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Encyclopedia > Doomsday clock
The Doomsday Clock currently stands at five minutes to midnight.
The Doomsday Clock currently stands at five minutes to midnight.

The Doomsday Clock is a symbolic clockface maintained since 1947 by the Board of Directors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists at the University of Chicago. It uses the analogy of the human race being at a time that is "minutes to midnight" where midnight represents "catastrophic destruction". The analogy originally represented the threat of global nuclear war, but has since evolved to include nuclear weapons, climate-changing technologies and "new developments in the life sciences and nanotechnology that could inflict irrevocable harm."[1] Since its introduction, the clock has appeared on the cover of each issue of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. The first representation of the clock was produced in 1947, when artist Martyl Langsdorf, the wife of physicist, Alexander Langsdorf, Jr., who worked on the Manhattan Project, was asked by magazine cofounder Hyman Goldsmith to design a cover for the June issue. The term Minutes to Midnight is typically associated with the Doomsday Clock. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Cover of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists with the famous Doomsday Clock set at seven minutes to midnight. ... For other uses, see University of Chicago (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Midnight (disambiguation) Midnight, literally the middle of the night, is a time arbitrarily designated to determine the end of a day and the beginning of the next in some, mainly Western, cultures. ... Nanotechnology refers broadly to a field of applied science and technology whose unifying theme is the control of matter on the atomic and molecular scale, normally 1 to 100 nanometres, and the fabrication of devices within that size range. ... Cover of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists with the famous Doomsday Clock set at seven minutes to midnight. ... This article is about the World War II nuclear project. ...


The number of minutes before midnight, a measure of the degree of nuclear, environmental, and technological threats, is updated periodically. The clock is currently set to five minutes to midnight, having been advanced by two minutes on January 17, 2007. is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ...

Contents

Time changes

Cover of a 2002 Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists with the famous Doomsday Clock set at seven minutes to midnight. The clock can be seen in the "o" of Atomic in the title.

The clock was started at seven minutes to midnight during the Cold War in 1947, and has subsequently been advanced or rewound at intervals, depending on the state of the world and the prospects for nuclear war. Its setting is relatively arbitrary, set by the Board of Directors at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists in response to global affairs. The setting of the clock has not always been fast enough to cope with the speed of global events, either; one of the closest periods to nuclear war, the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, reached its head and resolution in a number of weeks, and the clock either could not be changed or was not changed to reflect any of this at the time. Nevertheless, the changing of the clock usually does provoke attention. Image File history File links Bulletin_Atomic_Scientists_Cover. ... Image File history File links Bulletin_Atomic_Scientists_Cover. ... For other uses, see Cold War (disambiguation). ... This article is about nuclear war as a form of actual warfare, including history. ... President Kennedy in a crowded Cabinet Room during the Cuban Missile Crisis. ...


The official announcement of the most recent change to five minutes to midnight took place on January 17, 2007 at 14:30 hours GMT.[2][3] is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ...



The clock's hands have been moved 19 times in response to international events since its initial start at seven minutes to midnight in 1947:

