iClock

2

Comments

  • Reply 21 of 44
    [quote]Originally posted by jpp1cd:

    <strong>

    I'd have to say 'great minds think alike.' I came up with my idea in a very similar way. I woke up and realized that my class had been cancelled and was pissed thinking my alarm clock should be able to talk to my computer and figure this stuff out. Stupid school. Always making me come up with incredibly expensive ideas. </strong><hr></blockquote>



    Nah! I've been peeking at your homework



    There are other advantages to having an iClock. Firstly the day and date becomes relevant to the iClock. I always get up later on the weekend, it would be nice for my clock to 'know' its the weekend, is it a public holiday? (iClock checks iCal) yes!, so by default it assumes I don't want to get up till 9, or at all, whatever I choose.



    How's the weather or traffic? the iClock might check to see if its raining (traffic is always worse in the rain) and get me up 10 minutes earlier.



    You can work out alarms weeks in advance if you want to based on your shedule in iCal, you have a test you have to get up for? iClock remembered where you forgot.



    It can display countdown information based on iCal information also. How many days left till the next Macworld? An event or events can be set to display a countdown as they approach.



    so when you glance up at your clock instead of just the time you see:



    9:00am

    Friday the Fourth of December



    You have 2 emails!

    Subject: Don't bother coming today!

    Subject: Don't forget to pick up my dry cleaning!



    27 Days till Macworld San Francisco



    Although obviously laid out differently.
  • Reply 22 of 44
    Oh and for all you Uber Geeks, it could display your 'uptime'
  • Reply 23 of 44
    xionjaxionja Posts: 504member
    Okay, I see good ideas here, but its a little far off. Apple Makes Computers. Sony, makes computers, cameras, and all sorts of stuff. i would want an iClock program on my computer that displays the time, and things in iCal. I want the ability to use my computer to set an alarm, that can go off in the morning. It would be cool to have an apple brand clock, but i would buy it, it would just be to expensive, and only because its apple branded. okay maybe i would save up to buy it because its apple branded, but thats because i'm a nerd.



    Apple Press realease(fake):

    We have sold 1657 iClocks, which is aproxamatily the number of active Appleinsider members. We see no relation betwean these numbers, it is pure coicidence.
  • Reply 24 of 44
    [quote]Originally posted by xionja:

    <strong>Okay, I see good ideas here, but its a little far off. Apple Makes Computers. Sony, makes computers, cameras, and all sorts of stuff. i would want an iClock program on my computer that displays the time, and things in iCal. I want the ability to use my computer to set an alarm, that can go off in the morning. It would be cool to have an apple brand clock, but i would buy it, it would just be to expensive, and only because its apple branded. okay maybe i would save up to buy it because its apple branded, but thats because i'm a nerd.



    Apple Press realease(fake):

    We have sold 1657 iClocks, which is aproxamatily the number of active Appleinsider members. We see no relation betwean these numbers, it is pure coicidence.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    As I said before, I wouldn't trust my computer to do anything like waking me up, I know I will always have an alarm clock.



    For one thing, there is the convenience factor, my alarm clock is at arms length, I can choose to switch it off and go back to sleep, I can choose to snooze and wake up 10 minutes later. It instantly tells me the time because its a clock even with bleary light sensitive morning eyes.



    Aha! you say, but if you don't trust a computer to wake you then what is the point of this?



    Well the point is that firstly, its an alarm clock, if the Mac hasn't done the things it was supposed to do or it has crashed then the iClock just reverts back to its defaults and still wakes me up, just not 'intelligently'.



    I don't feel this is a geek device, I think its a lifestyle device.



    Yes it would be expensive, but so are Sony Dream Machines and this would be sooo much more useful. Sony have about 20 models of Dream Machine available so they must think alarm clocks are in demand.



    In terms of technology it seems quite simple to me, you have a backlit LCD display, Bluetooth, Solid state memory (which must be pretty cheap by now), and a processor similar to the one in the iPod to sort out what to do. stick all that in a nice case with a Harmon Kaardon speaker and you have your iClock.



