Taiko watch uses minimal binary method to tell time

Design submitted by Wilhelm from South Africa.

Wilhelm says: The Taiko LED concept is an inspiration of a combination of Dieter Ram’s work and the analogue dialS of classic radio receivers to create a minimalistic watch with a retro sci-fi aviation appearance.

The watch casing is aluminium, housing a LED module with 16 LEDs, 4 LEDs underneath each of the 4 dark acrylic displays. Reading the time is by means of a combination of 2 binary methods.

The battery is rechargeable with a clip-on cradle type of charger.

It is for those who prefer a stylish retro styled LED binary watch which also compliments Dieter Ram’s design philosophy.

The Taiko’s lightweight rectangular shape will complement smaller wrists and it is easier to read than most binary watches, yet it still has that modern clean retro styled mysterious appearance.

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15 Responses to “Taiko watch uses minimal binary method to tell time”

  1. avatar Tokyoflash Japan Product Design Studio says:

    Telling the time with the absolute minimum indicators is an interesting thing to explore & its tough to get the right balance so that its easy/logical. This works well because there are only numbers 1-4 on the four sides of the square, so it doesn’t take much thinking to read it.
    This isn’t true binary which would use 1,2,4,8 for the 4 sides instead of 1,2,3,4 : but in this case it doesn’t really matter because it still gets the job done & is probably a little easier to add up.

    • avatar Wilhelm says:

      Thank you TF for posting my idea on your blog. You are quite right about real binary, but I’m glad you understand why I used the 1-2-3-4 method.

  2. avatar Anders S says:

    ‘Retro sci-fi aviation’… Ahh, three of my favourite words right there. =)

    To be honest binary is not really my thing, but this looks like it might be possible to read quick enough to be useable (for me). The styling is apposite, although I suspect the shape of the case might not be to everyone’s taste. It works for me though. =)
    good work, and good luck with it!

  3. avatar dzign555 says:

    Cool! 5y

  4. avatar Lewis says:

    anything that looks like an alien language is a win for me.
    i gave this 4Y just because i think the case/strap could do with snazzing up to compliment the simple display.
    great work!

    • avatar Wilhelm says:

      Thanks Lewis. Well I’m a fan of Dieter Ram’s work, and you can almost see it in all my designs for watch casings. The original idea, which I designed almost a year ago had even less detail, something I prefer. I also have 2 other ideas based on the same module and casing which I’m thinking of posting on the blog very soon.

  5. avatar xian says:

    I like your numbering system, Wilhelm. Maybe if I do more programming I’ll gain an affinity for binary. Until then I’ll wear your watch!

    • avatar xian says:

      For the sake of simplifying your design even further, I challenge you to make another version using a triangle window, a square window, a triangle window and another square window, arranged as you show the 4 square windows. The first triangle only needs 10, 20 and a dot for PM. The 2nd display can remain as you have as a square. In the 3rd display, now a triangle, you can eliminate the 40 (10, 20, 10+20, 10+30, 20+30), and the last window can remain as you show. What do you think?

      • avatar Wilhelm says:

        Great idea Xian, maybe you can also take the idea to the drawing board ;)

      • avatar xian says:

        I guess technically you don’t need the dot at all if you’re using military time. Maybe instead of a triangle you use a football shape, that would give you two corners for 10 and 20. Just don’t know how you’d use those 3 shapes harmoniously…

  6. avatar Pete says:

    Im not the biggest fan of binary to be honest as my poor little brain really struggles with it. That said this is so simple that I think I could get used to it. I think if all the markers were shown it would be even easier/quicker. Id be tempted to widen the gaps between the squares and add the extra markers. I quite like Xian’s comments regards the different shapes, it makes me wonder if you could use the playstation button icons, circle, square, triangle and cross. Might help the kids associate more? Anyway enough rambling from me, 5/Y best of luck sir! :D

  7. avatar Wilhelm says:

    Thanx Pete. I have, as mentioned above, 2 other designs with the same module, but with more markers on the face. I’m not keen in making the casing wider, so I have came up with a different faceplate. ;)

  8. avatar Makkovik says:

    I like the display. I would change the AM light for alarm or date & perhaps switch it with the PM position. I would remove the engraved digits. I would prefer if the right side was more symmetrical, either by having a bottom button as far out as the other one OR aligning it with the display.

    I like the false binary in +’s & that it’s combining it with a 12/24-5-9. I like the battery level indicator & the charger. It remind me of how to hook a hard drive in an enclosure.

    I would buy.