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yertle38 t1_ixo4huf wrote

The signal strength in the upper right shows you have reception to the radio signal that broadcasts the current time.


graveybrains t1_ixoai2h wrote

If anyone wants to nerd out a bit, this is the radio station it’s listening to:


JerryBoBerry38 t1_ixoho21 wrote

And the station WWV (no B on the end) broadcasts the signal on several high frequency bandwidths. If you have a shortwave radio you can listen to those.

How I've set my watches since the late 80's.


loganwachter t1_ixou18h wrote

There’s also a number you can dial to get the time. I use it to make test calls to verify phones are working at work. (202)762-1401


ArseholeAlexa t1_ixowb07 wrote

That is so weird, I have that number saved in my phone, and I decided to call it tonight and the computer is not picking up and saying “on the beep, the time is————-“


loganwachter t1_ixowe3w wrote

I’ve noticed recently it’s been ringing for about 20 seconds and then answers.


ArseholeAlexa t1_ixown4a wrote

HUH. It just worked after you posted and I called it back.

“US Naval Observatory master clock, at the tone, Eastern Standard time, 22 hours 29 minutes 30 seconds”


loganwachter t1_ixowqt3 wrote

Just called from one of my phones. Rang forever. Called from the other and it answered immediately. Seems it has a mind of its own.


ArseholeAlexa t1_ixowz2m wrote

“22 hours 32 minutes exactly.”

Welp, it seems to be working just fine. It must have a small queue of phone calls coming in.


MDCRP t1_ixqu8de wrote

Or it got the reddit hug


mr_john_steed t1_ixpfmlk wrote

I tried it and just heard a voice whispering "SEVEN DAYS". Is that bad....?


jam3s2001 t1_ixqe9j3 wrote

You will find out in a week, I guess. Might be best to avoid any old wells in the meantime.


milesbeats t1_ixqip9k wrote

Is this popcorn you are speaking of ??

You can spell out P.O.P.C.O.R.N on any handset I remember regardless of area code and you get the time


ArseholeAlexa t1_ixqjnfv wrote

I’ve never heard of the popcorn thing before. I have no idea.


milesbeats t1_ixqk3o6 wrote

I'm not even fucking with you this was a huge deal .. it was hella fun... What time is it .. then we would sneak to a phone and call popcorn ... The current time is ... Lol memories


ArseholeAlexa t1_ixqm769 wrote

Well shoot, it was shut down in 2007. That’s sad as heck.


ipsumdeiamoamasamat t1_ixq35ev wrote

I didn’t know this existed. We used to have a local version of it, but the telephone company ended that years ago.


awarmguinness t1_ixroz7p wrote

There was a number like that growing up, I could dial WEATHER for the weather and 777-4647 for the time, it would say "Calling long distance? Make a list of what you want to talk about, you'll save more in less time. The time is..." Still remember that shit....


loganwachter t1_ixrphfv wrote

That would’ve been a locally controlled device in a phone central office near you. Ours was 774-9998 and the one at my grandparents house was 764-0105 I think. Both had different advertisement messages but the timekeepers voice was identical.


goetheschiller t1_ixs86r3 wrote

Interesting! I wonder if the “at the tone” takes into account the inherent delay in the signal.


XS4Me t1_ixpt17z wrote

> wrist watches

To be fair, wrist watches are now a days more jewelry than time keeping devices.


tatanka01 t1_ixpxh8o wrote

>To be fair, wrist watches are now a days more computer than time keeping devices.



Gernafax t1_ixoezlt wrote

My jam


Hank_Fuerta t1_ixp6jgd wrote

Lone Star?


Legato895 t1_ixpbdu5 wrote



TadeusTaD t1_ixpov5p wrote

Now that's a r/unexpectedSpaceballs worthy thread


politepauly t1_ixplbbw wrote

I LOVE THIS. Buyitforlife for sure. I get so pissed off at apple and ms and tesla etc.


JPAchilles t1_ixplra0 wrote

I think you meant to reply to another comment


skyecolin22 t1_ixpd51l wrote

This is the most detailed government webpage I've ever seen, and I appreciate that even as someone who doesn't understand radio signals all that well


EarlPeck t1_ixrru5d wrote

That’s NIST for you check out their e-commerce store.


