Binary Clock Windows Gadget

You can download this gadget here.

The tell tale sign of a true software developer is the ability to read a binary clock. In order to help one and all achieve such an “esteemed” status I have developed a binary clock windows gadget as pictured below.

This gadget allows for many customizations including both binary coded decimal (BCD) and true binary format. BCD format is the most common format of the binary clock and as its name indicates, it simply displays the binary encoding of each number in the current time. To read the clock you simply have to figure out the binary number represented by each column. In the picture above we see that the first two columns represent the number 1 and thus the current hour is 11 o’clock.

For the purests out there, this gadget also supports the true binary format as picture below. This format displays three columns, one for the hour, one for the minute, and one for the second each displaying the true binary form of the corresponding number.

The clock also supports 12 (pictured below) and 24 hour (pictured above) formats in both the BCD and true binary form.

The gadget comes with seven available color modes: Amber, Blue, Green, Purple, Red, White, and Yellow as shown below.

The text at the bottom of the clock is completely customizable. In the settings panel, there are three options for the text: Time & Date, Binary Clock, or Custom Text.

If you select the Time & Date setting, you have complete control over what is displayed by specifying the format of the text. For example, if you wanted to show the current month, day, and year you could enter MMMM dd, yyyy in the Format text box. All the possible format strings are shown on the settings page as pictured above. Simply combine them to make the time and date format you desire.

The Binary Clock setting will display the current hour and minute in binary. Thus, if it is currently 7:47, the text would display 00111:101101. Note that the hour portion of the time will be displayed according to whether or not you are showing 12 or 24 hour time.

Lastly, if you select Custom Text, you can enter anything you want in the settings and it will be displayed at the bottom of the clock.

This gadget requires the Silverlight framework to run. The framework can be downloaded from here.

64-bit Users: If you have a 64-bit system, the following image will appear even if you have Silverlight installed. The problem is that there is no 64-bit Silverlight Framework (just as there is no 64-bit version of Flash) but there is a 64-bit Windows Sidebar application which is started by default if you have a 64-bit system. Thus, if you want to run this gadget, you will need to have the 32-bit version of the Windows Sidebar application startup when Windows starts. For instructions on how to do this, click here.


11 Responses to “Binary Clock Windows Gadget”

  1. mmarrioo Says:

    Thank you for your work. Gadget is working great. I have only one question. How to set “Always on top”? If I click right mouse button on the clock then Silverlight menu is showing.

  2. Dennis Says:

    Hi Nick,

    I think your Binary Clock is great.

    Your Binary Clock is no longer available on the Windows Live Gallery (it’s been retired). Is your clock available any place else?


  3. Reloj digital binario para Window Vista / Windows 7 « iWannaBit iWannaBit Says:

    […] el campo de la informática si no eres capaz de leer un reloj binario. Al menos esto es lo que cree Nick Olsen, desarrollador de software que ha puesto a nuestra disposición el reloj digital binario que […]

  4. Gyula Kulifai Says:


    I’ve a plan to make a clock with mixed system, 2 and 3:
    Minutes: 22323 (in fifth scale use +1 for base point)
    Hours: 2223
    Days: 22222
    Months: 223
    Years: (223)(223)(223)(223)

    If you wanna do it, or share your code to change it

  5. Gyula Kulifai Says:

    I screwed the year; the right: (23)(23)(23)(23)

  6. kapilpatil84 Says:

    Can you please add option to support multiple Timezone. Actually I want two instance of Binary Clock running displaying different time as per timezone set.

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