All current alarm clocks suck. Go look at Amazon and see what I mean. The best appear to be the Sony designs, which look unchanged from mid-90s. Piles of buttons, no auto-setting of time, no modern technology. If you want something built this decade, the best bet is the iHome crap. I’m sure you’ve seen these: the look like they’re designed by a blind man, they only support iPhones and iPods, and still aren’t all that high-tech.
Given the sorry state of alarm clocks, I’ve decided that if I want a good one, I’ll have to build my own. Thankfully, the great wide world of open-source hardware makes that possible.
Here’s what my clock is going to have at a minimum:
- Dimmable RGB display for menu and time.
- Display dims according to ambient light.
- Menu interface controlled by iDrive-like controller.
- USB-host for iPhone and Android for charging and music playback.
- Multiple alarms: 1 day / 5 + 2 day / 7 day.
- Wakeup light.
- Auto DST based on zone info database.
- Simple on-board website as alternative config.
- REST interface for integration.
- Time set automatically via NTP, WWVB or GPS.
- Arduino compatible.
Now I just need to learn to solder, and be an EE, and re-learn C, and learn to be a ME.
Should be simple.