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of time and the river
I had my first week of class last week. It was mostly syllabus-going over, classmate-greeting, self-introducing business. It's strange to suddenly be constantly, insanely busy during the school term after being constantly non-busy during break. I already miss puttering around the apartment, organizing random things, playing video games and the unabashed slacking I've been doing for the past month.

One of my first assignments is to program a series of clocks using Processing (as it says "an open source programming language and environment for people who want to program images, animation, and interactions"). It is not a super-complicated language and is fairly easy to pick up just through the web and a book or two.

But enough about that. Clocks are rad. The first two clocks we need to program are supposed to mimic an analog clock and a digital LED clock. The rest can be whatever kinds of clocks we feel like making. I want to make a clock based on the movements of my cat throughout the day. I have no idea what that means graphically yet but I find it entertaining to think of a clock that meows everyday at 5am. I also want to make a clock out of sound. It could start by following the clock tower, church bell, bong pattern, but I also want the sound itself to be expressive of time passing. At certain intervals the sounds themselves get more frantic (i.e., right before the top of the hour, the sound is crazy and/or right before midnight). Something like that.

I've finished a working version of the LED clock and I can say plotting all the points for each section of the numbers is the most tedious thing I've done in a long time. So, just in case someone ever needs to script LEDs and doesn't feel like figuring out all the points on a graph, here are the coordinates for an 8 (which should cover all numbers 0-9). It's not the prettiest but I think you could make the middle bar a little thinner and it wouldn't be so clunky.

TOP BAR
10,0,50,40,150,40,190,0

TOP HALF, LEFT SIDE
0,10,0,130,40,100,40,50

TOP HALF, RIGHT SIDE
160,50,160,100,200,130,200,10

MIDDLE BAR
50,110,10,140,190,140,150,110
10,140,50,170,150,170,190,140

BOTTOM HALF, LEFT SIDE
0,150,0,270,40,240,40,180

BOTTOM HALF, RIGHT SIDE
160,180,160,240,200,270,200,150

BOTTOM BAR
50,250,10,280,190,280,150,250
10,280,20,300,180,300,190,280



Also of note, links for inspiration: 24 Creative Modern Clock Designs and Tokyoflash Japan.

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Monday, January 19, 2009 // 0 Comments


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