Note: the LOWER the graph becomes, the HIGHER the probability of catastrophe is deemed to be.
Year Mins Left Time Change Reason
1947 7 11:53 -- The initial setting of the Doomsday Clock.
1949 3 11:57 -4 The Soviet Union tests its first atomic bomb.
1953 2 11:58 -1 The United States and the Soviet Union test thermonuclear devices within nine months of one another. The clock is at its closest approach to midnight to date.
1960 7 11:53 +5 In response to a perception of increased scientific cooperation and public understanding of the dangers of nuclear weapons.
1963 12 11:48 +5 The United States and Soviet Union sign the Partial Test Ban Treaty, limiting atmospheric nuclear testing.
1968 7 11:53 -5 France and China acquire and test nuclear weapons (1960 and 1964 respectively), wars rage on in the Middle East, Indian subcontinent, and Vietnam.
1969 10 11:50 +3 The U.S. Senate ratifies the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
1972 12 11:48 +2 The United States and the Soviet Union sign the SALT I (Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty) and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.
1974 9 11:51 -3 India tests a nuclear device (Smiling Buddha), SALT II talks stall.
1980 7 11:53 -2 Further deadlock in US-USSR talks, increase in nationalist wars and terrorist actions.
1981 4 11:56 -3 Arms race escalates, conflicts in Afghanistan, South Africa, and Poland add to world tension.
1984 3 11:57 -1 Further escalation of the arms race under the U.S. policies of Ronald Reagan.
1988 6 11:54 +3 The U.S. and the Soviet Union sign treaty to eliminate intermediate-range nuclear forces, relations improve.
1990 10 11:50 +4 Fall of the Berlin Wall, success of anti-communist movements in Eastern Europe, Cold War nearing an end.
1991 17 11:43 +7 United States and Soviet Union sign the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. The clock is at its greatest distance from midnight so far.
1995 14 11:46 -3 Global military spending continues at Cold War levels; concerns about post-Soviet nuclear proliferation of weapons and brainpower.
1998 9 11:51 -5 Both India and Pakistan test nuclear weapons in a tit-for-tat show of aggression; the United States and Russia run into difficulties in further reducing stockpiles.
2002 7 11:53 -2 Little progress on global nuclear disarmament; United States rejects a series of arms control treaties and announces its intentions to withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty; terrorists seek to acquire nuclear weapons.
2007 5 11:55 -2 North Korea’s recent test of a nuclear weapon, Iran’s alleged nuclear ambitions, a renewed U.S. emphasis on the military utility of nuclear weapons, the failure to adequately secure nuclear materials, and the continued presence of some 26,000 nuclear weapons in the United States and Russia.[4] Experts assessing the dangers posed to civilization have added climate change to the prospect of nuclear annihilation as the greatest threats to humankind.


Image File history File links Doomsday_Clock_graph. ... Year 1947 (MCMXLVII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1947 calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1949 (MCMXLIX) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, 1945, rose some 18 km (11 mi) above the epicenter. ... January 7 - President Harry S. Truman announces the United States has developed a hydrogen bomb. ... Year 1960 (MCMLX) was a leap year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1963 (MCMLXIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Treaty Banning poop, in Outer Space, and Under Water, often abbreviated as the Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT), Limited Test Ban Treaty (LTBT), or Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (NTBT), although the former also refers to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), is a treaty intended to obtain an agreement... Year 1968 (MCMLXVIII) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1960 (MCMLX) was a leap year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Also Nintendo emulator: 1964 (emulator). ... Also: 1969 (Stargate SG-1) episode. ... Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Opened for signature July 1, 1968 in New York Entered into force March 5, 1970 Conditions for entry into force Ratification by the United Kingdom, the Soviet Union, the United States, and 40 other signatory states. ... Year 1972 (MCMLXXII) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... SALT I is the common name for the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks. ... The Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM treaty or ABMT) was a treaty between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the limitation of the anti-ballistic missile (ABM) systems used in defending areas against missile-delivered nuclear weapons. ... Year 1974 (MCMLXXIV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the 1974 Gregorian calendar. ... The Smiling Buddha was the first nuclear test explosion by India on May 18, 1974 at Pokhran. ... Year 1980 (MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1980 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1981 (MCMLXXXI) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays the 1981 Gregorian calendar). ... This article is about the year. ... Reagan redirects here. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1990 (MCMXC) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 1990 Gregorian calendar). ... East German construction workers building the Berlin Wall, November 20, 1961. ... Year 1991 (MCMXCI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the 1991 Gregorian calendar). ... START, officially the STrategic Arms Reduction Treaty was a nuclear weapons limitation treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union. ... Year 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display full 1995 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1998 Gregorian calendar). ... Tit for tat is a highly effective strategy in game theory for the iterated prisoners dilemma. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ... The Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM treaty or ABMT) was a treaty between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the limitation of the anti-ballistic missile (ABM) systems used in defending areas against missile-delivered nuclear weapons. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ...


In popular culture

In fiction

  • The Doomsday Clock is referenced in Piers Anthony's novel, Wielding a Red Sword, in which the mythical Incarnation of War can control the position of the hands up to midnight and thereby bring about World War III.
  • The clock illustrations used in the Watchmen graphic novel series is a reference to The Doomsday Clock. On page 18 of issue #1, a newspaper on Adrian Veidt's desk bears the headline "Nuclear Doomsday Clock Stands At Five To Twelve, Warn Experts".
  • In the book by John Bellairs, The House with a Clock in Its Walls, the mystery involves a clock that is ticking down toward doomsday.
  • In the comic "Stormwatch PHD". In issue #4 it is explained that the "original" clock gained magical powers, and if the hands were forcefully turned to 12, it would cause nuclear war.
  • in brewster rockit space guy, they mention something called a "doomsday clock".