    The majority of the functions are controlled from the mac via iClock software. Have you seen how many buttons Dream Machines can be riddled with? Very confusing!



    A lot of people seem to have a hard time thinking of Apple as anything more than a computer company, as the iPod shows they are also a consumer electronics company. In fact they made stuff like cameras and printers before, the only difference being that in those days they were trying to make products where other companies were already being innovative.



    Go to your local store and check out the clock radios (wear tackyness reducing shades though) and tell me you can't see Apple fitting a product in there that would make Sony look twice at their line up.



    Check <a href="http://www.bose.com/home_audio/wave_systems/"; target="_blank">these</a> out if you doubt that high quality alarm clock systems can't sell.



    [ 10-09-2002: Message edited by: fridgemagnet ]</p>
  • Reply 25 of 44
    vr6vr6 Posts: 77member
    Why this is a great idea (some of my opinions and a summary of what others have said here):

    1) after a blackout, when the power comes back on, the clock will reset to the correct time -eliminating the single most annoying feature of alarm clocks. <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" />

    2) wakes you up by saying: "good morning, it's 6 am on Tuesday October 8th and you have a calendar event at 8 am. Today's high will be 72 degrees with scattered clouds. I will now play a random music selection from your itunes wake up playlist." music begins

    3) it will look really good. <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" />



    Actually, I think this would be a cooler device if it could turn on your TV and transmit this information through that.
  • Reply 26 of 44
    [quote] 1) after a blackout, when the power comes back on, the clock will reset to the correct time -eliminating the single most annoying feature of alarm clocks. <hr></blockquote>



    Yeah, I hadn't thought of that, nice one!
  • Reply 27 of 44
    overhopeoverhope Posts: 1,123member
    You know what I'd go for: iWatch.



    Apple-designed watch, syncable with iCal and Address Book via USB, and it picks up alarms from your calendars, complete with what you're supposed to be doing. Might be a tad chunky, but it wouldn't need much memory in it...
  • Reply 28 of 44
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    you know, where were all of you people when i posted this EXACT SAME IDEA a couple of months ago?!?!? pity appleinsider had to nuke a whackload of back pages (er, sorry, "prune the tree"), or else i'd just link to that old thread.



    not that i'm bitter.



    anyway, damn good idea. anyone want to pull up statistics on how many hours/days/years are lost every day across north america JUST BECAUSE every person's sense of time is slightly off from everyone else's? i would love to see a statistic like that. i bet it is enormous. get everyone using bluetooth clocks that communicate with each other, and computers within range to keep them ALL in sync, and you have a hell of a lot of people who are suddenly "on-time."
  • Reply 29 of 44
    paulpaul Posts: 5,278member
    [quote]Originally posted by rok:

    <strong>you know, where were all of you people when i posted this EXACT SAME IDEA a couple of months ago?!?!? pity appleinsider had to nuke a whackload of back pages (er, sorry, "prune the tree"), or else i'd just link to that old thread.



    not that i'm bitter.



    anyway, damn good idea. anyone want to pull up statistics on how many hours/days/years are lost every day across north america JUST BECAUSE every person's sense of time is slightly off from everyone else's? i would love to see a statistic like that. i bet it is enormous. get everyone using bluetooth clocks that communicate with each other, and computers within range to keep them ALL in sync, and you have a hell of a lot of people who are suddenly "on-time." </strong><hr></blockquote>



    its because then it was the beginning of the summer and it wasn't a big deal if you overslept. Now that school started and we are all missing our first classes in the morning because we oversleep, the idea makes more sense
  • Reply 30 of 44
    neutrino23neutrino23 Posts: 1,558member
    This could be cool. No doubt there are some really cheap alarm clocks around. However, there are also a bunch of high end designer clocks. I once received as a gift a Seiko clock that would play all sorts of nature sounds, surf, white noise etc. to either lull you to sleep or to wake you up. If you use blue tooth for communication, a very simple OS and CPU, and maybe only sound out for data out apart from the time. This would keep the cost down. Perhaps they could sell it for less than $200, including the lava lamp.
  • Reply 31 of 44
    And wouldent it be great if it worked with apple's new Rendezvous.



