Time has always been an obsession for most. While for some there’s not enough, others don’t know what to do with it. And depending on the circumstances, it might go by really fast or it might be boringly slow. For some people, every second is gold. But for others, the sooner they fall behind, the more of it they’ll have to catch up later.
But yes, we all need to measure it!
There is an infinite variety of ways to do so, from binary code to grains of sand to numbers and letters. But Berlin’s Mengenlehreuhr claims to be the first timepiece that measures our slow journey through this life in nothing more than colours, light and set theory.
Designed like a retro-futuristic piece, the clock was first installed in Berlin in 1975 by inventor Dieter Binninger. It consists of 24 lights that blink on and off in patterns that measure a 24-hour cycle for those who can decipher the code. Some of the lights represent five-hour units, while others represent one-hour units, and still others denote minutes and seconds. If added correctly, one can decipher the time.
I’m afraid I haven’t been able to figure out how to read it, but I enjoy the courtship dance of the different shades of orange and yellow.