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While there is no completion date scheduled, we do plan to open it to the public once it is ready. The essay below by Long Now board member Kevin Kelly discusses what we hope the Clock will be once complete.
This is one of several projects by Long Now to foster long-term thinking in the context of the next 10, years. It is a huge Clock, hundreds of feet tall, designed to tick for 10, years.
Every once in a while the bells of this buried Clock play a melody. Most times the Clock rings when a visitor has wound it, but the Clock hoards energy from a different source and occasionally it will ring itself when no one is around to hear it. The Clock is real. It is now being built inside a mountain in western Texas.
This Clock is the first of many millennial Clocks the designers hope will be built around the world and throughout time. There is a second site for another Clock already purchased at the top of a mountain in eastern Nevada, a site surrounded by a very large grove of 5,year-old bristlecone pines.
Appropriately, bristlecone pines are among the longest-lived organisms on the planet. The designers of the Clock in Texas expect its chimes will keep ringing twice as long as the oldest 5 millennia-old bristlecone pine.
Ten thousand years is about the age of civilization, so a 10K-year Clock would measure out a future of civilization equal to its past. That assumes we are in the middle of whatever journey we are on — an implicit statement of optimism. The Clock is now being machined and assembled in California and Seattle.
Meantime the mountain in Texas is being readied. Why would anyone build a Clock inside a mountain with the hope that it will ring for 10, years? Part of the answer: If you have a Clock ticking for 10, years what kinds of generational-scale questions and projects will it suggest?
If the Clock keeps going after we are personally long dead, why not attempt other projects that require future generations to finish? I cannot imagine the future, but I care about it.
I know I am a part of a story that starts long before I can remember and continues long beyond when anyone will remember me. I sense that I am alive at a time of important change, and I feel a responsibility to make sure that the change comes out well.
I plant my acorns knowing that I will never live to harvest the oaks.
I want to build a clock that ticks once a year. The century hand advances once every years, and the cuckoo comes out on the millennium. I want the cuckoo to come out every millennium for the next 10, years. He and Stewart Brand, a cultural pioneer and trained biologist, launched a non-profit foundation to build at least the first Clock.
Bezos is also active in designing the full experience of the Clock. The first step in this multi-decade project was to construct a working 8-foot-tall prototype. At the stroke of midnight, the prototype 10,year Clock bonged twice to usher in the new millennia, the yearin front of a small crowd at its temporary home in the Presidio, San Francisco.
The Clock now resides in the London Science Museum. Somewhat worrisome, there have been moments when it was not wound. In contrast to the human-scale of the prototype, the Clock in the mountain will be monumental, almost architectural in scale. It will be roughly feet tall.
Just reaching the entrance tunnel situated feet above the high scrub desert will leave some visitors out of breath, nicked by thorns, and wondering what they got themselves into.
To see the Clock you need to start at dawn, like any pilgrimage. Once you arrive at its hidden entrance in an opening in the rock face, you will find a jade door rimmed in stainless steel, and then a second steel door beyond it.
These act as a kind of crude airlock, keeping out dust and wild animals. You rotate its round handles to let yourself in, and then seal the doors behind you.
It is totally black. You head into the darkness of a tunnel a few hundred feet long. There is a tiny dot of light far away, at the top of top of a foot long vertical tunnel about 12 feet in diameter. There is stuff hanging in the shaft. The dot of light beckons you.Sail through Studies with Our Essay Writing Service.
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