Earthquakes, from the Wackshit Citizen Science Department

Lorna has an art studio about 60 feet from our wireless router. So mostly it works, and on 98 out of 100 days she streams iTunes music from my computer, and she paints with her music playing.

But one day a couple weeks ago, the music would.not.stop.skipping. 3 hours of it. We reset all the routers, looked for secret settings in the firmware, tried to move things around.

"Rebuffering..." declared iTunes. And "rebuffering..." And "rebuffering..."

Finally, Lorna got fed up, bad mood, can't paint without music. Decided I could, should, and would fix it, and walked across the yard.

Arriving in my office, she found me looking a little bit shaken. We'd just had an earthquake, a quite big one.

She hadn't felt it. That was funny.

And iTunes worked again.

But we didn't think much of this until a couple days later, when we were talking, and, do you think? They could have been related? Maybe EM interference? No way? But the timing?


So I wrote some scripts to download stuff continuously from her Mac, out back. Measure the bandwidth, graph it.

So! Here is our little internal toy monitor thing:

How weird that you can monitor my wireless remotely. But now you can. Just what you wanted.

Today, there was an earthquake, and we didn't notice much on our little monitor (screenshot nearby). But it wasn't a big earthquake, so there's still hope.

And maybe, one day, it will catch something, and besides, I have to keep everyone entertained somehow.

1 comment:

  1. After chatting with Lorna the other night I got curious and read some papers on EM interference affects on WiFi devices. It seems that there is plenty of evidence to support the EM interference theory. I'm going to try asking some of the JPL scientists that we work with about the occurrence ... see what they might have to say about it :)