Gabetanker t1_ixponfl wrote

If would ever shut down for a day, the country would probably collapse


Snoo75302 t1_ixpxuc3 wrote

I have a watch that connects to this. Casio wave ceptor.


BigEmu9286 t1_ixoq5pa wrote

How do you know


FilteringOutSubs t1_ixoxybb wrote

There aren't that many time signals in the US. Also, it's in the clock's instructions


[deleted] t1_ixp9cla wrote



noroadsleft t1_ixpdxyy wrote

Seems to be an earlier version of this clock:

The clock in the OP seems to be a Model 13131A2, which has its manual linked on the Manuals tab ("Legacy Product 13131A2").


FilteringOutSubs t1_ixqyvsq wrote

No where in the picture do I see that. I googled the clock brand and looked at the model pictures for a minute, then I looked at that model's information/instructions.

Also again, there are not that many time signals in the US; if there is a clock updating from a radio signal in the US, it's probably the WWV.

And to be thorough, I say US because the clock shows a continental US outline.


The_alchemist667 t1_ixp6x9f wrote

Man you know whats so cool is ive been learning to produce edm music and been learning a lot about how the synths work and it uses the same terminology like pulse width modulation and such but relating to soundwaves.

Kinda cool how sin wave terminology can apply to so many different things


PhilipMewnan t1_ixr06w6 wrote

I live pretty close to those, they’re really beautiful at night blinking red on the horizon


50MillionNostalgia t1_ixrf8ae wrote

This is such a mind trip. I watched a recommended YouTube video at like 2 am last night about NIST. It was the first time I’ve ever heard of it and had no idea it existed. Was interesting af and now I open reddit today and the first thread has this as the top comment. Insane….feels like The Truman Show


graveybrains t1_ixrhtlq wrote

And, in case I don't see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and good night!


BitsAndBobs304 t1_ixrjz2d wrote

there's a classic Terence Hill & Bud Spencer movie where the villain has a bomb that will... delete all numbers. like, the existence of numbers. to which they reply things like "it'll be impossible to figure out what's happening during a football game!" "it'll be impossible to order pizza delivery!" .

now I'm picturing a hacker deciding to destroy the world by... messing with the satellite radios that sync people's alarm clocks, on the day of the daylight savings change.


CzarDestructo t1_ixodpa5 wrote

And you can install an android app that emulates the signal with your phone speaker. Most modern phone CPUs have high enough quality sound that it can make the signal clean enough to update devices that otherwise can't receive the signal.


NamityName t1_ixp3pt1 wrote

So it uses the speaker to create sound waves that emulate electromagnetic waves..... I am a bit doubtful

Edit: i ran the app for an atomic watch that i cannot sync where I am, and it worked.


jonoff t1_ixpfx5n wrote

It's not the sound waves nor speaker that matters here, but what powers the diaphragm of that speaker. The speaker's very small electric coil puts out EM waves at a harmonic frequency the device picks up. Pretty neat trick.

Building just a wire loop greatly improves the signal without any audio.


ARoyaleWithCheese t1_ixplk4m wrote

This 100% reads like one of those "charge your phone in the microwave" pranks. Of course it's not, but it does come across just as ridiculous if you don't understand the science behind it. Suddenly it seems not that crazy people would fall for hoaxes like that.


Liquidretro t1_ixs94dg wrote

Thanks for the explanation, I have always wondered how this works exactly


tmart42 t1_ixpg8gm wrote

Wait until you hear…that modern speakers can transmit in more than just the mechanical wave spectrum…


average_AZN t1_ixp6dvx wrote

I'm an electrical engineer and i can't believe this works.. Wild


yertle38 t1_ixp4b1j wrote

Oh that’s neat. I wonder if you can sabotage public clocks with that 😀


8dogsinatrenchcoat t1_ixpv0jl wrote

Thank you!!

I have one of these clocks but it has lost the ability to receive a signal. One of those things where it's useless but you hate to throw it out in case there's a fix. And there is!


