There was a recent article in Wired magazine that talked about Jeff Bezos’ 10,000 year clock. He has given $42 million to have it built in the Texas hills.
The same article goes into great length about half a dozen others involved in the project including Danny Hillis the designer of the clock.
What this extensive article ignores, is the central role of Stewart Brand, founder of the Long Now Foundation that is building the clock. Stewart is either the mother or the father of this entire project along with Danny Hillis.
Stewart is now suffering from what I have suffered from for decades: give enough other people credit for their contributions and your central role will be forgotten,
My role in the 10,000 year clock is negative. From the beginning Stewart’s idea was to get people thinking in long historic terms. Stewart’s interests are all related to conservation.
My response to Stewart when we began talking about this was that the Egyptians built pyramids, very much like Stewart’s clock and nobody knows what the pyramids were about.
I wrote about this in an earlier blog.
On the other hand, some of the slaves who helped build some of the pyramids created a culture out of their sect that believed in one God, and those people have completely changed history. To this day we know their story about Egypt, the slaves and their own history of escape. (See Exodus).
The lesson for me is to build human institutions not physical objects.
In another blog I have discussed the structures at Ise in Japan that combines both institution (Jews) and physical object (Pyramid). A shrine rebuilt on the same spot every 20 years in identical form for more than 1,600 years of recorded history.