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Mirror Clock

A concept bathroom mirror designed to show time to the user in an unobtrusive way  via indirect lighting, programmed fading and motion detection

 

THE Brief

For this project we were approached by a designer to help her construct a working prototype of a design concept she had submitted for the IKEA Singapore's Young Designer Award 2015.

The concept was for a bathroom mirror that told time in an unobtrusive way through slowly brightening lights around the edge. The mirror would first detect a person walking to it and then trigger the lighting. The lighting had to be gentle enough not to startle or daze someone who had just gotten out of bed.


Building from scratch

Firstly as such with all our builds, we started with CAD model to plan out this build to ensure all components could fit into the tight thickness constraints that were given.

One of the most significant challenges of this build was the size of the build as it was about 85cm in diameter.

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Keeping thing light

To keep the mirror light, so as to make it viable to wall mount, lighter materials like Styrofoam were used internally to act as guides instead of the traditional plastics or wood.


 Concept render of Mirror Clock, displaying 12:20. Large white bar represents hour, smaller orange bar representing minutes

Concept render of Mirror Clock, displaying 12:20. Large white bar represents hour, smaller orange bar representing minutes

Electronic Lighting

For this build, programmable lighting was an important requirement.

 

Firstly, certain LEDs would need to be turned on and off incrementally to display the time and they were supposed to fade off if the mirror did not detect the presence of someone in front of it.

 

To avoid blinding the user, the programmable LED strips were angled sideways rather than forward with a diffusing layer of plastic added to further soften the luminescence.

The goal was for the light and therefore time, to be displayed on the wall the mirror was mounted on rather than the displaying it on the mirror itself.

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Testing and Implementation

As the mirror was going to be on display for the public, it was important that it did not fail or malfunction at any point during it's deployment period. We tested every aspect of it rigorously to ensure this wouldn't happen, from conducting power tests to including new code to allow it to self recover in certain circumstances. Among the changes made was the inclusion of power jack, so the mirror could be powered via socket if the mirror gave any issues.

The mirror performed flawlessly during it's 3 day deployment and our client came in as the 1st runner up.


Contact Us

As always we accept comissions for any form of prototyping job such as proof of concept prototypes, fabrication jobs, functional protoyping for production, etc. Please feel free to contact us if you'd like to have something built or have any queries about how we can help you with your idea