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Earthquake clouds
October 30, 2005 12:57 PM   Subscribe

A retired Chinese chemist whose daughter is a PhD student at Caltech, regularly posts his earthquake predictions on his website. He claims to have successfully predicted the Bam earthquake in 2003, the Indonesian earthquake in 2004, the Pakistan earthquake in 2005 and numerous others by identifying earthquake clouds in satellite images supposedly caused by stress and friction acting on underground water. Oh and Southern California? Brace yourself. You are heading for a 7.0 plus quake on or before February 3rd, 2006.
posted by DirtyCreature (24 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
So glancing through his (admittedly hard to read webpage), his theories of earthquake prediction are based on observing cloud patterns in the area?

I don't buy it.

He also offers a rather harsh critique of other methods that the American government apparently "wastes millions of dollars" on. It's all relative I suppose.

For some other interesting EQ prediction attempts: Dr. Keilis-Borok's method showed some interesting promise and initial results.
posted by RockBandit at 1:07 PM on October 30, 2005


Art? Art Bell, is that you?
posted by keswick at 1:18 PM on October 30, 2005


Here is the wayback machine archives of his site. I'm trying to tell whether any of his "predictions" were actually accurate before the fact.
posted by jam_pony at 1:19 PM on October 30, 2005


If you play the cloud animations backwords, secret messages can be heard.
posted by sharksandwich at 1:20 PM on October 30, 2005


According to Art Bell and Coast to Coast, we're all already dead about 10x over, now. And Planet X is on the move...

Still, I remain cautiously optimistic. Amazing, isn't it?

I will be tuning in for the annual "Ghost to Ghost" program, however.
posted by Kloryne at 1:23 PM on October 30, 2005


daughter is a PhD student at Caltech

so?
posted by grouse at 1:25 PM on October 30, 2005


I'm trying to tell whether any of his "predictions" were actually accurate before the fact.

Oh most of them were all correct. No question about that. He even timestamps and authenticates some of his predictions on his site. What I have questions about relates to probabilities. locations and magnitudes.

daughter is a PhD student at Caltech

Try reading the site. So he gets access to live quality data.
posted by DirtyCreature at 1:27 PM on October 30, 2005


On another note, this article in the recent PNAS (subscription required) describes the results of a simulation of the Bay Area fault system and the earthquake probabilities that can be approximated with it. The authors include this statement at the end:

"There exists a 5% chance of an earthquake with magnitude m ≥ 7.0 occurring on the San Andreas fault near San Francisco before 2009 and a 55% chance by 2054. "
posted by epugachev at 1:42 PM on October 30, 2005


You are an endless repository of unfounded nutty claims and shrill defenses for those claims.

1, 2.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:21 PM on October 30, 2005


Metafilter: An endless repository of unfounded nutty claims and shrill defenses for those claims.
posted by emelenjr at 2:29 PM on October 30, 2005


At any particular time there are probably several thousand kooks publicly claiming unique prognosticative abilities relating to weather, earthquakes, and celebrity deaths.

By simple probability, several dozen of these kooks will be able to claim a reasonablly long run of successful past guesses at any particular time.

The analogy of getting a thousand people together to shout "HIGHER!" or "LOWER!" for coin flips comes to mind. Do this a while and pretty soon you're going to have ten people left who have made the right prediction several dozen times. Are those ten people "experts"?
posted by meehawl at 2:37 PM on October 30, 2005


You are an endless repository of unfounded nutty claims and shrill defenses for those claims.

Still hurting about Sniffex? I notice it up 160% still.

And you are a champion of petty self interest who pays his $5 and contributes nothing.
Oh and try not to stay up too late after beddy weddy time, k?.


By simple probability, several dozen of these kooks will be able to claim a reasonablly long run of successful past guesses at any particular time.

Agreed. Doesn't mean the theory doesn't have anything though. And this time he is laying his credibility on the line with a 6.6 prediction in a highly monitored area. I notice also that he just moved out of town for this period.
posted by DirtyCreature at 2:43 PM on October 30, 2005


"Metafilter: An endless repository of unfounded nutty claims and shrill defenses for those claims."

might be a bit long for a tag line. how about "Metafilter: profoundly nutty"
posted by muppetboy at 2:50 PM on October 30, 2005


I notice also that he just moved out of town for this period.

The Great Disappointment
posted by meehawl at 3:02 PM on October 30, 2005


I want to market a brand of mixed nuts that has the slogan "profoundly nutty"

Be like called.. Zen Peanuts or something. Zennuts!
posted by TwelveTwo at 3:28 PM on October 30, 2005


and contributes nothing

Uh, no.
posted by mediareport at 3:38 PM on October 30, 2005


"The Internet: An endless repository of unfounded nutty claims and shrill defenses for those claims."
posted by jscott at 4:52 PM on October 30, 2005


This fellow has predictive powers of extraordinary magnitude. I may have to throw out my magic eight ball.
posted by euphorb at 5:03 PM on October 30, 2005


He's a Manley Hubbell in training.
posted by oonh at 5:47 PM on October 30, 2005


When reading about earthquake predictions it is always wise to bear in mind the surprising number of small earthquakes that happen each year.
posted by edd at 1:34 AM on October 31, 2005


a 55% chance [of an earthquake with magnitude m ≥ 7.0 occurring on the San Andreas fault near San Francisco] by 2054.

Well shit, I could have predicted that!
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 3:04 AM on October 31, 2005


...on or before February 3rd, 2006

Well, duh! That is the 47th anniversary of the death of Charles Hardin Holley.
posted by geekyguy at 3:55 AM on October 31, 2005


words
posted by DirtyCreature at 2:43 PM PST on October 30


You are strangely, suspiciously defensive of spammers and others who use duplicity and fraud to promote their own financial interest.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 5:20 AM on October 31, 2005


gotta love Schizophrenia + WWW
posted by rubin at 9:55 AM on October 31, 2005


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