Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Light clock

Time is shown by pin points of light
 
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The light clock on first inspection seems to be nothing more than a black ball with a small discrete button at the base. When said button is pressed the top hemi-sphere of the ball snaps open into quarters and internal shutters also fold out to cover the gaps.

Along these segments at different levels are the markings for the hour, minute and second. (In that order from the top of the segments) The actual time is shown on these markings by small points of light.

These lights are connected to the clock mechanism and as the clock moves through the various minutes and hours the small pointers move along the path of the markings allowing you to tell the time. In order to save battery power the clock’s lights would only be turned on when the clock was actually opened.

The mechanism is accessed through a small twist of panel at its base. The size of the clock would be roughly 6cm x 6cm x 6cm so that it fits comfortably into your palm. It is used like a pocket watch and is kept in your pocket. A chain is optional and would be attached to a hook/fastening at the equator of the ball.

The outside of the ball and the clock face would be adorned with “mysterious” symbols with no real meaning, which would be there for the sole reason of making it seem more mysterious and alien to those who don’t know what it is, thus enhancing the surprise and awe when it is opened.

talen, Jan 20 2003

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       This is impossible to visualize.
waugsqueke, Jan 20 2003
  

       Why? Think black ball, snap open top, instead of hands, points of light show the time.   

       Please don't say this another idea down the shitter.
talen, Jan 20 2003
  

       // the top hemi-sphere of the ball snaps open into quarters and internal shutters also fold out to cover the gaps. //   

       This bit - I can't picture it. I'm not crapping on your idea, I just can't picture it.
waugsqueke, Jan 20 2003
  

       Think that you are looking down on the top of the ball. It is equally divided into quarters. When the button is pressed these open out like flower petals. This leaves gaps in between; the other fold out sections fills these gaps. (Probably made of a slightly flexible plastic)Thus, forming a solid circlular hollow type thing around the top.   

       I hope that's helped. If not FarmerJohn might be able to help.
talen, Jan 20 2003
  

       Gaps in between what? And what other fold out sections? Those are the points not clear.   

       Also, the whole point of this folding out business is not evident. If it's just to 'open' the thing, could you just use a lid or a door? (again, this is probably because I can't picture it.)
waugsqueke, Jan 20 2003
  

       The top hemishpere is made up of 4 sections, these fold out. Because these sections are quarters there will be gaps between them. Inside the clock are more quarter sections which then also fold out. Think a ring of quarter-spheres ling the top, forming a zig-zag edge.   

       Maybe I should just use a door/hatch?
talen, Jan 20 2003
  

       not the easiest thing in the world to imagine, but the Monty Python song on your profile quite made my day
po, Jan 20 2003
  

       Why thank you.
talen, Jan 20 2003
  

       Picture the stem end of an orange. The top opens something like that I imagine. I'm trying to work out how the points of light work in with the rest of it. Is the face the part that folds out?   

       I do like the idea of the mysterious alien clock.   

       + from me.
RayfordSteele, Jan 20 2003
  

       Yes it is the face that folds out. The points of light are set at an angle and move round just like normal hands. Each point of light shows the time by it's position on the lines on the face.
talen, Jan 21 2003
  
      
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