“Look inside. It’s amazing.”

Education Science Technology
YouTube player

That phrase could be Bill Hammack’s tagline. This week, it’s the piezoelectric crystal oscillator in a $9.99 digital watch from Target, a device so ubiquitous that it has become “ephemeralized,” as Bucky Fuller put it: Almost any device that runs on electricity is expected to include one. I knew how they worked, in a general way, before watching this video. But here’s one of the many things I did not know: The quartz crystal in the oscillator is only 3mm long and less than 1mm across, yet each one is individually tuned at the factory. Wanna know how they do it? Click away. [Thanks, Bill!]

More:

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!
Tagged

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and makezine.com. My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan

ADVERTISEMENT

Ready to dive into the realm of hands-on innovation? This collection serves as your passport to an exhilarating journey of cutting-edge tinkering and technological marvels, encompassing 15 indispensable books tailored for budding creators.

FEEDBACK