Methods for Time Representations through Pulsed Vibrations
Original Publication Date: 2002-Nov-20
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-21
There are times when you cannot look at a clock. Perhaps you are in a meeting or engaged in conversation… Perhaps you are a soldier or peace officer in a situation requiring silence… Perhaps you are blind… Mobile phones and pagers commonly use vibrations to signal calls or alarms. The same technique can be used to convey time if encoded. Described are several methods for signaling time on personal devices. This may occur either on demand or automatically at defined intervals. The first method vibrates a number of pulses corresponding to the current hour and minute, much like the town clock tower. The advantages are that counting can be simple and require little mental processing by the user. The disadvantages, however, are that counting can become cumbersome and impractical, particularly if the user wishes to know the current minute. You may alternatively encode the current time exactly as the numerals are represented in Morse Code. The advantage is the Morse Code is a relatively well known standard and can precisely convey the time. However, while many people know what Morse Code is, most do not know the code. Time can be compressed and encoded in a binary manner. Two different pulses are used, a long pulse '—' representing a binary '1', and a short pulse representing a binary '0'. To encode twenty-four hours, five pulses (bits) are needed. To encode sixty minutes, six pulses (bits) are needed.