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July 08 2011

Visualization of the Week: Twitter's Global Pulse

This post is part of a new series exploring visualizations. Some weeks we'll point the way to intriguing examples we find in our web travels. Other times we'll dive into our own datasets and imagery. We're always looking for leads, so please drop us a line if there's a visualization you think we should know about.

Although not the record-breaking event for Tweets per second, the 9.0 magnitude earthquake that struck Japan in March caused a massive spike in activity on Twitter as news of the quake and the subsequent tsunami spread. Twitter has released two visualizations that highlight the volume of tweets, as well as the ways in which news (Tweets and retweets in this case) spread globally.

The first visualization (above) focuses on what Twitter describes as "personal messages" as people from Japan reached out immediately after the earthquake. Twitter says it experienced a 500% increase in Tweets emanating from Japan in this time period, and the video shows the volume of @replies into and out of Japan in the hour prior to and then following the quake. Replies to users in Japan are shown in pink and messages from Japan are shown in yellow.

The second visualization (below) depicts worldwide retweets of Tweets originating in Japan for the hour after the earthquake. In this case, the original tweets are in red and retweets are in green.

These visualizations help demonstrate Twitter's power to distribute messages globally. By providing a video, rather than just a static graph, the visualizations also demonstrate the speed with which those messages are spread.

Both visualizations were created by Twitter's Miguel Rios.

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April 14 2011

Sponsored post
Today's Yomiuri piece on future quake risk: (JP) mirrors last week's Scientific American article: (EN)
Twitter / Mulboyne: Today's Yomiuri piece on f ...
Tsunami [by the March 11 earthquake] hit more than 100 designated evacuation sites
Twitter / The Japan Times : Tsunami hit more than 100 ...

April 07 2011 Erbeben der Stärke 7.1 vor der Küste Japans

Um 16:16 Uhr gab es wieder ein schweres Erdbeben vor Sendai, in dem Gebiet wo es schon so viele Erdbeben gab. Es sah erst aus als würden die Erdbeben, die es ohne Unterbrechung jeden Tag vor der Küste Japans gab so langsam aufhören, doch dies war nur ein Trugschluss. Das USGS meldet eine 7.1 auf der Richterskala. Das Erdbeben war direkt vor der nahen Küste.

Vor Sendai gab es wieder ein kräftiges Erdbeben. Die letzten Tage (blau) wurde es ruhiger. Dann das jetzt.
Sendai und Fukushima sind direkt im näheren Umfeld des Erdbeben gewesen.

Reposted fromgeoblogger geoblogger

April 02 2011

Play fullscreen
What Is Japan's Nuclear Worst Case Scenario?
Bob Alvarez: Many factors could still cause a "worst case" nuclear event in Japan
Views: 259
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Time: 12:33 More in News & Politics
7136 73f5


This is Hideaki Akaiwa. When the Tsunami hit his home town of Ishinomaki, Hideaki was at work. Realising his wife was trapped in their home, he ignored the advice of professionals, who told him to wait for the army to arrive to provide search and rescue.

Instead he found some scuba gear, jumped in the raging torrent - dodging cars, houses and other debris being dragged around by the powerful current, any of which could have killed him instantly - and navigated the now submerged streets in pitch dark, freezing water until he found his house. Swimming inside, he discovered his wife alive on the upper level with only a small amount of breathing room, and sharing his resperator, pulled her out to safety.

If he had waited for the army, his wife of 20 years would be dead.

Oh, and if that’s not enough badassery for one lifetime, Hideaki realised his mother was also unaccounted for, so jumped back in the water and managed to save her life also. Since then Hideaki enters the water everyday on a one man search and rescue mission, saving countless lives and proving that two natural disasters in a single day, and insurmountable odds can’t stand in the way of love. This man is my hero.

March 17 2011

Japan: Citizen Videos of the Earthquake

Written by Solana Larsen

This post is part of our special coverage on the Japan Earthquake 2011.

