Fibonacci Clock User Guide

In the contributions Fibonacci Clock - An unusual time indicator, Fibonacci clock assembly and Fibonacci clock programming I described how to build your own Fibonacci clock.

Especially in case you want to give away your self-made Fibonacci clock, it is practical to be able to give away an instruction manual directly. For this case, I have compiled a small instruction manual here 🙂 .

Fibonacci watch instruction manual

The Fibonacci clock represents the time by the first five elements of the Fibonacci sequence.
The "dial" of the clock consists of five squares whose side lengths represent the first five Fibonacci numbers(1, 1, 2, 3, 5).
The hours are represented by red lit squares and the minutes by green lit squares (this color assignment can also be changed). If a square is needed to represent hours and minutes at the same time, it is blue. White squares must be ignored. To read the time, the values of the respective squares must be added together and multiplied by five in the case of the minutes. So for the hours the red and blue squares have to be added together and for the minutes the green and blue squares. The minutes are therefore only displayed in five-minute increments.

There are several display types for the same time. These are selected randomly.
For example, there are 16 different ways to represent 06:30.

Besides the default color palette, other color palettes can also be set.

Fibonacci clock display

The “display” of the Fibonacci clock is divided into five areas, each area of which can light up in a different color.

In order to read the time on the Fibonacci clock, a few basics must first be explained. This picture shows the layout of the Fibonacci clock display. This is divided into five areas. Each of these areas has the specified value. The large red area marked with a “5” has a value of five, the next smaller green area has a value of three, the next smaller blue area has a value of two and the remaining two areas each have a value of one.

Read hours

If you've been paying attention, you'll have noticed that it can be used to represent the numbers 1 to 12, which - surprise - is perfect for representing the number of hours in a clock.
If, for example, only the area with the significance five is lit, it is five o'clock. If, in addition to the area with the significance five, the area with the significance two is also lit, these must be added together. This would then correspond to the time seven (2+5) o'clock.

In this way, all times from 0 (no area is lit) to 12 (all areas are lit) can be displayed.

Read minutes

All well and good, now we know how to count and “calculate” the hours, but how do you recognize the number of minutes in the displayed time?
That's where the different colors come into play. As you've probably already noticed, the surfaces glow in either blue, red or green.
And now the minutes can also be displayed. The clock shows whether the current value is valid only for the number of hours, only for the number of minutes or for both.

If an area is red, its value may only be taken into account for the number of hours.
If an area is green, its value may only be taken into account for the number of minutes.
If, on the other hand, a surface is blue, its significance must be taken into account for both the number of hours and the number of minutes.

But we are not finished yet, the number of minutes read off must now also be multiplied by five.
And that's where we already come to the first small drawback of the watch.
Apart from the fact that - especially at the beginning - it takes a little longer to read off the time, the number of minutes can only be displayed in five-minute steps. This means that 08:43 is not displayed as 08:43 but as 08:40. The display always rounds off to the previous value divisible by five.

Display examples of the time

ATTENTION: If the clock displays other colors than shown in this example, then most likely a different color palette is set. How to change the color palette is described in the section "Settings".


The watch is powered by a micro USB cable(standard cell phone charging cable) and a corresponding USB power adapter(5V/1000mA).
After connecting the clock, it takes about five seconds until the time is displayed.

Connections overview

In this picture, the USB port is circled in red. A micro USB cable must be connected to this port in order to put the clock into operation.
Below are the buttons with which the clock can be set and operated.


The clock can be adjusted via the buttons or touch surfaces on the back.

Set mode

The Fibonacci clock has three different operating modes. In the first, the time is displayed according to the procedure described above. In the second mode, a color change takes place on all luminous surfaces. In the third mode, a color change takes place on each individual luminous surface.
The mode can be changed by pressing the "Mode" key. Consequently, no time display is possible in the two color change modes.

Set hour

Keep the "Hour" key pressed and press the "+" or "-" key.

Set minute

Keep the "Min" key pressed and press the "+" or "-" key. The minutes are always adjusted in 5-minute steps. So 0,5,10,15,20...,50,55,0. (Smaller steps cannot be displayed) Therefore it is recommended to set the minutes when the current "minute time" also corresponds to 0,5,10,15,20...,50,55,0.
A direct exact setting is otherwise possible via the serial interface. For more information, refer to the section "Serial interface".

Set brightness

Hold down the "Brightn" key and press the "+" or "-" key.

Set color palette

in the time mode, press either the "+" or "-" key.

Overview of the adjustable color palettes

No. Surname color nothing color minute color hour color both
1 RGB White Green Red Blue
2 Mondrian White Red Green Blue
3 Basbrun White Red Light yellow Lime green
4 80's White Salmon Ice-White Pink
5 pastel White Salmon Mint green Light blue
6 Modern White Salmon Light blue Light green
7 Cold White Violet Turquoise Blue Ice blue
8 Warm White Bright orange Green Lemon yellow
9 Earth White Light pink Mint green Blue
10 Dark White Light pink Mint green Blue

Set the transition time of the color change

While one of the color change modes is set, press either the "+" or "-" key.

Display Switch on or off

Hold down the "Minute" key and press the "Hour" key.

Setting the timer

The timer can only be set via the serial interface.
The switch-on hour and minute as well as the switch-off hour and minute can be set. In addition, the timer can be switched on or off separately.
The description of the commands is obtained by entering an unknown command or the command "commands".

Serial interface

In addition to the setting option via the buttons, the setting can also be made via the serial interface. For this, the clock must be connected to a computer via a micro-USB cable (for example, the one that supplies it with power).
With a terminal program (for example "HTerm" or the terminal program integrated in the Arduino IDE) the clock can then be addressed at 115200baud. When the clock receives an unknown command or the command "commands" it automatically sends all possible commands with the corresponding explanation. All commands must be terminated with a carriage return(CR). This can be set in the terminal program.

If you have any ideas for improvements or additions please let me know through a comment 🙂 .

Have fun with the project

I hope everything worked as described for you. If not or you have questions or suggestions please let me know in the comments. I will then add this to the article if necessary.
Ideas for new projects are always welcome. 🙂

PS Many of these projects - especially the hardware projects - cost a lot of time and money. Of course I do this because I enjoy it, but if you think it's cool that I share the information with you, I would be happy about a small donation to the coffee fund. 🙂

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