Thursday, July 05, 2012

Seven-Segment Displays

A seven-segment display, or seven-segment indicator, is a form of electronic display device for displaying decimal numerals that is an alternative to the more complex dot-matrix displays. Seven-segment displays are widely used in digital clocks, electronic meters, and other electronic devices for displaying numerical information.

The idea of the seven-segment display is quite old. In 1910, for example, a seven-segment display illuminated by incandescent bulbs was used on a power-plant boiler room signal panel.

Two years ago seven-segment displays
turned a hundred years old and I missed it
if anybody threw them a party.

I would have liked to attend that party.

I once learned to program a controller
using assembly language programming
that would translate a binary value
within the digit range zero-to-nine
(0, 1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 110,111, 1000, 1001)
to illuminate the proper segments
on a classic seven-segment display.

It was an academic exercise
but seven-segment displays still exist
outside academia in the world.

This is an amazing technology.

Before there were light-emitting diodes
plain light bulbs made seven-segment displays.

Now there are high-density bit-mapped screens
of organic light-emitting diodes
displaying type faces that simulate
the look of a seven-segment display.

This abstract technology will exist
within three physical generations
of nuts-and-bolts hardware reality.

I don’t celebrate my own birthday but
I would have liked to attend that party
celebrating seven-segment displays
two years ago reaching the hundred mark.

If we’re abstract technology ourselves
maybe in one or another design
of nuts-and-bolts hardware reality
I can help them celebrate two hundred.

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“Sexy As The Dead Bridges”

No Doubts About The Party

Is This A Junkyard Church

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