FreakyFriday: Weird of the Day – University of Munich Students Create Real-Life ‘Harry Potter’ Clock

By: iCopywriter Senior Editor, Heather Price-Wright


Overall, it’s been a freaky week in social media. This terrible story reminded us why we shouldn’t live our lives simply to “share” what we see online, because the consequences can be dire. Plus, as The Guardian reported earlier this year, and as way too many recent news stories have reminded us, Twitter and other social networking sites are harder to resist than cigarettes and alcohol. Truly scare stuff.

So what do we do when the online world feels bleak and unfriendly? Turn to magic, of course!

A group of students at the University of Munich has created its own version of the clock in the Harry Potter book and movie series. You know the one we mean – the Weasleys’ household timepiece that shows, not the hour of the day, but the location of all the members of the family (including, spookily, “mortal peril”).

The students – Claudius Böttcher, Fabius Steinberger, Frederik Brudy and Felix Praschak – don’t run their clock on actual magic (we wish) but instead via a mobile app. The app can be updated manually, or use GPS tracking to automatically log a person’s location. And as far as we can tell, when it comes to mortal peril, there’s no app for that.

Lack of actual magic aside, the clock is a pretty cool, and potentially even useful, little invention. It features modified hands (which you’d label with people’s names) that rotate 360 degrees, connected to a microcontroller that will turn the hands when a server is updated with users’ locations. Which, as far as we non-engineers are concerned, is basically magic anyway. The clock features 12 location options:

  • Work
  • On the Way
  • Home
  • Sports
  • Lunch
  • Hospital
  • Prison
  • Lost
  • Travel
  • Relax
  • Party
  • University

We like that it retains some of the tongue-in-cheek humor of the original wizarding clock, with entries like “prison” (just in case you don’t get your one phone call).

What do you think? Are you as obsessed as we are with getting one of these for your own house? After all, who hasn’t wanted to pretend they live in The Burrow with Fred, George, Ron, Ginny and the rest of the gang?

Have you checked out lately? We can wave our very own magic wands to produce the best-quality content for your business.