One has to admire a person with the wits to keep a video camera turned on while the ground is shaking beneath them. Citizen videos recorded Friday, March 11 during the earthquake and tsunami that caused mass devastation in many parts of Japan are all over YouTube. Among the many shared online, here are just a few.

The day of the big quake

Staffers at a supermarket in Tokyo hold up the shelves during a quake that lasted longer than a minute.

As the earthquake shakes a house, the people inside rush to the street.

These people watch a tsunami engulf Iioka Port in Chiba Prefecture from higher ground.

At Shinjuku station in Tokyo, on March 11, these were people who couldn't get home after the quake.

Two days later

After the quake, a man surveyed the damage in Iioka, Chiba Prefecture on March 13th and said: “It's like the wave passed through town.”

This post is part of our special coverage on the Japan Earthquake 2011.

Tomomi Sasaki translated from Japanese.

March 16 2011

Developer Week in Review

In a departure from the normally frivolous tone of this intro paragraph, I'd like to extend best wishes to the Japanese people as they deal with their numerous crises. Here's hoping things start to go better soon.

The planet does continue to turn (if on a slightly different axis than a week ago), so here's what happened in the developer world this week.

Mobile insecurity

For years, Apple aficionados have taken pot shots at the (in)security of the Windows platform. But the recent Pwn2Own contest shows that Apple has some problems of their own. During the contest, white-hats were able to break security on both an iPhone and a Blackberry by exploiting a common vulnerability in WebKit.

No one attempted to break into a Windows Mobile 7 or Android phone, which doesn't necessarily mean they're more secure, they just weren't targeted this time around. In any event, it highlights the increasing frequency with which mobile devices are being targeted for attacks.

Twitter gives third-party developers the bird

Most companies go out of their way to court third-party applications that want to integrate into their product. Google certainly has a ton of public APIs, as does Amazon, etc. But Twitter has decided that they should be the keeper of the one true Twitter client vision, and has shut the door on any new clients that wish to use the Twitter content.

Mashups are one of the most powerful features of the Web 2.0 biome, and Twitter has always been a juicy source of (sometimes geotagged) real-time data about what is happening in the world. By closing off their data stream from anyone but their own developers, Twitter is both doing a disservice to the world, and potentially shooting themselves in the foot by preventing compelling new applications from being developed.

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About that self-healing part ...

When the ARPAnet (the Internet's ancestor) was designed, one of the main features was that it could automatically route around damaged segments (handy for a military network in times of war.) However, the recent earthquake has shown just how far we've strayed from that vision. Because of static routings hardwired into the network due to business arrangements between network providers, Internet service to and from Asia took a major hit when some key trans-pacific cables were damaged.

Rather than automatically routing around the problem, engineers had to step in and set up new manual routings to try and alleviate the disconnect. It may have only taken a few hours or a day, but in an increasingly Internet-dependent world, even a few hours can be devastating, especially in an emergency when communications are at a premium.

Got news?

If you have some juicy news, please send tips or leads here.


May 26 2010

Lautlose Migration in die Dominikanische Republik

Von Moises Saab, Havanna- prensa latina | NPLA-poonal |- Seit dem verheerenden Erdbeben im Januar 2010 haben rund 200.000 HaitianerInnen ihre Habseligkeiten gepackt und sind in die benachbarte Dominikanische Republik ausgewandert, erklärte Ramón Flores, Bera- ter des dortigen Wirtschaftsministeriums. Laut Flores seien diese Zahlen von der UNO zur Auswertung gesammelt worden.

Die dominikanischen Behörden befürchten eine Masseneinwanderung. Nach ihren Angaben würden derzeit mehr als eine Millionen BürgerInnen des Nachbarlandes "illegal" in ihrem Gebiet wohnen.

Der Experte warnte, dass die Verzögerung einer Lösung der angehäuften gravierenden Probleme des Nachbarlandes und mehr noch die Folgebeben große Auswirkungen auf die dominikanische Gesellschaft haben könnten.

