While designing my own clock, I decided to investigate the cathode 
poisoning prevention methods utilized by most clocks, and I discovered that 
there's room to improve and experiment.
Here's a short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skBwGGQ58MI
If you can't or don't want to watch: Switching between cathodes with a 
delay of 1-2 milliseconds is going to provide the same cleaning effect as 
the "slot machine", except without the extreme flicker which may be 
annoying to some.

As for my design - it's two HV5522s in the PLCC package connected to an 
ESP8266(for driving the HV5522s the 3v3 signals are shifted to 5 - that 
works up to a supply of 12.9V) and Yan's NCH6100HV boost board.

It would be interesting to see what everyone here thinks.

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