Piers Anthony Dillingham Jacob (born August 6, 1934 in Oxford, England) is a writer in the science fiction and fantasy genres, publishing under the name Piers Anthony. ... Incarnations of Immortality is the name of a seven-book fantasy series by Piers Anthony. ... Incarnations of Immortality is the name of a seven-book fantasy series by Piers Anthony. ... A nuclear holocaust is often associated with World War III For other uses, see World War III (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Watchman. ... For other uses, see Ozymandias (disambiguation). ... The House With a Clock in Its Walls is a childrens book written by John Bellairs and originally published in 1972. ... Stormwatch is a fictional United Nations-sponsored superhero team in the Wildstorm Universe. ...

In music

  • The Doomsday Clock is alluded to throughout "2 Minutes to Midnight", a single from Iron Maiden's album Powerslave. In the cover of the band's single, the mascot Eddie is sitting in ruin, with a nuclear explosion behind his back.
  • The song "Def. Con. One." by the band Pop Will Eat Itself includes the lyric "Ten to doomsday, moving fast... Heads up! Mind that blast. No time to sleep, it's Def. Con. One. Can't get no sleep as the ticking ticks on."
  • The song "Why Did I Fall For That" by The Who has the lines "Four minutes to midnight on a sunny day/Maybe if we smile the clock'll fade away/Maybe we can force the hands to just reverse/'Maybe' is a word, maybe 'maybe's' a curse... We simply believe that we'd remain intact/But history is asking why did you fall for that."
  • The song "Easy/Lucky/Free" by Bright Eyes contains the lyrics, "I set my watch to the atomic clock. I hear the crowd count down 'til the bomb gets dropped. I always figured there'd be time enough; I never let it get me down."
  • The Doomsday Clock is directly mentioned in the Ozzy Osbourne song "Thank God for the Bomb" on the album The Ultimate Sin. It is, however, cited in a manner that is inconsistent with the clock's purpose. "The face of the doomsday clock / Has launched a thousand wars / As we near the final hour / Time is the only foe we have."
  • Australian band Midnight Oil discuss the Doomsday Clock and the threat of nuclear war in their song "Minutes to Midnight" from the album Red Sails in the Sunset. The album cover depicted the disturbing scene of the city of Sydney after a fictional nuclear attack.
  • "Midnight in a Perfect World" by DJ Shadow, featuring Gift of Gab (from group Blackalicious), alludes to nuclear war and that we are "now approaching midnight", especially in the full lyrical "Gab Mix" off the Endtroducing..... reissue from 2005.
  • The song "Five Minutes to Midnight" by Boys Like Girls may be a reference to the Doomsday Clock.
  • On the cover of American band Alive's album 11:59, the Trinity test's rising fireball can be seen with the text "It's later than we thought..." written at the bottom.
  • Chaos Theory by Jumpsteady makes mention of the Doomsday Clock in the opening song "Outcha Mouth", saying "I'm the last second, sound of doomsday clock, like an open box of anthrax...".
  • Industrial band Funker Vogt refers heavily to the Doomsday Clock during the chorus of their track "History", a single from the album Survivor, which follows the themes of apocalyptic warfare. Specifically with the lines "The war will soon begin. It's already ten to twelve".
  • In the music video for "Russians" by Sting, the Doomsday Clock is represented by the clock ticking over the main doorway.
  • In ABC's music video "S.O.S", the Doomsday Clock was used as the main theme throughout the video.
  • Linkin Park's album Minutes to Midnight is a reference to the Doomsday Clock.[5]
  • Zeitgeist, a Smashing Pumpkins album, includes a song entitled "Doomsday Clock."
  • In Ozzy Osbourne's "Black Rain" album a song titled "Countdown's Begun" makes reference to the clock.
  • Atreyu's Lead Sails Paper Anchor has a song titled "Doomsday" referring to the Doomsday Clock.
  • Punk band Civil Blitzkrieg are set to release their second full length album, titled "5 Minutes To Midnight"
  • In the music video for the song Party At Ground Zero, by Fishbone, there is a brief shot of a clock pointing to midnight, followed shortly by footage of a nuclear explosion.
  • French electro DJs Justice have a track called 'One Minute To Midnight', the arrangement of which is said to mimic a nuclear explosion.
  • Sentient Earth's song 'Midnight' is a reference to the Doomsdays Clock. From their Concept Album "Purgatory Augury" which is about Nuclear Armageddon.

