Union watch skips digits to save time.

Design submitted by Sam from Germany.

Sam says: My idea for UNION was to unify all digits of the time display, that are the same, to save numbers and to create an interesting look. For example a 22 would become a big 2. This is where the fun started.

The first big rule here is: read the display like as if it’s a text passage – left to right, top to bottom. It’s not a big deal but has to be kept in mind.

The basis for UNION’s display is the classical digital time display.
a) same digits have been unified into bigger ones while the other digits were rearranged properly,
b) leading zeros have been erased to create a more compact display and
c) tail double-zeros have been erased too, because they are also unnecessary.

Whenever two digits are the same, they result in a single digit with double the dimensions. Three identical digits result in a single digit with triple the dimensions and according to the rule, four identical digits result in a single digit with quadruple the dimensions of a normal number. Same digits aren’t always direct neighbours in the classical display layout but they are now fused into one place. This requires the relocation of the other digits to maintain a readable display.
There are several different display layouts possible – from one number up to four, from a single line that has to be read, up to four lines – each as high as the smallest type of numbers.

To ease up reading, these maximum four lines can be separated by clear gaps or more subtle dotted seams. Once the different sized digits can be distinguished, one can go back to the pure display mode.

I like the different number layouts. Some look pretty scientific and remind of chemistry or mathematical numbers. Sometimes they look like eyesight test images. Of course there are classical layouts too, when no numbers are the same.

That’s it for the display. For the watch I chose a simple geometry and the mirror version of an LCD display, because both together look very stylish. Of course there are different ways possible to present this unusual display in a neutral, fashionable way.

UNION is definitely a watch for geeks. But it doesn’t require much concentration, once the rules are understood. It looks interesting but not intrusive. It just uses numbers in a new way.

29 thoughts on “Union watch skips digits to save time.

  1. Sam, I love this watch. It’s the sort of nutty twisted logic I love. I’ve noticed that many of your designs have a focus on doing something with the digits themselves…representing the digits in an interesting manner. My new ideas don’t really walk down that path!

    Cheers and 5*!!


    • It’s just fun to find a way to tweak the digits. It’s also a nice way to create some confusion but staying relatively easy, once you know the tweaking rule. No counting, no calculating. It’s not the golden rule to do it, but I like it and mostly the people here like it too. DZ, thanks alot for the comment and the vote!


    • Hehe, yeah i’ve heard it before. I looked for a simple and stylish watch for the square numbers and this is what popped up in my head 🙂 Thank you Leo for the support!


    • Yeah diversion though-out the day! Each time you look at it, one of 22 layouts awaits you. Some come often, some are rare – more diversion hehe. Thanks Pete, for coming by and leaving some fluff 😉


  2. very twisted, indeed. looks cool, but it’s tricky to read, so it’s not one of my favorites of yours. although that’s not saying much because you have so many that are super awesome. this one is still very good. 5*


    • Hehe nice 🙂 Yeah, it’s another approach this time. And it’s just normal to not please with everything. I think it’s not that tricky, but that’s my special designer pesrpective 😉 I even found mistakes in the youtube video waaaaa xD Thanks for your words and for seeing the potential!


  3. Hey Sam,
    Woah! It’s a very nice model, the dotted display is… crisp!

    Btw, congrats for the OnLine ^_~ it is the 1st for you? I can’t wait for the Tikr or the IIE (for the Camalien I need to be dreaming ^_^)



    • The じゃね made me giggle 😉

      Thank you for the congrats! Yes it’s my first one and it feels so good!

      It’s cool you like this one, Daz. Is it good for you to read?


  4. Wow, Sam. That’s a really cool idea on how to display the time. I really like it a lot. It would probably take some getting use to reading it but once that’s down it would be so cool. 5/Y


    • Hehe, first they get a bit poorer (research, prototypes, manufacturing) and then hopefully a bit richer again 😉 Thank you Trayo for coming by and leaving some love.


  5. Sorry, but that’s a big NO. I don’t like the always changing size and location of the numbers. ( on the other hand, I like the overall look of the case )


    • Yep, totally comprehensible Makk (I’m always thinking of macaroni…). That the watch’s special and it if doesnt appeal, it shall be that way 🙂 Maybe lazy Sam re-uses the case for another design in the future 😉


  6. I see, this was was a little controverial. But just a little 😉 The normal numbers didn’t push anyone from the stool (we say so in Germany) but the interesting arrangement did it more on the other hand.

    Thank you everybody for sharing your thoughts and for the support!

    Stay creative, stay critical, stay tuned

    Sam from Germany


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