Cassette Futurism Alarm Clock: How It Was Made


My plan for the project evolved quickly as I faced hardware constraints. I valued working on the aesthetics of the project and developing a plan to make the device in my design over rushing to complete a project I wouldn’t be happy with. This is why, even though my timeline states I will source parts and manufacture them, I instead worked on the design and some of the coding of the project.

My Original Timeline

Deviating from my original timeline, my timeline only included the designing section. I originally tried to source parts but as I explain in my presentation, I had trouble getting the exact components I wanted. Being inflexible in my vision, I decided to instead put my time in to envisioning my perfect alarm clock and giving it the correct aesthetic and atmosphere. This is what my updated timeline looked like:

The Actual Timeline I Followed

How I Made It

I used Solidworks to create the model for my design and Photoview360 to create the renders. For the terminal, I used “cool-retro-term” in Ubuntu and scripted it using Python. To create this, I had to first find the scale of each individual component. I measured out the space in my room that I wanted the clock to sit in to find the general dimensions I wanted. I then found rough dimensions for the keypad, screen, and other components I was going to add. This let me scale everything to the size I wanted. I then modeled all of this in Solidworks as individual parts so they could be modified individually later. I then moved on to rendering, where I added textures and color, lighting, and the terminal image to create the final artifact.

Initial Sketch

Solidoworks Screencap

Final Render


This project turned out to be more ambitious than I expected due to my stubbornness to adhere the best I can to the aesthetic. If I had been able to properly source the screen and computer it would have turned out very differently. I am continuing this project in to the summer and plan to eventually finish it. Aesthetically, I did exactly what I wanted to do and completed the design portion. I am very happy with what I have designed and when I build the physical device I now have something to compare it to. I am happy to have designed something unique and have not seen any similar projects on the internet or anything even close to my design. Although I am disappointed I did not make the physical device in time, I completed the most difficult part (in my opinion) of coming up with a unique design and when all my parts are finally in my hands I can put together the final alarm clock.


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