VapeMySemen OP t1_ixob0wl wrote

Ahhh interesting, learned something new today thank you


Bikouchu t1_ixoc4lc wrote

Meanwhile my Honda GPS navigation on my 08 si can't even get the time right.


yertle38 t1_ixp4dzt wrote

That’s odd since GPS relies on very accurate timing. But maybe it doesn’t know DST, I’d assume it only really needs a universal time that isn’t jittering.


Bikouchu t1_ixr3e9m wrote

It has its own y2k bug cause they cheaped out on software it happened this year. With 200x-2011 navigation. It would otherwise know dst and date, but know is stuck without dst or correct date. However they fixed it enough where is off only by the hour.


dcormier t1_ixo8zn8 wrote

And the back has a switch for the time zone.


LeamNoran t1_ixozhca wrote

And that signal itself has DST bits encoded so whenever DST moves around these can stay current. You can even get watches that can do WWVB. So cool!


3x35r22m4u t1_ixp4d4s wrote

How's the coverage of WWVB these days with so many switching power supplies? Do these clock work well say from Maine to Florida to Hawaii?

We've tuned the 60KHz signal here in Brazil at night, but we had to use an 300 meter antenna in a rural location (:


LeamNoran t1_ixtrbku wrote

I live near the antennas normally. I went to the southern east coast of America and my WWVB watch was able to sync from them daily without incident fwiw.


The_Colorman t1_ixoyqvy wrote

Was going to say it has to be hitting a radio or something.Daylight saving days changed something like 15 years ago.


1h8fulkat t1_ixqe0mf wrote

And yet my car designed in 2016 can't get it's shit together


BLomniscientreader t1_ixqy9we wrote

God this reminds me...

My father has a clock that he got from italy. I ve spent hours at some point researching why it was always one hour behind, even if you set it right. Well, it had a signal strength indicator which I finally found out it connected to the radio signal and always sync-ed with italian local time... just disabled it lol


haemaker t1_ixo56oc wrote

If that is a clock that syncs with NIST, daylight saving time is part of the signal. This is how it knows even though DST changed under Bush.


[deleted] t1_ixo73jx wrote

I had a clock that synced with NIST or some other org which was really freaking cool.... until the sync broke and was always 10 minutes off. Set it manually and about an hour or 2 later it was back to being 10 minutes off.

Was a bit sad when I got rid of it


haemaker t1_ixo9blp wrote

What a strange bug.


[deleted] t1_ixo9ta7 wrote

Yup. I'm guessing that there was a slight low/high voltage issue somewhere in there that was skewing it, but I wasn't going to tear it apart, figure out what component needed to be repaired/replaced, repair/replace said component, and hope that it fixed it. It would have taken hours and by that point my phone was a more reliable alarm so I got rid of it.


turbocomppro t1_ixpk0f7 wrote

If it’s like a decade old, possible it’s just a simple capacitor. They tend to bulge and/or leak when they go bad so easy to spot. They are cheap and pretty simple to replace with a cheap $10 soldering iron.

A lot of TVs have this problem as well. Pretty much the whole TV is still good. Just a $1 capacitor on the power supply board blew.


loganwachter t1_ixouaz8 wrote

My clock does this! It’s always 10min 22sec off.


yvonneb28 t1_ixp1zew wrote

Mine does this as well, is yours slow or fast? Mine is fast, which is at least better than being slow


loganwachter t1_ixp24pv wrote

It varies. DST it’s slow. When it’s not DST its fast. Always by the same amount of time.


yvonneb28 t1_ixp1urf wrote

Mine is off 10 minutes too! Out of curiosity, do you remember if yours was slow or fast? Mine was fast, I was early to so much shit before I figured it out


vff t1_ixqsfup wrote

Is it an analog or digital clock? For the analog ones, there is a synchronization procedure so it can “learn” the positions of the hands (it doesn’t know where they are; it learns them once then remembers how far it’s moved them). This needs to be repeated periodically, such as when changing batteries.


yvonneb28 t1_ixr7uda wrote

It’s digital, it’s only a few years old too, 5 at the most. It’s one of those ones with multiple functions, but everything else seems to work fine.


vff t1_ixsfcly wrote

How very odd! Perhaps at some point it traveled 10 minutes in a time machine, and now shows a permanent, residual temporal displacement. 😉


yvonneb28 t1_ixsmxlm wrote

Gosh darn it! Why didn’t I think of that? It’s so obvious now


[deleted] t1_ixq4eka wrote

I want to say fast, but might have been slow. It’s been a number of years.


