# Seconds, Minutes, and Hours

Reference > Science > Technology > Beginner Programming TipsI suspect every young computer programmer has dreamed, at one time or another, about creating the next amazing computer game. The fact is, it's a dream that is realized by a very very small percentage of programmers. But we all have to give it a shot, right? One of the common things you'll need to do is to take an elapsed time in seconds and put it into a format that your game player can read. After all, the player doesn't want to see that he took 12752 seconds to complete the level, right? He wants to know that it took him 3 hours, 32 minutes, and 32 seconds.

Now, how did I come up with that? Easy. I have a little function that converts seconds into other units. Let's take a look at it.

String

Dim Seconds As Integer

Dim Minutes As Integer

Dim Hours As Integer

'Find The Seconds

Seconds = TimeElapsed Mod 60

'Find The Minutes

Minutes = (TimeElapsed \ 60) Mod 60

'Find The Hours

Hours = (TimeElapsed \ 3600)

'Format The Time

If Hours > 0 Then

FormatTime = Format(Hours,"00") & ":"

End If

FormatTime = Format(Hours, "00") & ":"

FormatTime = FormatTime & Format(Minutes,

"00") & ":"

FormatTime = FormatTime & Format(Seconds,

"00")

End Function

Let's take a closer look at this. First, I used the **Mod**operation to get the seconds. "Mod" finds the remainder when one number is divided by another. In this case, when we divide our time elapsed by 60 (one minute), our remainder is the number of seconds left over.

Then I did a similar process to find the minutes, only this time I had to divide the number of seconds by 60 to get the *total* number of minutes. Again, I used the Mod operator to find the remainder (in this case, the number of leftover minutes).

Finally, the number of hours is the number of seconds divided by 3600. Once again, I used Integer division ('\' instead of '/') because we don't want fractional hours.

The last step of the process is putting the values together in a string, using the **Format** function to get the right number of digits in each section.

Of course, there are probably other ways you might want to format your time, and that's what the *Other Scenarios* section of the page explores.