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Crowd-Sourced Radiation Maps In Asia and US

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the zombies-are-crowdsourced-radiation-indicators dept.

Japan 99

kkleiner writes "In the past few weeks, several crowd-sourced radiation maps have arisen that attempt to give up to the minute looks at the threat level in the areas most likely to be affected by a catastrophe: Japan, Asia, and the US. These maps, available to the public for free online, are a timely example of how user-enabled systems are revolutionizing the way we solve problems. Tracking radiation levels is just the beginning. This is a preview of how accelerating technologies will allow us to monitor anything, anywhere, in realtime."

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99 comments

Used for good here but... (1)

AndyAndyAndyAndy (967043) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603626)

...slippery slope... something about smartphones... standard fud... etc. etc.

Re:Used for good here but... (3, Insightful)

AndyAndyAndyAndy (967043) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603680)

Moreover, this really isn't "monitoring anything, [...] in realtime." The map they set up [rdtn.org] requires manual, voluntary data input. Open to abuse, and certainly not crowd-sourcing in the sense of remote monitoring.

Re:Used for good here but... (3, Insightful)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603986)

And the net effect will be a whole lot of fear mongering resulting from a few pranksters who'll probably think that's funny as hell.

Like before [japanprobe.com]

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

Sir_Sri (199544) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604876)

or a bunch of people having access to data they do not understand, and inducing panic. Does a yellow circle mean I need to be cautious about my radiation exposure? I don't have heath care and can't afford cancer, maybe should wall myself up. The government isn't telling me why my number (e.g. 34) is nearly twice as high as someone else (18), that sounds really bad.

yes it's cool, you can crowdsource data. But data without any real understanding of what it means, or presented in such a way as to be alarmist, or even just presented badly can do more harm than good.

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 3 years ago | (#35609332)

That's probably why the article shows the XKCD radiation chart.

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35610432)

That's probably why the article shows the XKCD radiation chart.

Which will mean almost nothing to 99% of people seeing it. There must be a simpler way of presenting that information.

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

jrumney (197329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35607140)

It's crowd sourcing in that abuse is relatively easy to spot if it is just one claim in a crowd of many that do not agree. Like the guy in Mito, Japan who is reading over 2000 microsieverts, when everyone around him is getting 0.4 or less.

Re:Used for good here but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35609286)

Yes, but much of the data that map is using is realtime data pulled from Pachube.com - which IS monitoring realtime radiation data from hundreds of feeds set up by Pachube users, which includes webscraping official data and networked geiger counters and manually entered data and hacked devices. There's a lot more about the infrastructure behind the maps (and some other more useful maps) here: http://community.pachube.com/node/611

Re:Used for good here but... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603896)

Well, for once we see that radiation level, even in Tokyo and closer, is lower than in the UK's natural background. So, will that make the news? Nope. News is just FUD FUD FUD!! That's how they get viewers.

And try not to get natural background radiation in Ramsar,Iran - that is 30uS/h (mSv/yr), not the "pathetic" 0.2uS/h in Japan "new ground zero" (as BBC put it). And people in Ramsar supposedly have less cancer than "average westerner".. Maybe cancer is more caused by our environmental pollution from coal, plastics and other crap (pesticides, herbicides we *eat* every day) than low dose radiation.

Re:Used for good here but... (2)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604920)

Contrary to the prevailing meme here, I've been a little surprised how measured and non-alarmist news coverage has been. I don't think one major news outlet in the US has failed to report that there's no risk in the US, and that the only Japanese who can expect to be severely harmed by radiation, so far, are the workers fighting to control the disaster. Beyond that, I'm sorry, but this radiation leak is still a newsworthy event. The tap water in Japan's water is deemed too polluted for infants to drink. It's not as if nothing bad happened.

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605058)

Severely harmed? Not likely. 16 workers so far have received 100-200 millisieverts of radiation. 100 millisieverts gives you an expected increase in cancer incidence, lifetime, of .1%. No lower dose has been shown to raise cancer rates. So effectively, The radiation release is currently estimate at a 1.6% chance of causing one cancer.

