If there’s two kinds of wasteful apps that we still want to have, it’s digital clocks, and particle accelerators. Okay perhaps I made that line up just so I could introduce this app, which is both those things.
Much like Uzu for iPad, Nlug is a particle accelerator, in that digital particles dynamically react to touch and other inputs. But it’s also a fantastic clock. Every second, a digit is broken into pixel sized pieces, and pulled back to form a new digit. This becomes two digits on every 10th second, and so on, until it’s a thing of beauty to watch the hour turn. You can of course touch any of the particles and they’ll fly out; beautiful. Rotate the iPad and the numbers burst out and form again. And that’s pretty much it. At the end of the day, it’s a fancy clock. I’d rather this app cost $0.99 like the other ‘useless but cool’ apps, but it costs $1.99. Which might just perfect for you. Watch the demo video they’ve created, though it’s quite different in person (and without the sound), it’s still better than the way these screenshots turned out.
I should mention that Nlug is created by the guys at the389.com, who have been experimenting with physics and web technologies in the numerous (pointless) experiments they’ve put through. Some, like this Drops experiment, are quite fun to click around through. Even the Nlug website gives you some idea of how the clock will behave to your touch.