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Retro Clock

The objective of this project was to apply all the skills we had obtained over the course of the semester. The goal was to utilize our drawing skills and3D prototyping abilities to render a finished concept of our own design. Our design concepts were motivated after interviews were conducted with elderly participants and their needs were identified.

November 2003
Industrial Design Fundamentals
School of Design, Carnegie Mellon University

This clock concept was designed aesthetically to resemble the style of early era radios, but still accommodate newer technology. The large clock face was designed to serve the needs of the elderly by providing a large, visible display with high contrast. An analog time display was used because or research findings that showed that the elderly disliked digital displays. The front rim of the clock face rotates to set the alarm time, the rear rime (on the back of the clock) rotates to set the actual time. Other controls include a radio tuner, volume control, and snooze button.

I began with a series of sketches focusing on the analog dial concept preferred by my audience while incorporating a more traditional style. My research also revealed that the small buttons used for setting the time on modern digital clocks were too confusing and hard to control. Due to common dexterity problems, my design concepts incorporated a large dial that required minimal grip and contraction of the hand to control.

Following the sketching phase, I began to build mockups of various controls and clock concepts. The final design was made from foam core, paper, and cardboard tubing. Because I needed to make several models to test my ideas, I developed a template of the form of the clock base (all one piece folded into its current shape) for rapid reproduction.