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Stopwatch

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Title: Stopwatch  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Timekeeper, Drift Sight, 60 Minutes, Watch, Timer
Collection: Clocks, Horology, Portable Tools, Timers
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Stopwatch

Stopwatch animation for 59 seconds and its reading (on fast computers it takes less than 59 seconds.)
A stopwatch is a handheld timepiece designed to measure the amount of time elapsed from a particular time when it is activated to the time when the piece is deactivated. A large digital version of a stopwatch designed for viewing at a distance, as in a sports stadium, is called a stopclock.
A typical mechanical analog stopwatch.

The timing functions are traditionally controlled by two buttons on the case. Pressing the top button starts the timer running, and pressing the button a second time stops it, leaving the elapsed time displayed. A press of the second button then resets the stopwatch to zero. The second button is also used to record split times or lap times. When the split time button is pressed while the watch is running, the display freezes, allowing the elapsed time to that point to be read, but the watch mechanism continues running to record total elapsed time. Pressing the split button a second time allows the watch to resume display of total time.

Mechanical stopwatches are powered by a mainspring, which must be periodically wound up by turning the knurled knob at the top of the watch.

Digital electronic stopwatches are available which, due to their Nixie-tube readout and provided a resolution of 1/1000 second. Its first use was in ski racing, but was later used by the World University Games in Moscow, Russia, the U.S. NCAA, and in the Olympic trials.

The device is used when time periods must be measured precisely and with a minimum of complications. Laboratory experiments and sporting events like sprints are good examples.

The stopwatch function is also present as an additional function of many digital wristwatches, cell phones, portable music players, and computers.

Popular Culture

The popular newsmagazine 60 Minutes uses a ticking stopwatch as a part of its title card.

See also

External links

  • Open Source Physics Stop Watch Computer Model
  • NIST Recommended Practice Guide: Special Publication 960-12 Stopwatch and Timer Calibrations
  • Online Stopwatch Example
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