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March 19, 2011

Anatomy of an 9.0 earthquake: Sendai, Japan — March 11, 2011

From Ronni Grapenthin's University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute website:


The movie [top; captioned "Cumulative displacements"] shows the displacements as well as body and surface waves created by the M9.0 and M7.9 earthquakes in Japan on March 11, 2011 between 05:30-06:30 UTC.

Each dot/arrow represents a continuous high-precision GPS station, of which more than 1,200 are distributed throughout Japan in a network called GEONET.

This is an absolutely unique instrumentation density found nowhere else on the world. I visualized and postprocessd the 30-second positioning solution provided by the ARIA team (Preliminary GPS time series provided by the ARIA team at JPL and Caltech. All original GEONET RINEX data provided to Caltech by the Geospatial Information Authority [GSI] of Japan.).


The blue vectors show horizontal displacements, meaning that the direction of the vector on the plot actually points in the direction of motion/displacement.

The red vectors show vertical displacements, which are either up or down from the GPS site's initial position as indicated by the arrowhead.

The base of all arrows denotes the location of the GPS site.

All displacements shown are with respect to the first measurement of the UTC day 2011-March-11.

What you see is both dynamic displacement and static displacement, as well as the difference of an order of magnitude in an earthquake in terms of energy release and affected region.

The dynamic displacement is composed of at least three components (very preliminary visual analysis):

  • the actual slip of the M9.0 earthquake occuring at least in frames 05:47:30-05:49:00
  • a wave inducing small displacements that travels at about 8.6 +/- x km/s (likely: Body wave)
  • a wave inducing large displacements that travels at about 4.8 +/- x km/s (likely: Surface wave)


Caption for the movie below:

"M9.0 co-seismic removed from 05:55:30 UTC onwards by subtracting 05:55:00 displacement field."

March 19, 2011 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Fortune Cookie Stool


A 2008 design by Po Shun Leong for Tendo Furniture Design Concours in Japan.


He wrote, "I experimented with folding paper to create the 3-D shape, inspired by the shape of fortune cookies and Yanagi's Butterfly Stool. It is made from a single piece of flat plywood."


Contact the designer directly: poshun@poshunleong.com

[via my7475 and mocoloco]

March 19, 2011 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Consensus-cloud: "Books everyone should read"


From Information is Beautiful's David McCandless: "Do 'Top 100 Books' polls and charts agree on a set of classics? I scraped the results of over 15 notable book polls, reader surveys and top 100s. Both popular and high-brow. They included all Pulitzer Prize winners, Desert Island Discs choices from recent years, Oprah's Book Club lists and, of course, The Guardian's Top 100 Books of All Time. A simple frequency analysis of the gathered titles gives us a neat 'consensus cloud' visualisation of the most mentioned book titles across the polls. Do you agree with the consensus?"

Back story here.

March 19, 2011 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Spider-Man Computer Sitter




[via 7Gadgets]

March 19, 2011 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

A message from Joe Peach


It came in via email last evening:


Just out of curiosity, I wonder how many of your "true" subscribers are Mac or Windows.

You always describe the latest Mac/Apple stuff, but rarely — if ever — do a Windows thing.
I wonder how many of your fans feel alienated seeing a constant bombardment of Mac/Apple stuff?
Hey, it's your blog, if your master plan include being Mac/Apple friendly only, more power to you.
But how many "could have been subscribers" left because of this bias?
Please don't take this wrong, you could marry Steve Jobs and I would still be a subscriber ;-)


You know, he's right.

As soon as I read his email the truth of it hit home.

A decisive majority of the world has no truck with Mac/Apple and despises fanboys.

So I'm going to ease up on the Mac/Apple stuff and try to be less provincial in my posts.

Thanks, Joe.

March 19, 2011 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack

Octopus Ring


Designed by Antonio Palladino.

From Sea of Shoes: "This octopus ring is not mine! Mine is silver, my mom has one in gold. Sometimes we trade. I cannot reiterate enough how much pleasure it gives me to wear my favorite animal on my finger — its glistening jointed tentacles come to life with every twitch of my finger."

[via What Alice Found]

March 19, 2011 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A Visual Guide to Eggs


[via Flowing Data and culinaut]

March 19, 2011 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Spoon Tongs


That's different.

"Spring-loaded 12" handle with locking mechanism allows you to switch easily between tong and spoon modes."


Non-scratch silicone and plastic.

Heat-resistant to 400°F (204°C).




[via Bem Legaus!]

March 19, 2011 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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