Watches and TarotCards

Watches and TarotCards

The Quartz Revolution

While electrically driven clocks had been used in observatories since the 1930s, and experiments had been made with electrically driven wristwatches, it was the quartz technology that came up in the late 1960s and early 1970s that marked the beginning of a new era. Now, it was possible to achieve daily rates of one second or less in a wristwatch with a rather cheap technology that could be produced in enormous numbers. A split-seconds chronograph, an alarm, a perpetual calendar, complications that had been the pride of watchmakers for centuries, now only required some additional instructions in the chip that controlled the watch.
The social impact of this new technology on the Swiss watch industry was enormous. Suddenly, watchmakers became superfluous - all that was required was an occasional change of the battery, and if the movement had a serious flaw, it was replaced by another one (if you didn't prefer to simply throw away the watch and get a new one).
The wristwatch, formerly a prestigious gift and an item that you cared for, became an article that was about as exciting as a pocket comb. If it didn't work any more, you threw it away.