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New TokyoFlash watch concept calls time on Rorschach test


March 14, 2013

The Rorschach test watch as seen in black, with the time easy to figure out once you know the methodology

The Rorschach test watch as seen in black, with the time easy to figure out once you know the methodology

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Part of the appeal of owning a watch by design studio TokyoFlash is being in on the secret of how to actually tell the time on one of its pieces. Some of the methods are particularly cryptic, especially when looking at the user-submitted concept designs. The Rorschach test watch is no exception, with the numbers clearly visible but almost indiscernible unless you know both what you're looking for and where you should be looking.

The Rorschach test, otherwise known as the inkblot test, is a technique used by psychologists to determine emotional well-being and underlying personality traits. The patient is shown a symmetrical inkblot shape and asked to interpret it in whichever way they see fit. With this as its inspiration, the functional-yet-funky timepiece could cause significant frustration and potentially lead to those not in on the secret seeking psychological help.

This concept watch was submitted by "Sam from Germany," who has clearly put a lot of thought into the timepiece. The result is a watch whose face is very reminiscent of the types of shapes thrown up during a Rorschach test. The starting point of the design process was showing the numbers clearly, then they were mirrored, before finally being melded together. This means each minute of the day is a brand new inkblot-style splodge on the e-paper display.

It's actually surprisingly easy to work out the time using the Rorschach test watch – once you know how. The hour is visible in the top-right of the display, with the minutes visible in the bottom-left. Considerable thought has even gone into the design of the strap, which is leather with a metal clasp in order to evoke the restraints that are sometimes applied to people in states of "high emotion." The whole watch is presented in black and white materials to ensure a simple but effective duality.

This is the sort of watch that would attract attention and be a magnificent talking point among friends. The Rorschach test e-paper watch is garnering extremely high ratings, with an average of 4.6 out of 5 at the time of writing, so we may see it make it onto TokyoFlash's production roster before too long.

Source: TokyoFlash

About the Author
Dave Parrack Dave is a technology journalist with a ravenous appetite for gadgets, gizmos, and gubbins. He's based in the U.K., and from his center of operations writes about all facets of modern and future technology. He has learned more in his five years writing for the Web than he did in 11 years at school, and with none of the boring subjects thrown in to the mix. All articles by Dave Parrack

A couple of hundred for a gimmick isn't bad, but what I can't understand is paying > $1000 for a Quartz watch. The accuracy of a Timex at 10 times the price?

Tom Sobieski

"A Puzzle A Day" , just to figure out what time it is. Keeps your brain working, even if you are 10 minutes late just because you were trying to read your watch. Doh!


I think its interesting, i can see some people buying this, who like abit of a puzzle every now and then having to work out what the time is based how it teaches you to work it out. Some people may find that process enjoyable, maby not so much if your rushing to a meeting and you need to know what time it is.

I guess you'll just pull out your phone at that point.

Some people may find the style/look of it matching their own kinda style and what they wear.

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