- noun a device which shows the time
- Device for keeping time. Clocks and astronomy have influenced each other profoundly for centuries. Sundials were the first clocks, and their relation to the sky is obvious and direct. They have been supplanted by clockwork and electronics, which are more precise, and by atomic clocks, which depend upon the vibrations of atoms themselves and are the most precise timekeepers known. The historic quest of clockmakers is to find a clock which is as accurate as the Earth’s own rotation, the Moon’s journey around the Earth, and the Earth’s around the Sun, which are basis of all clocks and calendars. But atomic clocks are more steady and predictable than the Earth itself, making them powerful tools for scientific investigation.
- A circuit or device which provides a steady stream of timed pulses. Used, for instance, as the internal timing device of a digital computer, upon which all its operations depend.
- An instrument or device which measures and indicates time. For instance, that kept and displayed by a TV.
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