h a l f b a k e r y
Expensive, difficult, slightly dangerous, not particularly effective... I'm on a roll.
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The idea is a cube containing a set of digital timers (two or more) which is placed on a horizontal surface (desk or shelf). The color facing up determines which timer is activated. When the cube is inverted, the top timer freezes and new color facing up resumes running.
The use I can think of besides
serving as a chess timer, is to monitor how much time you (or your kids) actually spend on certain activities: watching TV, Internet, homework, chores etc.
The advantage of this device is that its state and control doesn't involve pressing buttons or reading a display, it's just watching the color facing up and just flipping the cube over.
Working this device does still require certain effort and awareness, but the results can help to use our precious time better, after all we only have 168 hours a week most of which we don't really H_A_V_E.
[po, Oct 04 2004]
||Make it both aggregate time spent with that face up, and the time since the last turn, and some way to reset to aggregates, and you get my croissant. Actually, you get it anyway (I like multicolor cubes and digital timers).
||There's a cube-shaped countdown timer, with five standard amounts of time (ten, fifteen, thirty minutes, etc.). Its blank face is the "off" position. I don't think it has a display. And I can't find an online reference to it.
It could be redesigned to count up.
||wouldn't it just be green?