RamenWrestler t1_ixovqit wrote

So why not set it 10min off to begin with to cancel it out


WhatAGoodDoggy t1_ixod2km wrote

Show your appreciation by giving it a clean.


VapeMySemen OP t1_ixoks9m wrote

My A/C brings in hella dust lmfao

I will give it another wipe down though


diab0lus t1_ixot3al wrote

Do you have allergies at home? I just bought a hepa air purifier because my old dusty house causes me all sorts of sinus issues.


TheoHW t1_ixo4vzw wrote

probably saved you a lot of daylight by now!


home_cheese t1_ixog7ca wrote

You should have asked for cocaine as well. Everybody knows businessmen love that stuff.


no-steppe t1_ixppqp8 wrote

"Mom, can we get cocaine?"

'No, we already have cocaine at home.'


ice1Hcode t1_ixotehv wrote

This mans username. My lord


RepublicanUntil2019 t1_ixo8f18 wrote

My water plant got a bunch of these when it open in 1995. They are still up and running.


whizzfiz t1_ixoef4u wrote

I have the same clock! It’s sick


OddishShape t1_ixozuk8 wrote

I’m not gonna say you were a cool kid, but it sounds like you were a bright one


NotYour_Ordinary_Guy t1_ixp0qq6 wrote

Completely agree! I have the same thing and I honestly can't even remember when I last changed the batteries.


noflooddamage t1_ixp0vgk wrote

Electronics from the 2000s were built like tanks. Every piece of 00’s tech I have still works flawlessly.


smitty3z t1_ixpcwpg wrote

Mine is older than me (39). Still works.


FrenchBread147 t1_ixrs6dl wrote

How do you sleep when it's 79F in your bedroom?


VapeMySemen OP t1_ixtn9d4 wrote

Yeah that can't be right haha, I keep it 72F in here. Might be getting the temp from the radio towers nearby?


virgindog t1_ixo73vu wrote

I have the version of this with the sensor you mount somewhere outside. It can then display both indoor and outdoor temperature.


kirayaba t1_ixoc0iv wrote

I have a small round digital clock I got for Christmas at age 10, still have it at 25 so far, never giving it up until it dies haha.


hey_now24 t1_ixohqmw wrote

2000s designs were pretty bad


blamemeIdidntdoit t1_ixoog04 wrote

What's the thing on the upper left under the PM?


MethMouthMagoo t1_ixp8syi wrote

The US. The shaded in part is the Pacific time zone.

Or, that's my best guess.


xrimane t1_ixpplyo wrote

That map is some /r/shittymapporn lol


blamemeIdidntdoit t1_ixqi0bu wrote

This must be right. I certainly didn't recognize that shape as the US. Thank you.


VapeMySemen OP t1_ixooyqr wrote

It shows a "P" when it's pm


SoFisticate t1_ixot9e1 wrote

No the P is pacific time. The america shows Pacific time zone


zkiller195 t1_ixpb4gb wrote

Why would it say PM at the top and then P below it? Pretty sure the P is for Pacific (the time zone that's shown on the map)


Ri99ed t1_ixopmj9 wrote

My guess is pacific time zone.


AutumnSpecialist t1_ixoontv wrote

I have this with my Sony Dream Machine. Has the old iPod docking station in it. It always runs 25 minutes fast, but it never fails me!!


GnowledgedGnome t1_ixopcr7 wrote

I wish my newer (maybe 10 years old) was this smart. Awhile back when the timing of the change was updated it kept on switching on the same old schedule


Western_Detective_84 t1_ixoqv0m wrote

Gave this an upvote for lasting longer than anyone would expect. That's a worthy goal.

