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'[EE]: Alien timepiece'
2008\05\27@093738 by David VanHorn

picon face
I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.
The ideal design would be a modification of some casing that already
exists, and could actually be used to tell time.
I think that the basic idea of a wristwatch works, but I'm not
unnecessarily limiting myself to that.

I've considered a binary clock, and an LED design that uses
eye-scanning to produce the raster.

This is a one-off, for a con costume.

2008\05\27@104113 by D. Daniel McGlothin

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> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.


While not all aliens will have wrists, most all oughta have a tool bag,
so a pocket watch form-factor might work too.

Using a miniature LCD, use "organic" shaped color blobs to sequence the
hours/minutes. Perhaps use shape for the larger increments, and
repeating color fades for the seconds.

Use something like a pingpong ball lens, with the home world image
thereon, and have led trace the path of the home star's path through the
sky.  Sorta like the Geoclock in 3D.

Maybe an abacus-style presentation.  Have the base to represent the
natural number of digits of the critter using the watch.

Consider adjusting the hours/minutes/seconds in a day to time-segments
representative of the home world.

Perhaps the native is non-sighted, so perhaps a watch that continuously
purrs/coughs/grunts/snarls the time.


Have fun!

Daniel

2008\05\27@110909 by Jake Anderson

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David VanHorn wrote:
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.
> The ideal design would be a modification of some casing that already
> exists, and could actually be used to tell time.
> I think that the basic idea of a wristwatch works, but I'm not
> unnecessarily limiting myself to that.
>
> I've considered a binary clock, and an LED design that uses
> eye-scanning to produce the raster.
>
> This is a one-off, for a con costume.
>  
assuming that they will probably like us wind up with the simplest thing
that does the job being the most prevalent, I'd guess their time pieces
would probably look a whole bunch like ours, possibly with a different
font. Assuming you want it for some sort of cool factor, I'd replace the
hands with a circular band with some sort of dark light indication on it
(day and night), graduated into some sort of segments to indicate their
equivalent of hours.

Read the time by looking at the (now moving) hours segment against a
fixed (say 12:00) marker point that fills the roles of the hands.
Basically turn the watch inside out, best bit is it should be a pretty
simple mod to a standard  (mechanical) watch, for bonus points though
make it run counter-clockwise ;->

2008\05\27@111819 by Detrick Merz

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What about a series of countdowns?  Maybe they rely less on knowing
what time of day is, and more on time relative to other events.  How
long until supper?  How long until I fly to the next planet?  How long
before I change my underwear?

How about basing it on martian time, and reporting sunrise, sunset, as
well as moonrise and set times for both moons?  Maybe earthrise and
set too, and a countdown until takeover/annihilation :)

{Quote hidden}

2008\05\27@113104 by David VanHorn

picon face
> While not all aliens will have wrists, most all oughta have a tool bag,
> so a pocket watch form-factor might work too.

Well, this alien (me) still has wrists.  The basic idea is "colonist",
though I like the idea of alien script and markings.

2008\05\27@113328 by David VanHorn

picon face
> assuming that they will probably like us wind up with the simplest thing
> that does the job being the most prevalent, I'd guess their time pieces
> would probably look a whole bunch like ours, possibly with a different
> font.

This is the direction I'm thinking.. Form follows function, and the
more utilitarian the device, the more this is true.
My "colonist" charachter would be very utilitarian, but might have the
odd "heirloom from terra"

2008\05\27@114206 by Dave Schmidt

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I'd like to think that they are living a less pressured life and have no
need for exact timing and their internal biological clock works just
fine for their needs. I know I'd like to be less tied to 'time'.

How about a celestial navigation gizmo on their 'wrist' instead of a
timepiece?  Spinning orbs, galaxies, gravitational grids and wells?

2008\05\27@120603 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.

How about displaying the time base-N, where N varies with time? Bonus
points for using a different sets of symbols for each N (or the same
symbols, but with different weights depending on the N). And simple N^0
N^1 N^2 N^3 weight sequences are for dummies, think of something more
creative. An who says each weight position has to use the same set of
symbols? Best of all: the actual time "string" is a constant (so you can
omit it), only show the base. But how do you code that base?

