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I was reading about the Long Now clock, which is a clock designed to run for 10,000 years without human intervention. It got me thinking about why such a clock might be an important artifact in a post-apocalyptic world.

So my question for all of you is: why would knowing the time according to the creators of the clock (presumably accurate) be important to people after the apocalypse?

I'm thinking of it being long enough after the apocalypse that there are relatively stable communities, as in Fallout: New Vegas, but not so long that things like bandits are not a problem. The tech level is flexible, but preferably there are no computers, or they are very rare. The cause of the apocalypse is also flexible.

Edit

To clarify, I'm not asking about why Long Now is doing it. Their reasons are listed on their website, so no guesswork needed. I'm wondering what conditions would make such a clock important to people after the apocalypse.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by sphennings, Mołot, AndreiROM, Palarran, ShadoCat Feb 23 '18 at 18:08

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ You are asking about thoughts of real people. I'm not sure if this is world building at all. $\endgroup$ – Mołot Feb 23 '18 at 16:28
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    $\begingroup$ The format for this site is that you come up with possible reasons, and we critique them, or suggest improvements. We don't really make up the reasons for you. As for the actual clock? I'm sure that whomever is building it has posted some mission statement on the web. $\endgroup$ – AndreiROM Feb 23 '18 at 16:29
  • $\begingroup$ Because a religion has sprung up over this wonderful and mysterious artifact, wars have been fought, plagues and miracles attributed to it etc,... nothing to do with it keeping time $\endgroup$ – Kilisi Feb 23 '18 at 16:33
  • $\begingroup$ @Molot I'm not asking about why Long Now is doing it. Their reasons are listed on their website, so no guesswork needed. I'm wondering what conditions would make such a clock important to people after the apocalypse. $\endgroup$ – A Very Large Bear Feb 23 '18 at 17:28
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    $\begingroup$ It might be better to propose a scenario where the Long Now clock is used and ask if there are any problems with that scenario. As is is written, this question looks like a "write my story for me" post. Since those never go over well here, you should avoid posts that even look like that. $\endgroup$ – ShadoCat Feb 23 '18 at 18:08
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Perhaps the issue isn't the importance of exact time to the apocalypse survivors, but rather its importance to some surviving technology which predates Armageddon. For example, a vault's time-lock might require a functioning link to the Long Clock to confirm that it should allow itself to be opened. Without a universally recognized source of time, the vault stays locked and some valuable resources remain unavailable to the survivors.

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I could imagine that the apocalypse screwed up the atmosphere somehow (nuclear winter, impact winter, volcanic ash or dust from the hooves of the 4 riders). Without seeing the exact position of the sun, or stars for that matter, keeping track over the course of a couple of 'days' would definetly outsync you by hours, if not days for longer periods.
Measuring time relative to dates would become quite challenging, having the Master of Time come along to sync your improvised mechanisms with his artefact of precision would be nice go get things back on track. You wouldn't want to get your kid get eaten by atomic rats because it kept missing first lesson in post-apocalypse survival school.

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