Alarm clock aesthetics
12 February 2009 4 Comments
I never thought it would be so difficult to find a well-designed — functionally and aesthetically — alarm clock. The two in our home now are both quite old, and some of their more basic functions recently ceased to operate. Thus we’ve been thinking about purchasing a new model for some months now.
I checked Walmart to no avail before heading over to Amazon.com. They have a large variety of items with competitive prices and a large number of user reviews. I was stunned at the hideous objects that resulted from my search. Apparently alarm clocks haven’t been redesigned in thirty years.
Of course, there are a few space-age exceptions, as well as your more expensive iPod ready fair with decent minimalist aspirations, in line with Apple products. However, I’m not so much into the coldness of the space-age aesthetic, and both of these options cost more than I wanted to pay for a simple alarm clock.
We ended up with the little clock above. It possesses all of the functionality we wanted, which was basically two alarms, a radio and the ability to set times both forward and backward. But you can’t read the time from halfway across the room. The time is backlit, and neither my wife or I can make out the digits from the bed to the dresser. Further, it’s quite bright and potentially interferes with sleep.
Oh, and the wife doesn’t like the looks of it either. I still contend it’s the best from among the options I found, but she’s correct when observing that the design is more or less blah, and that the white color pops whereas black would recede.
This is problematic. The little thing just won’t work for us, but I dread starting the seemingly futile search over again. I don’t need gimmicks, which there are an abundance of. I just want something that looks good and functions.
Perhaps we need to bring back certain principles espoused by the Bauhaus, where aesthetics were at least some part of industrial design.