--

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu

2008\05\27@121627 by Peter

picon face

Use miniature starburst led digits to display time as 5 digits, using some
segment patterns you make up (one segment pattern per decimal digit). For hints
as to what this looks like find an image of the vinyl LP cover 'Ghost in the
Machine' from Police. The last (5th) digit would actually show seconds from 0 to
9 (change every second), with the pattern for zero distinctive enough that it
would allow a person to pick up the patterns by counting from it (from the
'zero' on the seconds digit), and thus be able to read time.

Peter

PS: You beat me to it, I also had something like this in line, but for real not
for a costume.

PS2: cover art looks very much like this:
http://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Machine-Police/dp/B000002GF4

but the colors are much better on the vinyl sleeve

2008\05\27@150207 by James Newton

face picon face
Two lines of LED's oriented perpendicular to one another in the shape of a
"T".

The top of the T periodically displays the left most led on, then quickly
sequences from left to right.

As that sequence is happening, the vertical section of the T puts out a
pattern that builds the time in hour and minutes as if it were on a
propeller clock.

If the eye follows the sequence on the top of the T, persistence of vision
will (should, may, might, could) cause the image of the time to become
visible.

It is a digital, no moving parts, version of the propeller clock, pendulum
in the air, persistence of vision displays. The difference being that the
eye, and not the display elements, move.

I've long assumed such a thing would work, but have never seen one.

Aliens with much more advancement than we would have HUDs or ocular
implants.

--
James.

{Original Message removed}

2008\05\27@151919 by PAUL James

picon face

Why not just stowe away on the next space shuttle, go to an alien
Wal-Mart, and pick up one of whatever is there regarding timepieces?

{Original Message removed}

2008\05\27@153407 by Mark Rages

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On Tue, May 27, 2008 at 8:37 AM, David VanHorn <spam_OUTmicrobrixTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.
> The ideal design would be a modification of some casing that already
> exists, and could actually be used to tell time.
> I think that the basic idea of a wristwatch works, but I'm not
> unnecessarily limiting myself to that.
>

a watch where the face turns once per day.  24 tics for the hour, and
a vernier scale for minutes.
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
.....markragesKILLspamspam@spam@midwesttelecine.com

2008\05\27@164523 by M. Adam Davis

face picon face
If you had the money and time, this would be interesting:
http://www.engadget.com/2008/04/19/urwerks-ur-202-combines-turbines-and-watches-just-how-you-alway/

If you like explaining things, just wear a blank metal bracelet, and
tell people it emits x-rays on it's display that you can see.
Alternately, put a vibrating motor inside with a touch sensor and tell
them it's tactile.

Make a tiny LED matrix with a uC and accelerometer.  Do interesting
things with it.

Using the same setup a hospital uses, detect blood oxygenation and
pulse (red LED, infrared LED against skin on back of watch).  Have a
display that counts down the number of hearbeats you have left, or
beeps if you're getting too much/too little oxygen (it'll be fiddly -
not a terribly accurate measurement, but it can still be fun, even if
simulated.)

A watch, for us, tells us where we are in relation to time.  Perhaps
as an alien that information is not useful to you, so a GPS watch
might be used to tell you where you are in relation to one of the
other three dimensions.  With a suitably trippy design you could also
have a watch tell you where you are in hyperspace.  Alternately, for a
suitably geeky crowd, claim you are a two dimensional creature and
must use a time/space piece to determine your position in other
dimensions that humans natively understand.

Maybe you don't care about time or place, but your relation to your
'kin'.  Disassemble a Boost i425 phone ($40 for 14 days, includes
phone), load Mologogo, and put it back together in a watch form
factor.  Shows you where your friends are.  Could be made _reasonably_
compact, though fragile without all that protective, supportive
plastic.

Perhaps you're kind has gone beyond petty feelings and is completely
logical, but the process has eliminated the ability to sense one's
physical needs.  Have a watch that constantly streams your body's
status "...tired...hungry...left shoulder joint
aches...bitter...feelings of resentment towards nurturing
elders...annoying buzzing near head...falling..."  Could probably
eliminate the display and have it audio with piezo (smaller) use one
of the audio compression routines on the list and have ir run at a low
enough volume that it's not understood without being near the ear, but
can be readily heard by those around you - a low, steady, quick stream
of speech. Maybe a blinking light occasionally for 'important'
messages.  Hold near ear and dash for the exit occasionally...

