Technology in an Earthquake

April 5th, 2010 by Brian Leave a reply »

Yesterday Baja, California had a 6.9/7.2 earthquake. Friends of mine in the Los Angeles area said on Facebook it was one of the longest ones they had experienced.

In my house in Arizona we felt the quake.

At first I thought I was just queasy from over-eating at lunch. I then saw a picture frame in my living room swaying back and forth. I heard a rumble and wondered if a large truck was idling in the alley. My brain finally clicked that an earthquake was under way. I sent out a status update to Twitter.

Once the motion stopped, my phone got an influx of text messages. Other friends in the Valley were also messaging about the quake.

Within five minutes of the quake I was able to visit the US Geological Survey site and get an update on the magnitude and location, down to the GPS coordinates.

Traditional news outlets on regular air TV updated a few hours later.

We just felt tremors – imagine if we were in the epicenter and it had been more violent. It’s another sign of why we need a worldwide network of mobile devices.

The USGS site has a place to sign up for their earthquake newsletter. We’d like to get the e-mails before the quakes happen.


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