Laptops can detect earthquakes

At least some laptops have sensors detecting rapid movement so that the hard disk can be protected from damage. With some programming, those same sensors can be used to detect natural shaking and thus in fact even incoming earthquakes. Stanford scientists have initiated a “Quake-Catcher Network” to work with laptops in gathering data useful in predicting this danger. Here is the link:

qcn.stanford.edu/

And they can differentiate between an earthquake and me tapping my foot on the table leg? :shrug:

They actually might, if the sensors were sensitive enough and the software had some samples to compare, but I suppose they rely on similar signals coming from neighbouring places. Say, if all connected laptops from a given neighbourhood detect such movement, chances are something’s coming.

Why not rely on the equipment that has been installed specifically for seismic monitoring? The ones that don’t move around and have to differentiate between leg tapping and an earthquake?

Say, if all connected laptops from a given neighbourhood detect such movement, chances are something’s coming.

If all connected laptops detect a seismic movement, something isn’t coming - its already there. The predictive value of this seems to me to be about zero.

Peace

Tim

It’s conceivable that software that could separate daily vibration from other sources, could possibly pick up pre-earthquake tremors that might not be detected otherwise.

It’s worth looking at.

The quakes I have been in (the big ones in NorCal and Socal a couple decades ago) I am quite sure any laptop could detect. So could pretty much any object on top of another though, because it would no longer be on top of that object.

This is neato though! I do hope it proves useful.

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