Re:Used for good here but... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605374)

There is most likely 20,000 people dead because of the earthquake and tsunami.

The number of people that will most likely die due to the radiation is 0-5.

Even on slashdot, there were headlines similar to "Japan. Meltdown tsunami. 20,000 dead". Ridicules to the extreme. Then we have Nancy Grace talking bullshit alluding that radiation cloud will kill people in the US.

For facts, the water is "too polluted" to drink for infants because Japan's level for water is something along the lines of 2000Bq/m3. How much is that? Since Iodine-131 has halflife of 8d, the amount is about 768,000 atoms of I-131 in 1,000 liters of water. Do you have any idea how tiny amount that is? 1 gram of Iodine is about 4,600,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms. How did it get there? From the air and any rainfall.

And vast majority of this evil iodine will be gone in next few days. If people could measure extreme toxins at these levels, you would find them everywhere, including stuff that is vastly more potent and dangerous than any radiation (think hormone mimicking plastics turning men into "men" that are quickly becoming sterile)

I lived in areas that were affected by Chernobyl and no one gave any hints of what to do, what not to do. They didn't even say "stay indoors" and people around Chernobyl weren't evacuated for 2 days. What Japan is doing is precisely what they should be doing. So how is water in Tokyo? It's just fine - toddlers and pregnant women should take precaution as an exercise in safety, but that's it. Even if all the babies drink the water, they are more likely to get run over by a bus than have any consequences from the water. Hell, I'm not certain how safe the bottled water with its dissolved plastics is anyway.

Re:Used for good here but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35608314)

Forgot to multiply the number of seconds/hour. So I-131 atoms for 2000Bq/m3 is 2,700,000,000 vs. 4,600,000,000,000,000,000,000 atoms per gram. Since water is H2O so has mas of 18u, that means the concentration is about 1 part per 10,000,000,000,000,000,000, or 1 part per 10 quintillions. If it wasn't for the radiation detectors that can detect individual atoms, no chemical test could find concentrations these low (best ones tend to detect 1 part per billion (1,000,000,000). The comparison would be like you lifting a rock on Earth and then measuring the resulting wobble of Earth's orbit!

I hope with these numbers put things in perpective. Also, see radiation inside human body,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Background_radiation#Radiation_inside_the_human_body

Excluding internal contamination by external radioactive material, the largest component of internal radiation exposure from biologically functional components of the human body is from potassium-40. The decay of about 4,000 nuclei of 40K per second[16] makes potassium the largest source of radiation in terms of number of decaying atoms. The energy of beta particles produced by 40K is also about 10 times more powerful than the beta particles from 14C decay. There are about 1,200 beta particles per second produced by the decay of 14C. However, a 14C atom is in the genetic information of about half the cells, while potassium is not a component of DNA. The decay of a 14C atom inside DNA in one person happens about 50 times per second, changing a carbon atom to one of nitrogen.[17]

Bq == decay per second

Regarding the lower fertility of men, see following for sources,
http://www.ourstolenfuture.org/NewScience/reproduction/sperm/humansperm.htm

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35610458)

we see that radiation level, even in Tokyo and closer, is lower than in the UK's natural background.

That's probably because of all the leaky UK nuclear reactors.
>> ducks and runs for cover

Re:Used for good here but... (1)

Henk Poley (308046) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604030)

What has smartphones to do with this subject?

I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603636)

I don't want to die from poisoning...

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

Henk Poley (308046) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604012)

It is primarily about Iodine 131, that escapes from the heated fuel assemblies through tiny cracks, and is water soluble.

- Just wash the food, ~80% will wash off without much effort.
- The japanese government is tracking their food and will reject what gives off too high a dose.
- If it can wait, just don't eat fresh food from the vicinity of the reactor. Half life of Iodine-131 is 8 days. So after two weeks ~75% is gone. Still great for conserved food, or even cargo shipped.
- When you are older (> 25y or so) the impact of I-131 is much lower, since your thyroid doesn't grow (that much).

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604072)

- If it can wait, just don't eat fresh food from the vicinity of the reactor. Half life of Iodine-131 is 8 days. So after two weeks ~75% is gone.

