Slim And Classy Word Clock Shows The Weather Too

Word clocks are a neat twist on traditional timepiece user interfaces. Spelling out the time with words and phrases rather than numerals fancies up a clock nicely. And if you add the current weather and forecast to the display, you get this attractive and handy word-based time and weather display.

For this clock, one of the many custom builds on [GMG]’s site that betray a certain passion for unusual timepieces, an 8×32 array of Neopixels lives behind a laser-cut sheet of steam-bent birch plywood. Each pixel is masked by either an alphanumeric character or an icon representing weather conditions. An ESP8266 fetches time and weather data and drives the display serially, controlling the color of each cell and building up the display. The video below shows the clock doing its thing.

Sure, we’ve featured plenty of word clocks before, even some with weather display, but we like the slim and understated design of this build. We’re particularly impressed by the lengths [GMG] took in packing as much capability into the 256-pixel display as possible, like the way “today” and “tomorrow” overlap. And if you’ve got an eye for detail, you might spot what gets displayed when it’s over 80° and 80% relative humidity.

16 thoughts on “Slim And Classy Word Clock Shows The Weather Too

  1. HDR. The new android phones have HDR photography built in. This is the only way I’ve got to visualize what the jumble of half lit letters and over exposed blobs mean. If the lighting in the display scene is not up to it (diffusion and such in display) and contrast ratio, it doesn’t work for me. And, I prefer text over glyphs.
    But when it comes to weather I use the National radar loop high res, rather than hear or read a description of wxy then z. It’s like watching a football game and all the traffic in half the state from many clicks away with one of the military gigapixel camera drones, vs. a text of the game play after it happens. I am waiting for the road scene dot org type of thing to happen, but it will be Big B and closed source.
    I would love to see a big display with the current loop for 500 miles or so upwind of the local spot. Wherever on Earth you are. For more graphic excitement go to and set stations on. As storms bear down on you, you can see the thunder on the screen and see rays from each reporting station that tracks each strike and from where then to upload to us. It’s like Missile Command but then you hear them go off for “real”!

  2. Should put a transparent/translucent backing or alter the fonts so that the holes in the middle of characters like “80” would still be attached in stead of a big hole. It is done for some of the characters, but probably fall off for others because the laser burns it off. So the attention to details isn’t there on this build.

    1. They were originally filled in after laser cutting, but detached during finishing due to the thin bridges in the stencil font. Just waiting to laser cut another mask, as mentioned in the description.

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