    Three simple steps to get the iClock to work. Step one plug it in to the power outlet. There's only one step, there's only one step (imagine with the voice of Jeff Goldblum.)



    But seriously it would go over to your mac over bluetooth, get the time, iCal infromation and iTunes tracks without you having to do anything. I think it would be a great first product for Apple to make using their Rendezvous software.



    The only thing is that i think blut tooth is pretty slow so it might not be able to stream music, unless it buffers a lot before hand. Then maybe they would actually put bluetooth in their computers.



    [ 10-09-2002: Message edited by: iplead5th ]</p>
  • Reply 32 of 44
    woozlewoozle Posts: 64member
    What you are really describing is not a clock at all, its a remote display for your Mac.



    It would need a cpu, some ram, and, obviously, a screen.

    One or two speakers, and wifi ( bluetooth doesnt have good enough range ).



    Hmmm, if you took an iPod, changed its packaging, give it a bigger screen ( resolution could stay the same ), replaced the pcmcia hard drive with an airport card, and dropped th battery you've got exactly what you are asking for.



    Not only could Apple do it, they could do it with existing parts, and in a very short time.



    Its so close to an iPod its frightening.
  • Reply 33 of 44
    HP's had one of these on the boards for 4-5 years now... The concept is solid. I was really interested in it when I lived in a city + had to deal w/ traffic - the clock would access local traffic datasources to determine if there were delays, so it could wake you up 30 minutes early, or let you sleep in an extra 10 if everyhting was clear.



    As far as I know they've yet to really get it out of Proof of Concept stage, but as I said, the concept is strong.
  • Reply 34 of 44
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    [quote]Originally posted by woozle:

    <strong>What you are really describing is not a clock at all, its a remote display for your Mac.



    It would need a cpu, some ram, and, obviously, a screen.

    One or two speakers, and wifi ( bluetooth doesnt have good enough range ).



    Hmmm, if you took an iPod, changed its packaging, give it a bigger screen ( resolution could stay the same ), replaced the pcmcia hard drive with an airport card, and dropped th battery you've got exactly what you are asking for.



    Not only could Apple do it, they could do it with existing parts, and in a very short time.



    Its so close to an iPod its frightening.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    i think you've got a point, BUT one of the points i think we're stressing with bluetooth, and its chief selling point (besides size) is how cheap it is. just ONE of these clocks won't change your "lifestyle" very much, if you can only buy one for next to your bed. but if they are cheap enough to buy, say, five of them, put them around your house, and have them set up their own auto-network to find out the correct time and sync as necessary...boom! you have a distinct lifestyle change (not to mention a small apple advertisement in every friggin' room).



    plus, i didn't notice if anyone else said this, but the reason i thought about this before was the royal pain in the ass it was to go around my house every time daylight savings kicked in (or out) and i had to find every stupid clock and change the time by an hour. if they all talked to each other, my mac, and maybe my wristwatch, then i would ALWAYS know if i am missing the bus for work in the morning.



    plus, the main reason this idea SCREAMS apple to me is the same thing with usb back in '98... no one, and i mean NO ONE could get the public (and manufacturers) to adopt usb. so apple rammed it down our collective throats with it in every computer. ask ericsson (sp?): bluetooth needs the EXACT SAME kick in the rear. someone to force it onto the technology sector, and show why its good. don't make it an option... make it standard.



    [ 10-09-2002: Message edited by: rok ]</p>
  • Reply 35 of 44
    woozlewoozle Posts: 64member
    I agree with the sentiment, but bluetooth doesnt have the range to be a safe consumer product.



    &lt;Story&gt;

    I got to the Apple store and pick up one of these sweet clocks, its $200, a bit steep, but pretty cool, and with kick ass aesthetics.

