Attempting to build a clock that will run for 10000 years is a daunting task.
Never the less, that is exactly what the Long Now Foundation is trying to do.
The clock uses binary digital logic, but is mechanical. Time is stored as a 28-bit number where each bit is represented by a mechanical lever.
It is built using the following principles:
- Longevity: With occasional maintenance, the clock should reasonably be expected to display the correct time for the next 10,000 years.
- Maintainability: The clock should be maintainable with bronze-age technology.
- Transparency: It should be possible to determine operational principles of the clock by close inspection.
- Evolvability: It should be possible to improve the clock with time.
- Scalability: It should be possible to build working models of the clock from table-top to monumental size using the same design.