Using technology to track Sandy
People are calling it the perfect storm. Hurricane Sandy is just starting its major assault on the East Coast today. The worst effects, especially for Canadians, will be overnight tonight, according to officials. How are we using technology to survey the event?
Google has created a hurricane tracking map, compiled from its own data, along with information from the National Hurricane Centre and others. For up to date information about the event's progress, check out NOAA, which is monitoring the situation constantly.
There are several webcams available from which you can see the storm, assuming that they stay out under the combination of heavy traffic, and heavy weather.
A windmap from the National Digital Forecast Database shows the extent of the Hurricane's force, and also makes for a beautiful piece of art.
And those who want to keep an eye on the early effects of the storm can look here, and see a selection of pictures showing totally abandoned transport sites.
As always, social media is being used by people who aren't checking the facts. There are a series of faith photographs of the hurricane in circulating online. They may make for stunning imagery, but they are entirely imagined.
What will the hurricane mean for computing users? Johns Hopkins engineer Seth Guikema predicts that over 10 million people could lose power. In the meantime, data centres are battening down the hatches, in a bid to avoid being taken down by the storm. This will be a good test for many companies' business continuity strategies. Will sites stay up throughout the hurricane, or will unprepared firms see a disruption in service? We'll know more in the aftermath of the storm's landing tomorrow.
Danny Bradbury, MSN Tech & Gadgets