if you're curious. Note: If you run the app and nothing happens, right click on the system tray icon and open the Settings dialogue. Check the box that says "Force Keyboard Capture". Despite it being tagged as a solution for older motherboards, our test machine has a motherboard manufactured within the last year and an equally as new keyboard, and we needed to use the force capture function.
Network Lights is freeware, Windows only. If you know of another app that helps you squeeze some usefulness out of your computer in an unexpected way, let's hear about it in the comments.