bronze-age technology. Repeat this process for 10,000 hours. This could be enough to, for example, throw the phase of the Moon off by a few days over 10,000 years. There are technological artifacts, such as fragments of pots and baskets, from 10,000 years in the past, so there is some precedent for human artifacts surviving this long, although very few human artifacts have been continuously tended for more than a few centuries. Special updates on the 10,000 Year Clock project are posted on the members only Clock Blog. The clock is designed to tick just once a year and chime once per millennium. It sounds like science fiction, but this is the real vision for the 10 000-Year Clock, a monument-size mechanical clock designed to measure time for 10 millennia. © 2020 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, LLC. It is a huge Clock, hundreds of feet tall, designed to tick for 10,000 years. Bezos says the team has carved into the mountain five anniversary chambers, for 1, 10, 100, 1000 and 10,000 year anniversaries. Another poetic element … , In the words of Stewart Brand, a founding board member of the foundation, "Such a clock, if sufficiently impressive and well-engineered, would embody deep time for people. However, every human culture counts days, months (in some form), and years, all of which are based on lunar and solar cycles. The 10,000 Year Clock is essentially a giant self winding watch; humans can wind it, but the watch mechanism also self winds from the expansion and contraction of the rock of the mountain itself. That is deliberate practice. According to Wired, he's invested at least $42 million in the project. We have found these are generally good principles for designing anything to last a long time. And to be a story, it has to have an element of mystery to it. The project was conceived by Danny Hillis in 1986. "Geneva Mechanism." The Long Now Foundation. [source: Brand, Stewart. Every once in a while the bells of this buried Clock play a melody. As of June 2018[update], two more prototypes are on display at The Long Now Museum & Store at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Such icons reframe the way people think.". (Nov. 21, 2009) http://www.britannia.com/history/h7.html, Chabon, Michael. Unlike some industrialists out there today, Jeff Bezos is fond of the notion that we should maintain Earth as the long-term home for humanity. Hillis with additional thoughts brought about by discussion with the The Orrery uses the same type of mechanism as the 10,000 Year Clock to measure the movement of the planets. Photo by Nicholas Chatfield-Taylor courtesy of. At noon the light from the Sun, a timer that is accurate but (due to weather) unreliable, is concentrated on a segment of metal through a lens. A two-meter prototype is on display at the Science Museum in London. They’re very understandable. The chimes on the 10,000 Year Clock, designed by Brian Eno, will never play the same combination of sounds twice over the course of 10,000 years. Weird & Wacky, Copyright © 2020 HowStuffWorks, a division of InfoSpace Holdings, LLC, a System1 Company. Nov. 6, 2009. As of June 2018 , two more prototypes are on display at The Long Now Museum & Store at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. How can an electrode suit treat nerve disorders? Coordinates: 31°26′54″N 104°54′14″W / 31.44841°N 104.90384°W / 31.44841; -104.90384. How does the 10,000 Year Clock work? With that said, even the Long Now Foundation admits that some of the technical issues haven’t been worked out yet (and that is one of the reasons why the project doesn’t even have an estimated completion date – again, good to have very rich friends). Mechanical clock designed to keep time for 10,000 years, External events that the clock could track or be adjusted by, "How to Make a Clock Run for 10,000 Years", "The Clock of the Long Now: mechanical drawings and assemblies", Main page for the Clock on the Long Now Foundation website, Images, schematics of the first prototype, Full AutoCAD and PDF plans for the first prototype, Wired Magazine article on the clock, May 1998, Discover Magazine article on the clock, November 2005, "THE CLOCK OF THE LONG NOW": A Talk with Stewart Brand, Ted Talk by Stewart Brand describing the project, Long Now image - Photos: The 10,000 Year Clock - CNET News, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Clock_of_the_Long_Now&oldid=975924536, Collections of the Science Museum, London, Buildings and structures celebrating the third millennium, Articles containing potentially dated statements from June 2018, All articles containing potentially dated statements, Pages incorrectly using the quote template, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, stellar alignment (unreliable because of weather), solar alignment (unreliable because of weather), This page was last edited on 31 August 2020, at 05:33. "Time Machine." (Nov. 17, 2009) http://www.longnow.org/clock/orrery/, Long Now Foundation. (Nov. 22, 2009) http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/229059/Geneva-mechanism, Lemley, Brad. Ideally, it would do for thinking about time what the photographs of Earth from space have done for thinking about the environment. Suffice it to say that among other things, Mr. Bezos, Hillis, and the other people involved in the 10,000 Year Clock project are dedicated to our species collectively upping our game when it comes to understanding the wisdom and application of authentic long-term decision making. On the other hand, the clock is a product of our time, and it seems appropriate to pay homage to our current arbitrary systems of time measurement. Already a second site for the next 10,000 Year Clock has been retained in Nevada. Nov. 26, 2005. (Nov. 21, 2009) http://www.britannia.com/history/h7.html, Chabon, Michael. In effect, the conversion logic is a simple digital computer (more specifically, a digital differential analyser), implemented with mechanical wheels and levers instead of typical electronics. A close inspection of the operational principals should reveal the inner workings and principals behind its operation. The design team considered everything from how the clock should indicate time down to the atmosphere of the clock dial chamber. (Dec. 3, 2009) http://longnow.org/about/, Brittania History. See more. (Dec. 3, 2009) http://www.longnow.org/clock/chimes/, Long Now Foundation: "The 10,000 Year Clock: Principles." For instance, the ratio of day to years depends on Earth's rotation, which is slowing at a noticeable but not very predictable rate. If I hurry I should finish the clock in time to see the cuckoo come out for the first time. Everything from the atomic age to space travel saw enormous private and government investment into science research and development. The combination can, in principle, provide both reliability and long-term accuracy. It will be housed in a series of rooms (the slowest mechanisms visible first) in the white limestone cliffs, approximately 10,000 feet (3,000 m) up the Snake Range. A serial binary adder converts the timing from the pendulum to one of six dials on the clock's face. The site's dryness, remoteness, and lack of economic value should protect the clock from corrosion, vandalism, and development. With occasional maintenance, the clock should Most of how the 10,000 Year Clock will work has been developed already, and its systems are deceptively complex given how the machine is meant to operate. I ultimately think stories are the things that last the longest. "We're likely to need more long-term thinking. (Dec. 3, 2009) http://longnow.org/about/, Brittania History. When completed (there is no completion date yet), the Clock will be open to guests – and in fact the entire installation is meant to impress. The "Clock of the Long Now," which will tell time for the next 10,000 years, has cost $42 million to build so far. These are the principles that Danny The Long Now Foundation has purchased the top of Mount Washington near Ely, Nevada, which is surrounded by Great Basin National Park, for the permanent storage of the full-sized clock, once it is constructed. Two of the most important technical challenges faced by the 10,000 Year Clock’s team were how to keep it powered and how to keep it accurate. The manufacture and site construction of the first full-scale prototype clock is being funded by Jeff Bezos's Bezos Expeditions, with $42 million, and is on land which Bezos owns in Texas. But some of his preferred topics include space travel, earth exploration and an occasional plug for entertainment on Amazon Prime Video. The clock itself is described by Bezos as one "designed to be a symbol, an icon for long-term thinking. Neal Stephenson's novel Anathem was partly inspired by his involvement with the project, to which he contributed three pages of sketches and notes. The purpose behind the 10,000 Year Clock – in addition to its compelling engineering challenge – is a sentimental one for the masses, brought to life thanks to the spending power of our current society’s ultra-rich.