2 Minutes to Midnight is the eleventh single released by Iron Maiden and the first from their Powerslave album. ... This article is about the band. ... Powerslave is the fifth studio album by the British heavy metal band Iron Maiden, released on 3 September 1984. ... DefCon is a term used in a number of military and paramilitary contexts. ... Pop Will Eat Itself (also known as PWEI or the Poppies) were an English band formed in Stourbridge, with band members from Birmingham, Coventry and the Black Country. ... Its Hard is the 10th studio album by British rock band The Who and the second album after drummer Keith Moon died. ... The Who are an English rock band that first formed in 1964, and grew to be considered one of the greatest[1] and most influential[2] bands in the world. ... Bright Eyes is a band consisting of singer-songwriter/guitarist Conor Oberst, multi-instrumentalist/producer Mike Mogis, Nate Walcott, and a rotating lineup of collaborators drawn primarily from Omahas indie music scene. ... Ozzy redirects here. ... The Ultimate Sin is an album by Ozzy Osbourne. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Red Sails in the Sunset is an album by Midnight Oil that was released in 1984 under the CBS record label. ... This article is about the metropolitan area in Australia. ... DJ Shadow (born Josh Davis on January 1, 1973) is an American DJ, turntablist, music producer and songwriter. ... Gift of Gab is the lead MC for hip hop group Blackalicious (along with Chief Xcel), and a member of Quannum Projects (along with Cheif Xcel, DJ Shadow, Lyrics Born and Lateef the Truth Speaker). ... Blackalicious is an American alternative hip hop duo. ... Endtroducing. ... The Trinity test was the first test of a nuclear weapon, conducted by the United States on July 16, 1945 at , thirty miles (48 km) southeast of Socorro on what is now White Sands Missile Range, headquartered near Alamogordo, New Mexico. ... Jumpsteady (aka Robert Bruce) is a former Psychopathic Records artist and older brother of Joseph Bruce, Violent J of the Insane Clown Posse. ... Funker Vogt is a German Electro band, formed by Gerrit Thomas and Jens Kästel in 1995. ... Survivor (2002) is an aggrotech album by Funker Vogt. ... This article is about the musician. ... ABC is an English New Romantic band that charted eleven Top 40 singles between 1981 and 1990. ... Singles from Minutes to Midnight Released: April 2, 2007 Released: August 20, 2007[1] Released: October 8, 2007 Alternate cover Standard jewel case cover Minutes to Midnight is Linkin Parks third studio album that was released, depending on location, between May 9, 2007 and May 18, 2007. ... Zeitgeist is the sixth commercially-released studio album by American alternative rock band The Smashing Pumpkins. ... Doomsday Clock is a song by The Smashing Pumpkins, and is the opening track on their album Zeitgeist. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...

In television

  • Gummi Bears Season 4 Episode 4 "A Knight to Remember" The ghost of a Gummi knight helps Cubbi destroy the mysterious Doomsday Clock. [citation needed]
  • Glenn Beck had a large Doomsday Clock on the set of his CNN Headline News television show, and he would occasionally adjust the time based on the news of the day.
  • The title of the Venture Brothers episode "Twenty Years to Midnight" is a reference to the Doomsday clock.
  • The eighth episode of the series Heroes is titled "Seven Minutes to Midnight", which was the time on the clock at the release of the episode. Also, the villain Sylar wears a watch that stopped at seven minutes to midnight. The series was filmed and began to air prior to the 2007 adjustment of the Doomsday clock, which until then did indeed read seven minutes to midnight.
  • Adult Swim's night time lineup recently gave reference to the Doomsday clock, by saying sarcastically how we now have five more minutes to do what we want till we die...giving further reference to the recent clock change to five minutes till midnight.
  • The Doctor Who episode "Four to Doomsday" was first aired in 1982, when the clock was at four minutes to midnight.