    I get home and plug it in. The instructions tell me it should automatically find my Mac, and start displaying the time.

    It sits there for 10 mins with its little searching animation playing, but nothing happens.

    I go to my mac and run system update to no avail.

    I install the software that lets me customise my clock, which goes fine, but it then also sits there and tells me there is no clock to edit.

    I pack it up and take it back to the Apple store.

    &lt;/story&gt;



    Why didnt it work, crappy bluetooth only has a short range.

    I dont think that it shouldnt have bluetooth, I do think that it should have both bluetooth and wifi.



    A lot of mac users already have airport cards, you dont want to make them upgrade just to use the clock.



    I totally expect an upgrade to airport to include bluetooth as standard, so the airport card in the clock can do both ( when that happens ).



    Having bluetooth could be handy, if my cell phone rings while im in bed then the clock can show who is calling, and act a bluetooth headset, letting me answer, and take the call.



    Im actually really attached to this idea already, it could do so much, in such a nice way.



    Rendevous support would let it tap into iCal and iTunes.

    Bluetooth gives it the power to communicate with my cell phone.

    If Macs can do caller id yet, then it can do the same thing for my normal phone.

    If you had more than one you could use it page other iClocks in range.

    It sounds so cool that Im sure Id get one, not just for my bedside, but also for my desk.



    [ 10-09-2002: Message edited by: woozle ]</p>
  • Reply 36 of 44
    As I'm not that technical I hadn't actually looked at the range of Bluetooth but after a quick search I'm told it is around 100ft and even half of that is not too bad unless you're living in some kind of mansion.



    Another neat thing about Bluetooth devices is that they relay stuff to each other, you want 2 iClocks? as long as one of them is in range of your mac the second one just needs to be in range of the first. So you can make a chain if you like. In fact any Bluetooth device can be part of that chain as far as I know, so if you want your printer to be very far away from your mac your iclock could relay the signal.



    Bluetooth uses 1 percent of the power of WiFi and is capable of dynamically switching frequencies if it encounters interference (digital cordless phones use the same frequency range as both WiFi and Bluetooth and have none to cause interference).



    You can use Bluetooth with Rendezvous right? I'm not sure about this.



    Anyway something that looks great next to your bed as it does on your desk is exactly the kind of design challenge I think Apple would set themselves and yes the resemblance to an iPod is uncanny, remove the drive, change the screen, add a speaker and Bluetooth and voila!



    It's almost like they made it already.
  • Reply 37 of 44
    I did a quick search for bluetooth range but couldnt find anything solid about the current standard.

    Certainly from memory I gathered that it was 5 - 10m, my bedside table is 15 metres from my computer, and I only live in a 2 bedroom unit.

    However, there amplifiers that have recently been released that push the range up to 100m, which is plenty far enough.

    The choice of wifi for the primary transport ( although bluetooth could be a fall back ) should be made simply because lots of macs already have wifi, just about none have bluetooth. By choosing bluetooth you shut out existing systems.



    I dont think it needs to be argued, it should have both.

    Power isnt an issue, it will be wall plugged with battery backup. Bluetooth is only about 1mbit, so you're using a lot of that up if you want to stream music from itunes ( all my music is 192 kbit ).



    But still, I really do love this idea, who else is working on a mockup?
  • Reply 38 of 44
    I have a cheap alarm clock that has a jog dial-style controller- I can't tell you how nice it is, to both set the time and to change the radio station. all in one dial.



    I think this could be a very cool thing, though how would it comunicate with the machine when the machine goes to sleep? What would happen if you had a laptop, and had to leave it at work one day? You would loose all the inteligent features.



    As for setting the time automatically, at least in the US, that is already possible, many of the more expensive watches do this already, using the CoastGuard (I believe) time radio signal.



    also, be carefull this doesn't turn into an internet appliance- no writing or editing emails on the thing, no browsing the web. Keep It Simple.



