Clock Machines, Calendars and the mesure of time. in Chronicles of Hysal | World Anvil
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Clock Machines, Calendars and the mesure of time.

Common (Imperal) Calendar

Since the dawn of time in Hysal, humans used various natural phenomena to mesure time, like the cycles of the three moon orbiting the sky. In particulary, the 30 day cycle of Veos, the largest of the three moons, allows for the 360 days in a year to be easily divided up into 12 months of 30 days in most calendars, including the Essanian Calendar, which is still in use in most countries today and is known as the Common Calendar.  

Karthian Calendar

The Kharthian Calendar, instead uses the cycle of the moon Hoben, which takes roughly 90 days to complete its lunar cycle. These dont really have months and instead use 10 day weeks, for a total of 9 weeks per 'month' and 36 weeks in a year.  

Invention of the Clock machine

Despite these exceptions, most calendars use the lunar cycle of Veos to mesure months and weeks. Years are mesured by the sun and the starts. As for the time of day, they usualy relied on sun dials, or moon dials for the full moon nights.   However, a growing need for a more accurate time messurement method began to be felt with the invention and subsequent popularisation within the Essanian Empire of the Winged ships. These large and bulky vehicles became essencial for rapid transit of people and merchandise within the empire and many large cities created special areas to accomodate them, then called Landings.   However, airports were sometimes limited in area thanks to the geography and thus had limited space for these large vehicles. This often caused incidents were winged ship pilots would rush to get to a spot before another, since they had limited time to unload and fuel to fly with. Attempts of regulating the flow of winged ships in and out of the airports were similar as what wa done in regular ports. This worked for a time but the number of incident made it clear that a more efficient time management method was needed.   Despite the need, it still took around 200 years and numerous subsequent incidents for the first mechanical clock was invented. It was done in the City of Laenos, which was at the time the capital city of the Western Essanian Empire. It contained numeorus institutions of learning and was an important trade hub. This combined with its central geographical location within the Empire made it near inevitable that the city's airport became the main hub of air travel. Its airport even contained a terminal, used to accomodate the huge number of people arriving and departing the city. This was a luxury that most other airports didnt have at the time.   As the airport grew, the need for time regulation was most accutely felt here, by both pilots and passengers. This, combined with the city's innovative spirit made possible the invention of the very bulky, complicated and costly machine.  

Machine Description

The clock itself was a large and bulky machine, consisting of a engine in the back, powered by steam and a black circle divided into 20 sections by red lines. An axel passed through the middle of the circle would slowly turn a large paddle thats connected to it from left to right, pasing by a red line every hour. However, the clock could not go for the whole day as the axel could not make a full rotation. This rather inefficient feature would be changed in subsequent models.   For the time being the clock stopped at midnight and would remain that way until 4 am. Meanwhile, an operator had to manualy remove the wooden paddel from the right and place it back to the left, which would start the day cycle again once the clock machine's engine would restart. The whole contraption was placed atop a large tower build over the terminal. Its location, facing the airport, gave everyone a view of the time.   During its 2 hour alocated time, a winged ship had to land, unload, and check for any damages. Once this was done, it could load and lift up before it flew away, allowing another ship to take its place. The implementation of this large machine and new system was overall successful and even gradualy allowed for greater traffic in and out of the airport. The empire soon commitioned the contruction of new clocks in most large airports of the time, like the ones in the City of Palynor and the City of Tareghasi, which are still there to this day.  

Waining popularity

After the fall of the Empire however, the construction of new clocks stopped for a time, as they were now considered more of a vanity project rather than an necessity, since for many decades after the collapse, air travel became rare and even more expensive. Even the clocks that were already constructed suffered degragation and most of them stopped working thanks to the lack of funds to repair them and even in some cases, the lack of knowledge to do so.  

Unification of the commonweath and repopularisation

This changed when the The Commonwealth of Kinvalia and Perynoria united itself, which made fast airborne travel over the Arrosian sea a necessity again. Airports were renovated and expended in the commonweatlth, starting with the one in Palynor, followed by Kinrivel and the one that started it all, Laenos. This had a snowball effect and soon, the contruction and expansion of airports became a necessity again. New, less bulky Clock machines and the towers they would go on were once again built. Today, nearly every big city in Enask and Arros possess an airport, which always has a clock machine overlooking the landings and the city.
Glossary  
  • Clock Machine: Original name for the large clocks placed on the top of Airport towers. Now generaly refered to as clock(s)
 
  • Landing: Patch of ground, usualy consisting of dirt, gravel or pavement where Winged ships are able to land. The plurral form of Landing; Landings, is also the old name for an Airport. They consist of multiple landing spots and a central terminal for passengers and merchandise.

Comments

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Nov 22, 2023 18:33 by Enoris Leinwand

This article is very complete and I liked reading it and learn about the time in your setting