For the candy, see Gummy bears. ... Glenn Beck (born February 10, 1964) is an American conservative talk-radio and television host. ... CNN Headline News is a spin-off network from the original Cable News Network (CNN) television news network in the United States and Canada. ... The Venture Bros. ... The current version of this article or section is written in an informal style and with a personally invested tone. ... Heroes is an American science fiction drama television series created by Tim Kring. ... Seven Minutes to Midnight is the eighth episode of the NBC supernatural drama series Heroes. ... Gabriel Gray, commonly known by his assumed name of Sylar, is a fictional character and main antagonist on the NBC drama Heroes. ... Adult Swim is the name for an adult-oriented television programming network. ... For other uses, see Doctor Who (disambiguation). ... Four to Doomsay is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four twice-weekly parts from January 18 to January 26, 1982. ...

In games

  • In Magic the Gathering 4th edition, there is an artifact called Armageddon Clock that deals increasing damage to each player, speeding up the game's current outcome if left unattended.
  • The RTS game Rise of Nations, has an Armageddon counter that goes down with every nuclear launch. All players will receive an Armageddon ending (automatic lose) if the counter reaches zero.
  • In the video game Duke Nukem: Zero Hour for the Nintendo 64 the name Zero Hour refers to the Doomsday Clock.
  • In the expansion pack for Command and Conquer Generals, Command & Conquer: Generals – Zero Hour, Zero Hour is a reference to the Doomsday Clock
  • In the Fallout 3 trailer a doomsday clock is seen next to the Vault Boy.

Magic: The Gathering (colloq. ... Rise of Nations is a real-time strategy computer game, developed by Big Huge Games and published by Microsoft on May 20, 2003. ... This article needs to be wikified. ... Fallout 3 is a role-playing game[2] that contains elements of real-time and turn-based combat, currently under development by Bethesda Softworks. ...

See also

Mutual assured destruction (MAD) is a doctrine of military strategy in which a full-scale use of nuclear weapons by one of two opposing sides would effectively result in the destruction of both the attacker and the defender. ... This article is about the theoretical world-ending destruction. ... Risks to civilization, humans and planet Earth are existential risks that would imperil mankind as a whole and/or have major adverse consequences for the course of human civilization, human extinction or even the end of planet Earth. ... Alarmism is the production of needless warnings. ... The design of the Seed Vault as of early 2007 The Svalbard Global Seed Vault (Norwegian: Svalbard globale frøhvelv; also called the Norwegian Seed Bank and Svalbard International Seed Vault) is a doomsday seedbank under construction on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen in the remote arctic Svalbard archipelago. ...

References

  1. ^ Five Minutes to Midnight: Overview. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Retrieved on 2007-07-19.
  2. ^ Reuters - Scientists prepare to move Doomsday Clock forward
  3. ^ Posted Email
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ Linkin Park Finish Apocalyptic Album, Revive Projekt Revolution Tour. MTV (2007-03-06).

Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 200th day of the year (201st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 65th day of the year (66th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

  • Current setting of the Doomsday Clock
  • Timeline of the Doomsday Clock
  • Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
  • Doomsday clock is ticking towards midnight, say scientists

  Results from FactBites:
 
Doomsday Clock (918 words)
The Doomsday Clock is a symbolic clockface maintained since 1947 by the Board of Directors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists at the University of Chicago.
The clock was started at seven minutes to midnight during the Cold War in 1947, and has subsequently been advanced or rewound at intervals, depending on the state of the world and the prospects for nuclear war.
Clock changed to two minutes to midnight (one minute closer, its closest approach to midnight to date).
Doomsday Clock: Information from Answers.com (1833 words)
The Doomsday Clock is a symbolic clockface maintained since 1947 by the Board of Directors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists at the University of Chicago.
The clock was started at seven minutes to midnight during the Cold War in 1947, and has subsequently been moved forwards or backwards at intervals, depending on the state of the world and the prospects for nuclear war.
Industrial band Funker Vogt refers heavily to the doomsday clock during the chorus of their track "History", a single from the album Survivor, which follows the themes of apocalyptic warfare.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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