    Weather and traffic stuff would be cool.

    neat idea
  • Reply 39 of 44
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    Yep,



    I too really like this idea... I've been keeping the wraps on an idea I've had for quite some time but since like most of my ideas... I'll never get around to it.



    Imagine a 'butler' that would run on your desktop computer who's only job it is to wait around and fetch things from different places at specific times. The 'butler' would be plug-in oriented so different butlers could be written for different things.



    What would it grab?



    - Birthdays for the next 7 days (from Address Book)

    - Day Events for the next 7 days (from iCal)

    - Timed events for 'today' (from iCal)

    - Weather for 'today' (from US weather source)

    - Stock quotes for specific indexes and stocks etc

    - Game scores for sepecific teams/events you follow

    - Todays headlines from CNN or USA Today (etc)



    Now my idea was to format all of the above data into a 'personal news report' type format that used as much natural english (insert lang of your choice) as possible.



    Kinda like:



    --------------------------------

    Todays top stories are (?top5headlines?)



    Today the markets opened with the (?index?) moving (?direction?) (?number of points?) points and the (?nextindex?) moving (?direction?) (?number of points?) points. (?company?) was (?direction?) (?number of points?) and (?othercompany?) was unchanged.



    It's currently (?currenttemp?) with (?condition?) skys in the (?name of area?) area. The rest of the day will be (?condition?) with a high of (?hightemp?) and an low of (?lowtemp?).



    In sports the (?teamname?) (?won/lost?) their game with (?othername?) by a score of (?finalscore?) to (?otherscore?).



    This week (?birthdayperson?) will be celebrating their birthday on the (?date?).



    [if day events exist say what they are]



    You have the following meetings lined up for today.[list them]

    --------------------------------



    Like I said I had planned for this to be an 'email type of thing' but using this with an iClock would be too cool.



    I'm all for it!



    Dave



    [ 10-10-2002: Message edited by: DaveGee ]</p>
  • Reply 40 of 44
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    [quote]Originally posted by fridgemagnet:

    <strong>As I'm not that technical I hadn't actually looked at the range of Bluetooth but after a quick search I'm told it is around 100ft and even half of that is not too bad unless you're living in some kind of mansion.



    Another neat thing about Bluetooth devices is that they relay stuff to each other, you want 2 iClocks? as long as one of them is in range of your mac the second one just needs to be in range of the first. So you can make a chain if you like. In fact any Bluetooth device can be part of that chain as far as I know, so if you want your printer to be very far away from your mac your iclock could relay the signal.



    Bluetooth uses 1 percent of the power of WiFi and is capable of dynamically switching frequencies if it encounters interference (digital cordless phones use the same frequency range as both WiFi and Bluetooth and have none to cause interference).



    You can use Bluetooth with Rendezvous right? I'm not sure about this.



    Anyway something that looks great next to your bed as it does on your desk is exactly the kind of design challenge I think Apple would set themselves and yes the resemblance to an iPod is uncanny, remove the drive, change the screen, add a speaker and Bluetooth and voila!



    It's almost like they made it already.</strong><hr></blockquote>



    exactly. that's why it HAS to be cheap... to allow someone to purchase multiple clocks to set up the network.



    AND, the added bonus is that if you have enough of them, you have transparently added a bluetooth network to your home. meaning you don't even need to be near the computer for isync to work with your cell phone or pda... just the closest bluetooth-enabled clock (or toaster, or refridgerator... you get the idea).



    plus, then just like many cell-phones, you could download cheesy custom alarms for your clocks. end of workday, and the flintstones theme plays. in-laws in town = death dirge.



    honestly, i told a friend of mine that this has the ability to become the "post-it" note of techie toys. meaning, take a stupid-simple concept that you take for granted (like leaving notes for folks, or, in this case, keeping all your time in sync), make a cheap quicky solution that you can flood the market with, and you'll make enough cash to windsurf on in your spare time.



    [ 10-10-2002: Message edited by: rok ]</p>
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