Chess with wireless, glowing nixie tubes


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Beautiful chess set, but I try to stay out of electromagnetic fields as much as possible.


I must be missing something.

Don’t the pieces have to be two different colors?


And the board should have alternate colour squares. This does not strike me as a chess set that you could play games with without getting very confused. Like shelves full of books sold by spine colour, it’s more about giving the impression that you are smart than actually being something pretty that you would use.

Also, given the target market (rich idiots), the price seems entirely too low.

ETA: the squares are (barely) distinguishable, in that half have a double outline. Still not seeing how one tells the pieces apart.


The pieces seem to be distinguishable by orientation - eg all the small 'm’s facing in one direction are white pawns, while the others are black.


Hmm…This makes me wonder how difficult it would be to make new nixies…Because this cries out for custom tubes with the chess piece symbols on them. possibly with slightly different gas mixes to differentiate “black” from "white"
A brief search reveals that people ARE making new nixies…


Chess with wireless, glowing nixie tubes


The Nixie tube Sudoku board makes much more sense. Chess pieces are typically differentiated by shape and color, neither of which is offered by this set.

Cool demonstration of wireless power transfer technology, poor choice of application.


You only go out at night?


Wouldn’t need to be actual Nixie tubes, just ordinary neon glow lamps (1 cathode and anode) but with one set using argon and the other using neon. Expensive, though.
This design in the article is a terrible waste of Nixie tubes.


I think you’ve sabotaged your own assumptions. If the price is too low (in your opinion) then it probably wasn’t targeted at “rich idiots”. More to the point, though, why the derision? Can’t someone create something interesting just because it’s interesting? Have you ever heard of the concept of “art”?


Or you could make a board of Nixie-esque tubes, with the chess piece symbols in each square. So 64 custom12 element (differentiate between white and black by the alignment of the pieces) nixie tubes. Or possibly 7 element tubes with a frame around the piece to delineate black vs white. Either way, I think we’re talking north of 100k.


Yes. I’d rather have that Swiss watch which shows the time as numbers on little drums at the ends of the hour and minute hands, even if just servicing it is astronomically expensive.


I just animated some for fun


Sounds like it would be great for playing at night.


At least use different size/shaped Nixie tubes for the different game pieces!


According to WP, "Longer-life tubes that were manufactured later in the Nixie timeline have mercury added to reduce sputtering[4] resulting in a blue or purple tinge to the emitted light. In some cases, these colors are filtered out by a red or orange filter coating on the glass."

So, if coloring the outsides of the tubes is within the bounds of authentic nixie practice, and the unfiltered light output is usually orange-ish, then perhaps a red filter on the “black” pieces and a green filter on the “white” pieces would be a solution?

The target market for “art” is very much “rich idiots.”

The rest of us are welcome to appreciate art, but we are not expected to pay for it.


As one who played in many tournaments for about 10 years straight in my younger days, I typically hate non standard, aka staunton chess sets. However, this is cool.

To those pointing out this would be confusing because the shape and color of the pieces aren’t different, the orientation of the pieces and the fact that they are labeled differently would be enough that it wouldn’t take long to get used to.

However, not many players would prefer to play on this or any other non standard set.


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