An image from the future past.
(via via @stevenf)
Dodgey99 built an Arduino-powered Etch-a-Sketch clock, in which a pair of stepper motors painstakingly draw out the current time. It's got a very low refresh rate, though: the limits of the motors and the Etch-a-Sketch means that it takes more than a minute to display the time, and it needs a couple of minutes' rest between each number. There's a plan to accelerate things with some beefier motors.
I use an Arduino driving two very cheap darlington stepper drivers with 64:1 internally reduced steppers for the drawing. For the rotation I'm using an Easy-Driver driving a Nema 17 stepper.
I also have a DS1307RTC real time clock installed so it always knows the time. Setting the time is a one-off via USB connected to a PC. Once done, you un-tether, and then the RTC keeps the time, for up to a year on the rechargeable battery, or so I'm told...
The code is actually very simple, it's just a pain drawing the numbers!
The G clamp on the back is for a counter balance until I find something more elegant!
The steppers are far too slow to write the time in under a minute so I delay it for a couple of mins between each draw. Mostly to give the very hot motors a while to cool off and to give the etch a sketch a break!
Kyle writes, "I just launched my first Kickstarter for this Steampunk flavoured Nixie clock in black walnut or (optionally) purpleheart. Comes with a proper adaptor for whichever country you should happen to live, and has a customizable triple LED backlight (over 700 colour choices!)."
Kyle's bio shows a long career in prop production and other makerish pursuits, suggesting that he's capable of fulfilling commissions on deadlines. Clocks start at CAD$549. Read the rest
The Kudoktopus watch is the €30,000 creation of Stefan Kudoke in collaboration with Maria and Richard Habring. Out of my price range by a damned sight, but it gives me pleasure to consider a timepiece with such tentacly wonderfulness lurking within its display face. Read the rest
Jeffrey sez, "The renowned 360 photographer Andrea Biffi has posted complete instructions for building your own Nixie Tube clock, even including how to etch your own circuit board. While the process seems to be slightly more difficult that 'total noob' difficulty (also, with nixie tubes, hazardous voltages are involved, so be careful!), it looks like loads of fun, with an absolutely beautiful end product."
Ringclock is an Indiegogo-funded, LED-lit stainless steel fidget ring that tells the time. It has a wireless charger and is very handsomely styled -- reminiscent of Kinekt's brilliant gear rings. However, they're sold as "water resistant" and unsuitable for showers or handwashing, which sounds like a recipe for an expensive disaster, especially as they're $235 for pre-order.
TokyoFlash's new Kisai Console Wood watch has a gorgeous sandalwood bracelet and a groovy LED-lit display that nestles directly in the sweet-spot between functional and ornamental. It comes with your choice of blue or green LEDs and red or dark sandalwood, and charges over USB. I'm partial (very, very partial) to the dark wood. Wow. Read the rest
Russian Polar Expedition watch from 1969 - produced by Raketa [Sosoev/Wikimedia Commons]
Polish leatherworker MK makes some very nice wrist-straps for pocket-watches and car-watches. He's not the only one making these, but I find them particularly handsome, and rather nice retro-modern take on the massive wristwatch phenomenon.
Geoffrey McGann, a southern California artist, was arrested at Oakland airport for wearing an assemblage sculpture/watch he'd made. The TSA were also worried because he had a lot of insoles in his shoes. He was eventually released on $150,000 bail.
OAKLAND, Calif. -- A Southern California man was arrested at Oakland International Airport after security officers found him wearing an unusual watch they said could be used to make a timing device for a bomb, authorities said Friday... McGann told Transportation Security Administration officers that he's an artist and the watch is art, Nelson said.
Geoffrey McGann, Man With Strange Watch, Arrested At Oakland Airport [AP] (Thanks to everyone who suggested this!) Read the rest
Today's the day when Americans, Canadians, and others across the pond turn their clocks back (we in the UK beat you to it by a week). In honor of that momentous occasion, the Vintage Ads LJ group has a fine collection of clock ads from the past. Here are two of the best, found by nolock_boston: Telechron, GE Computer Radio (which I covet with the intensity of a thousand suns).