How do you perceive time when you are visually impaired?

When we talk about senses we often number it as five but the universal truth is: we have many more or less senses the way you perceive the question (vision, hearing, touch, smell, and taste). Time perception is person’s perspective to time; it has been said that the physical time is somewhat appears to be objective. While psychological time in a subject can be explained in phrases like: “Time flies when you are having fun” or “a watched pot never boils”.


There are simple things in life that we take it for granted like glancing your watch and telling people time. The only way one can eliminate avoidable blindness is to break down every barrier in terms of technology.


The two types of watches which are prevalent for visually impaired individual are:


1)Talking watch: Which are sometimes difficult to hear.

2)Analogue watches with removable cover: But they are expensive to repair.

Braille Watch

(Picture source: Women’s committee on Flickr)


With time, there are many innovations and here are some of them:


The stylish timepiece ball bearings rather than hands for telling the time. One ball bearing indicates minutes and the other ball bearing indicates hours. The ball bearings are attached with the watch surface by a magnet and they do move when you touch them and springs back when you shake the watch. For the tactile guide, there are raised hands on the surface of the clock. The history behind this watch is also quite fascinating and it depicts how without vision also you can live a fulfilling life doing everything what a normal individual with do.

The other marvelous invention for time perception for visually impaired individual is braille watch.  The watch can be used by touching the dial of the watch. The watch can be used in both analog and digital way. The analog version has protective glass and it can be flipped open to have a feel of the hands of the clock. The new generation o

f the digital clock has dots. The dots appear like a dot braille script with changing time. The new generation braille watch which are made from crystals that flips up with changing time. As time is passing by technology is giving more and more way to lead a life easy even if you have impaired senses. The new generation braille watches can also tell you the time. The watch can not only tell but also can help you read your notifications from the mobile.

The Dot Smartwatch Makes Time Tangible

(Photo source: Connor Renwick on Flicker)

How does the newest braille watch work?

The mechanism behind braille watch works simply. Beneath the dial lies four motorized modules which pushes the dots. Each of the dots can be displaced upward or downward individually. The dots can displace up to four braille characters at a time. The advantage of this watch is that this devise neither wants the wearer to see the dial nor to tell the time.

Time is like space and subject like physics time and space is woven together. Time is a phenomenon that is worth looking at and more so when you cannot see time, only can feel and hear it.


“To help someone to see was a tremendous feeling and with medical and technological advances, we have greatly increased the ability of eye doctors to give that help”- Professor Fred Hollows.


3 Responses to “How do you perceive time when you are visually impaired?”

  1. Evie Kielnhofer says:

    A really fascinating article! 🙂 Interactive braile is such an exciting invention that really looks to become a more versatile way to integrate digital technology for the visually impaired.

  2. Soumya Mukherjee says:

    Thank you for your comment …… I used to work in a low vision clinic and most commonly asked question was “how do I perceive time?”. Time is such an important factor in everyones day to day activity.

  3. scripps says:

    What an interesting topic! I never thought about how visually impaired people would tell the time.