Monday, September 29, 2008

The Quake Catcher Network (QCN)

A couple of Laptop computer models such as the Mac Laptop (2005 or later) and
Lenovo Thinkpad running Windows have motion sensors similar to the iPhone, the iTouch and recently announced Google Phone.

Software available at QCN, the Quake Catcher Network, can "talk" to these models and read seismic activity at the laptop's location and transmit it to QCN.

From the Overview page at QCN:
Costs for this network will be low compared to traditional networks because the QCN will use 1) strong motion sensors (accelerometers) already internal to many laptops and 2) nearly identical low-cost universal serial bus (USB) accelerometers for use with desktops. The Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC!) provides a free, proven paradigm for involving the public in large-scale computational research projects.
The Quake Catcher Network (QCN) is in the beta testing stage.

Link here:
Physics Today had a blog about motion sensors:
Also of note is Tech Now! TV,
broadcast on NBC channel 4 on mondays at 4:00 a.m. to 4:30 a.m.

Webpage at

Today's broadcast showed how science has squeezed the stuff inside a TV and put it on One Very Small Chip that will easily fit inside your Smart Phone.

Watching the Tech Watchers

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