Dell E1505 strangeness

I updated from 10.3 this weekend and have run into some odd problems.
First off is a cosmetic issue that just might be symptomatic of a larger
one. The lights that tell me caps-lock, num-lock, scroll-lock, wifi-on,
and bluetooth-on work just fine up until I log in (Gnome). At which point
they go dark. This didn’t used to happen on 10.3.

I don’t know what module drives that, and I admit it could be BIOS.
Knowing where to poke my fingers to try and figure out what’s wrong will
help all around ;).

The second issue is the screen brightness settings. Using the Fn-key I can
raise and lower it in steps. I didn’t expect to be able to do that from
linux since I always thought that’d be a windows-only thing on these
laptops. Nice. Unfortunately, it seems that the ‘repeat’ setting is set
w-a-y aggressive, as I can’t just get a single level of increase, I get 3
or more levels. Or decrese. When the laptop has been idle for a while it
does a very Apple thing of dim the screen a bit, and getting it back
to full brightness requires lots of fiddling.

Considering that the Fn-key stuff allows me to send the laptop to sleep
mode directly, I’m /guessing/ this functionality is driven through ACPI
but I’m not sure. Is it?

Stacatto signals of constant information
A loose affiliation of millionares, and billionares, baby
These are the days of miracle and wonder
– Boy in the Bubble, Paul Simon