Then almost took the upvote away when I saw the username. Dude! EWWWWW! Gross! (of course, that's probably his point.)


dubbed4lyfe t1_ixouavq wrote

shit man I got the same clock lmao


AIexanderClamBell t1_ixouy83 wrote

I have the Sony dream machine that is going strong


epicnonja t1_ixp1i0d wrote

I have one too! Thing is the perfect clock


Alley-Omalley t1_ixp2qq9 wrote

Had the same one in college. Don't know what happened to it


BSixe t1_ixp4gr0 wrote

Reality is cyclical, that’s why


Riskyrisk123 t1_ixp614a wrote

Let us know if it changes next year. The true test


LunDeus t1_ixp83wh wrote

How do you like that hover ball, same one as the YouTube ads?


jkels66 t1_ixpcucr wrote

next year if it doesn’t change during fall back i’ll be impressed


bpfoto t1_ixpcytr wrote

I have a clock radio from the 70s. It is ugly, but I think it may outlive me!


PiGuy9614 t1_ixpdt2a wrote

This is hilarious. I have the exact same alarm clock that my mother also got me when I was a child and it is still kicking it. Love that thing, it’s survived multiple moves and falls.


marvin_sirius t1_ixpnp0k wrote

Did you get a trenchcoat for you and your two brothers?


gonzot1978 t1_ixprxjt wrote

I have one of these, 6 years and only changed the battery’s twice


michixlol t1_ixptwy3 wrote

Seems to be pretty acu rite


abotching t1_ixq892w wrote

Wanted to be a man at 7, grew up to have a Reddit username - vapemysemen


iMakeBoomBoom t1_ixqf0mq wrote

I would expect that if it is showing the right time at all, then it would of course be showing the correct daylight savings time. It’s not like it’s gonna work for everything but daylight savings. Radio-signal clocks don’t work that way.


AAA515 t1_ixqi1yg wrote

I had that same clock, every day it would reset to the wrong time zone no matter how many times I set it.


jajajajaj t1_ixqoj4u wrote

It's funny what does and doesn't last. In 2022 "twenty years ago" isn't what it used to be, but it's also not what it used to be before that.

Lucky that the paint didn't oxidize or start some weird off gassing, the LCD didn't crack, or the wire to the power adapter didn't snap, but by 2002, we knew how to keep clocks synched. If you still use the same refrigerator over that same span of time, lucky you, but I bet the one that's been abandoned at the old house where some of my family used to live, installed in 1940-or-50-something would still run perfectly, if the electric were on, right up until it needs to be manually defrosted.


jajajajaj t1_ixqoq4r wrote

I wouldn't bet much, though, it really has been a long time since I saw it running and thought "how is this so old?"


19Chris96 t1_ixqsg6g wrote

My Mainstays (Walmart) brand wall clock I got for Christmas 2012 works the same way. It sets itself and knows when daylight savings time is. However, the calendar only goes to the end of 2036, for some stupid reason.


nickdotcooper t1_ixqtt8v wrote

My 85 year old mother had the same clock. No idea how long she’s had it, but it seems forever.


ExcitingGold t1_ixr29ya wrote

i remember when "atomic" clocks were popular


OhioToDC t1_ixr5kfv wrote

Saving not Savings.


Qualified-Monkey t1_ixr97de wrote

I’ve got one just like it, used to be my grandma’s


phonendatoilet t1_ixrt5tu wrote

OP speaks the truth! Mine lasted 13 years and only broke because of movers.


pinkpiggies13 t1_ixrwnyq wrote

I have a travel alarm clock that’s older than me (I’m 27) and it does the same thing!


BrokenStereoField t1_ixs84xv wrote

I have that same company’s travel clock. It’s like 20 years old with just battery swaps and had never failed.


Capid1 t1_ixt2wll wrote

I have 2 of these and we’re bought in 2009-2010


hoopleheadroom t1_ixwaymz wrote

We have this clock! It’s been passed down from my grandparents to my mom to me and is now in our son’s room. 4 generations of use (so far!).


gerusz t1_ixo5iod wrote

Well, in the US it's been second Sunday of March - first Sunday of November since 1966 so a calendar-clock can determine it easily. Though this one is radio-controlled I think, so it will still work even if that changes.


Nighfe t1_ixokya9 wrote

No it’s only been this way since 2007