Flores erwähnte Probleme bei der Organisierung der Weltfinanzierungshilfe für Haiti und wies auf die Dringlichkeit hin, bald mit den Wiederaufbauprogrammen zu beginnen. Diese Themen würden in einer Konferenz, die für nächsten Juni in der Hauptstadt einberufen wurde, besprochen werden.

Zwar sei die dominikanische Hilfe aus menschlicher Solidarität entschieden worden, bei näherer Betrachtung könnte dies jedoch auch aus Zweckmäßigkeit geschehen sein, erklärte Flores und warnte vor der Wirkung, welche die Ereignisse im westlichen Nachbarland auf sein Land hätten.

Dominikanische Medien drückten ihre Besorgnis über die haitianische Präsenz aus und betrachten diese als unhaltbare Bürde für die Wirtschaft, die geprägt sei von der Weltwirtschaftskrise, Unterentwicklung und Unsicherheit in Bildungseinrichtungen sowie dem öffentlichem Gesundheitswesen.

Dennoch erinnern andere MedienvertreterInnen daran, dass die illegalisierten HaitianerInnen die Hauptmasse billiger Arbeitskräfte in den ländlichen Gebieten ausmachen würden. Zudem würden sie in den städtischen Gebieten Arbeiten ausführen, die von den dominikanischen BürgerInnen verschmäht würden.

Quelle: – NPLA-poonal – Mit freundlicher Genehmigung der Redaktion von NPLA. Herzlichen Dank Dafür !

Partnerseiten des

NPLA-poonal | Portal | Quetzal | ila | Lateinamerika Nachrichten

Peter Djordjevic vom Womblog [Worte oder mehr]

Reposted fromZaphod Zaphod

April 26 2010


March 12 2010

Department of Homeland Security

11 March 2010

Yesterday the Department of Homeland Security has received the prevention from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory about the occurred shift of Earth’s figure axis:

The recent Chilean earthquake shifted the axis by approximately three inches and shortened the length of a day by 1.26 microseconds. According to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory the displacement of Earth’s axis will cause natural disasters on the Eastern coast of the USA including Florida, Georgia, South and North Carolina.

In this connection the DHS has made a decision to prepare for general evacuation from the specified area. The population of the region should be ready for evacuation. It is necessary collect valuable possessions, documents, things of first necessity, and wait for the announcement.

In order to prevent panic among the population DHS asks to stay calm and follow the official instructions listed below:[lol]

U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528

— Awsome phising attempt
Reposted fromdeepthought deepthought

March 02 2010

January 17 2010

Haiti Aid myths


I’ve seen alot of twittering and facebooking and status updating about what companies are doing for Haiti. But learn you this mang, they aren’t all true (duh)


UPS will ship any package under 50lbs to Haiti for free

Jetblue and American Airlines are flying doctors and nurses to Haiti for free

Phone companies (and facebook) have agreed to donate $.25 every time a text message is forwarded.


You can donate $10 to redcross relief by texting ‘Haiti’ to 90999

T-Mobile is allowing people to phone Haiti without being charged for international calls.

In conclusion, I know we all mean well but check yoself (and snopes) and try not to keep that misinformation fire burnin yo!

Reposted fromtimedesk timedesk

January 13 2010


DemocracyNow 2010-13-01: Haiti Devastated by Largest Earthquake in 200 Years, Thousands Feared Dead


Haiti has been devastated by a massive 7.0-magnitude earthquake, the largest to strike the Caribbean nation in more than two centuries. Buildings have collapsed. Fires rage in the streets. The extent of the disaster is still unknown, but there are fears thousands of people may have died and tens of thousands homeless. We get the latest on Haiti, a country rocked by natural as well as political crises. We speak with journalist Kim Ives of Haiti Liberté and Haitian American novelist Edwidge Danticat, her family at the epicenter of the quake. [includes rush transcript]




a) first messages incl. a footage showing the dust directly after the earthquake hit by @globalvoices - also here on - permalink

b) a general link collection concerning the situation in Haiti by @globalvoices via twitter:

@globalvoices: Our page aggregating coverage of the Haiti earthquake is now up at

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