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Anything your regular alarm clock can do, Ben Heck's can do better


If it's a fight between any gadget, console or mode of transportation and Mr. Benjamin Heckendorn, your money should be on the latter every single time. To kick-start the second season of his eponymous show, the man they call Heck takes on difficult to program alarm clocks with their non-standard arrays of tiny buttons and annoying flashes. His solution? Build a universal model with a single rotary wheel control that's so easy to use a pensioner wearing oven mitts could do it. You can check out the episode in its full visual glory after the break.

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Fans show their enthusiasm for first season of the popular online series with nearly 3 million views to date

CHICAGO – Oct. 10, 2011 – element14
, the first collaborative community and electronics store for design engineers and electronics enthusiasts, and modding guru Ben Heck, put everyday alarm clocks to shame with Attack of the Super Clock, the season two opener of "The Ben Heck Show." Sporting larger-than-life controls and display, this easy-to-use super clock makes waking up on time alarmingly simple for everyone.

"Nothing is worse than knowing you missed your alarm. This was such a fun and useful project idea, and one that I've wanted to build for quite some time," said Ben. "As we embark on season two of the show, I wanted to build something practical and helpful. What could be better than a super clock-it takes all the guess work out of waking up on time and helps foster a good night's rest."

Inspired by his own tardy arrivals due to faulty alarm clocks, Ben walks viewers through the components of the build-from creating LED matrixes for the backlit display, to programming the rotary encoder input devices used to set the time, and building the "brain" of the alarm using a microcontroller and a real-time clock (RTC). Once all the pieces are assembled, the final build is one incredible super clock that fits snuggly into a custom-built enclosure complete with large, easily accessible controls.

"The super clock build is a fun, creative and technically challenging project to begin the all-new second season of Ben's show," said Kevin Yapp, chief marketing officer, Premier Farnell. "We are thrilled with the response to the first season and promise to continue delivering what dedicated fans have come to love: a healthy mix of humor, technical information and creative modding projects."

Fans of the latest episode are invited to join the discussion online at element14to enter for a chance to win Ben's super clock featured on this episode, as well as to send Ben a challenge for a future build or submit videos of their own builds.

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