11.11 again?

I opened my eyes this morning and the clock said 5.55. Don’t worry, I closed them again pretty sharpish. When I regained consciousness again I thought “That’s pretty unusual”, then realised that it probably wasn’t.

So here’s my attempt at some maths. You can stop reading here if you like.

The clock is set to 12 (rather than 24) hour display, so there are 12 x 60 = 720 different numbers it might be showing. How many of those would make you think “Hey, look!”?

All the same number: 1.11, 2.22, 3.33, 4.44, 5.55, 11.11
Hour and number the same: 1.01, 2.02. 3.03. 4.04, 5.05, 6.06, 7.07, 8.08, 9.09, 10.10, (11.11 already counted) 12.12.
Counting up: 1.23, 2.34, 3.45, 4.56, 12.34
Counting down: 2.10, 3.21, 4.32, 5.43, 6.54

Any more suggestions? I count 27 numbers that would make you look. 720/27 is 1 in 27. That’s not very unusual. If you look at a clock about once every half hour during your waking day you’ll see a “hey look” time about once a day.

I realise some times are more visible than others – I expereince many more hours-beginning with-9 than I do hours-beginning-with-4, but it’s Saturday and I’m not actually that good at statistics.


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