I made a steampunk clock using an old wooden telephone box, three analog gauges, switches, a viewport, and a wind-up mechanism. The clock displays the hours, minutes and seconds on the gauges and when you wind it up, it displays the month, date and day of the week as well as playing a video of the correct moon phase for the current date and time. The dials are electroluminescent and are activated and dimmed by touch. The clock plays audio including four selectable volume controllable clock sounds and random sound effects when the moon phase video is being played. The time is set using the chicken head knobs and the date is set via a usb port.
The code is written for the arduino platform (I'm using a mega) and the arduino IDE.
Check out the video,
And here's a link to the longer version of the video with closeups and more detail:
I am a mechanical engineer by training and by practice. I like to hack around with electronics and know enough about them to be dangerous and to be able to build some fun stuff. I am not a trained programmer but have written some pretty extensive programs over my career. Do not be intimidated by this project, please.
I firmly believe that anyone with gumption can take on some or even all of this project and be successful. Break it down into pieces. I'll try to give you as much info as possible to lead you in the right direction.