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Andy Doro Word Clock Update

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Posted: August 10, 2021 | Categories: Internet of Things (IoT), Arduino

When I first discovered Andy Doro's Word Clock project, I immediately fell in love with it and knew I had to build one. I quickly downloaded everything I needed, then ordered the enclosure pieces from Ponoko.

Assembled Word CLock

The clock ran in our guest bathroom for more than a year before I noticed that the time was off. Looking into things, I realized that the temperature change in the bathroom (my son takes loooooong, hot showers) and the temperature sensitivity of the real-time clock (RTC) caused the time to shift.

I started looking for ways to improve this project so the time would stay accurate, so I decided to fork the project and rebuild it using a Wi-Fi enabled Adafruit Feather board and Network Time Protocol (NTP) to allow the project to periodically reset the local RTC to the correct time over the Internet. I also selected an RTC FeatherWing (add-on board for the Feather) that doesn't have the temperature sensitivity of the earlier project.

The Feather board has a different footprint than the Adafruit Trinket board originally used for the project, so I engaged Muzammil Patel on Fiverr to update the enclosure drawings to accommodate the microcontroller change. I also learned that even though Adafruit published a specification for the Feather platform, the Espressif-based Feather boards have a slightly different footprint which made accurately updating the enclosure a challenge.

I completed the updated project assembly last night and published the forked repository this morning on GitHub.

With that work done, I've started working on a wall mounted version of the clock. I have the hardware and software all working, now I have to just start assembling the clock. I'll publish the results as soon as I'm done.

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Header image: Photo by Robin Glauser on Unsplash.