The hourglass is only 700 years old, and came into use at almost exactly the same time as the first mechanical clocks.


The hourglass is only 700 years old, and came into use at almost exactly the same time as the first mechanical clocks.

hourglass

Today, let’s talk about the hourglass.The University of Houston’s College of Engineering presents this series about the machines that run our civilization and the people who make them.

we’ve said a lot about mechanical clocks its time to talk about the clock’s antithesis, the hourglass. First how much old do you think hourglass is, two thousand years old? four thousand years old?Engineer/historian Robert Balmer goes into history to find the answer.

He finds nothing until early 1300 years. it came into use exactly the same time when the first mechanical clock came into use.The hourglass is only about 700 years old.

Of course, the hourglass is kin to water clock as both use a medium to follow through a thin hole.But the hourglass has its own technological personality.

On the other hand, it is cheaper than the mechanical clock or earlier water clocks. Resetting it after it runs down could not be simpler. Its accuracy is not bad enough after you have solved some problems.

On the downside, the hourglass is a short-term timepiece. you cannot load just any old sand into it. You have to find a material that does not absorb water on humidity day.

Its name says its hard as it can run for only an hour. The other big drawback is that it cannot be calibrated.

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The hourglass is only 700 years old, and came into use at almost exactly the same time as the first mechanical clocks.