Within the framework of the Bar-Hillel Colloquium for the History, Philosophy and Sociology of Science 2015-2016
In 1927, five separate groups of researchers developed methods for building a quartz clock that would provide a totally new basis for measuring time and that would become a key component of electronic technology. Each of these groups focused on a different aspect of the research and development of electronic telecommunication systems. And each of them developed a quartz clock for a different entity: communications corporations, the state, and individuals. The different needs of these entities led to different immediate goals and divergent research directions. In the lecture we will discuss the technological and scientific reasons that these different paths converged in this important invention that met several goals of that period.