-Adam

On 5/27/08, David VanHorn <microbrixspamKILLspamgmail.com> wrote:
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.
> The ideal design would be a modification of some casing that already
> exists, and could actually be used to tell time.
> I think that the basic idea of a wristwatch works, but I'm not
> unnecessarily limiting myself to that.
>
> I've considered a binary clock, and an LED design that uses
> eye-scanning to produce the raster.
>
> This is a one-off, for a con costume.
> -

2008\05\27@205016 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On May 27, 2008, at 6:37 AM, David VanHorn wrote:
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a  
> wristwatch.

Get some ideas here: http://www.tokyoflash.com/en/watches/1/  ?

BillW

2008\05\27@210430 by David VanHorn

picon face
> Get some ideas here: http://www.tokyoflash.com/en/watches/1/  ?

http://www.tokyoflash.com/en/watches/e35/geomesh/

This one is a candidate!  No text or numbers on it in any known
language, a very utilitarian look.  :)   Thanks!

2008\05\28@030616 by Cedric Chang

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1440 minutes in one day
86,400 seconds per day

Show  the minutes of the day in binary
( requires 11 bits, 11 LEDs or annunciators )
Show  the seconds of the day
( requires 17  bits, 17 LEDs or annunciators )

----------------------------------------
Have a vibrator that reports the time inaudibly using finger touch to  
activate the watch and a finger to sense the time reported in binary  
or some other code.
pulse medium =1  pulse short = 0  pulse long = delimiter

example 1:    medium short medium long medium short short short  = 5:08

--------------------------------------
play low level audio tones that require user to put watch up to ear.
( shades of close encounters    http://www.wavcentral.com/sounds/
movies/closenc/close02.mp3 )

cc

2008\05\28@110718 by alan smith

picon face
I just read in the paper about a new watch from some high end swiss company, it doesnt tell time, just lets you know if its night or day.  Hmmmm.  The reason is...according to the company, that certain high end customers never care what time it is, just want something different.
 
 Wow...wish they were on my customer list.

Mark Rages <.....markragesKILLspamspam.....gmail.com> wrote:
 On Tue, May 27, 2008 at 8:37 AM, David VanHorn wrote:
> I need some ideas, for producing an "alien" timepiece, similar to a wristwatch.
> The ideal design would be a modification of some casing that already
> exists, and could actually be used to tell time.
> I think that the basic idea of a wristwatch works, but I'm not
> unnecessarily limiting myself to that.
>

a watch where the face turns once per day. 24 tics for the hour, and
a vernier scale for minutes.
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
EraseMEmarkragesspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTmidwesttelecine.com

2008\05\28@141821 by Peter Todd

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On Wed, May 28, 2008 at 08:06:54AM -0700, alan smith wrote:
> I just read in the paper about a new watch from some high end swiss company, it doesnt tell time, just lets you know if its night or day.  Hmmmm.  The reason is...according to the company, that certain high end customers never care what time it is, just want something different.
>    
>   Wow...wish they were on my customer list.

Remember the name of the watch by any chance? Maybe I can learn
something about marketing from them... :P

- --
http://petertodd.org 'peter'[:-1]@petertodd.org
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2008\05\28@150046 by Shawn Tan

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On Wednesday 28 May 2008 19:16:15 Peter Todd wrote:
> >   Wow...wish they were on my customer list.
>
> Remember the name of the watch by any chance? Maybe I can learn
> something about marketing from them... :P

blogs.wsj.com/wealth/2008/04/25/the-300000-watch-that-doesnt-tell-ti=
me/

=2D-=20
with metta,
Shawn Tan

Aeste Works (M) Sdn Bhd - Engineering Elegance
http://www.aeste.net

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2008\05\30@004114 by David Schmidt

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This is a nice watch!
http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/watches/a890/?cpg=wnrss


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