Using only tweets, scientists can now detect earthquakes in 29 seconds flat
Joyce Park stashed this in Science
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There are a lot of places prone to earthquakes that, it turns out, don't have good sensors. Twitter is filling the gap for the USGS.
Neat use of Twitter both for detecting earthquakes and false alarms:
This data also allows the USGS to improve their own detection system and acts as a secondary check, so if a sensor detects an earthquake in a densely populated area but no-one is tweeting about it, then the USGS knows it’s a false alarm.