Also, fresh meat is pretty bad after 2 weeks so you shouldn't eat it. ;)

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35606876)

Yes, but what does Iodine 131 decays too? Can something decay to another radioactive material?

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

mirix (1649853) | more than 3 years ago | (#35607638)

Things can [wikimedia.org] and often do decay to other radioactive elements; However 131I decays to 131Xe which is stable.

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608080)

So freeze it.

Re:I wouldn't eat food right now (1)

gumbi west (610122) | more than 3 years ago | (#35607648)

In the US, when they try to figure out if a particular food stuff is safe for consumption, they assume that you are washing it. But, they also assume that you are the maximally affected individual: a baby who eats nothing but that food stuff.

Oh my fucking god. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603676)

I must resist the urge to start a business selling lead underwear to panicky people.

I must resist the urge to start a business selling lead underwear to panicky people.

I'll write that one hundred billion times on my sharks.

Re:Oh my fucking god. (4, Funny)

AndyAndyAndyAndy (967043) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604016)

What about lead panties for the whole Tokyo vending machine market?

Oooh, such a tough one.

Re:Oh my fucking god. (1)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605684)

Sorry, lead-panty-making facilities were exhausted around the time of the porn-scanner TSA hype (justified hype, mind you, but I can't think of the neutrally-connotative term right now).

You must be new here ... (1)

Kittenman (971447) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605718)

1: Wait for radiation scare

2: Start business selling lead underwear to panicky people

3: PROFIT!!!

I've got a better one... (1)

denzacar (181829) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606366)

Pills with "lead extract" - to protect you from the inside. And since it is an extract, it is not poisonous.
Also, shampoos, soaps and detergents with same extract.

You know... like them hygiene products with pearls [walmart.com] and diamonds in 'em. [eurofoodimports.com]

Re:Oh my fucking god. (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608094)

If you give in to the urge, let me know. I'll get the chelation pills ready.

Chilling.. (1)

SuperCharlie (1068072) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603686)

This is a preview of how accelerating technologies will allow us to monitor anything, anywhere, in realtime.

Although to a degree I suppose this is already happening for the most part.

Fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603692)

This is a pretty lame attempt at a map :/ Color coded by submissions type instead of something useful (e.g. level or radiation??) and the format of the submissions is inconsistent... as are the units of measurement!! Very difficult to use... more confusing than helpful.

Re:Fail (1)

reub2000 (705806) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605328)

Exactly. How many mSv/hr are in a cpm?

Re:Fail (1)

mug funky (910186) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606752)

unfortunately i wouldn't trust any of the measures, as CPM is a subset of DPM (actual decays per minute), and depends on the calibration of the counter and distance/type of source.

DPM then needs to be converted to sieverts, which is a bit nightmarish as well.

it's telling that some of the units given are converted to grays, which i believe are specific to gamma rays, so there'd need to be a weight used depending on the percentages of fission products and their decay profiles before you could convert that to sieverts or DPM.

Re:Fail (1)

mirix (1649853) | more than 3 years ago | (#35607790)

Gray is like Sievert without a human-dose-equivalent quality multiplier. For full body gamma, beta, or xrays, 1Gy = 1Sv.

For alpha the multiplier is 20 fold iirc, and for emitted neutrons it varies.

So kinda seems to me the geigers should technically read Gy, because they aren't human. But since most of them can't do alpha, it doesn't matter, because gray = sievert in this case.

Re:Fail (1)

LandGator (625199) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608818)

The Sievert-Gray confersion factor is 1 for both gamma and beta, 20 for alpha, and averages 10 for neutrons.

FINALLY (2)

MetalliQaZ (539913) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603696)

I need more things to worry about right now. Why rely on some government regulatory body to monitor radiation when I could work myself up into a panic RIGHT NOW!

There is no escape. It's better not to know.

Re:FINALLY (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604664)

It's better not to know.

So, ignorance is strength? I wonder where I heard that before.

Re:FINALLY (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35610812)

It's better not to know.

So, ignorance is strength? I wonder where I heard that before.

If there was a way of predicting the exact time and day of your own death, would you want to know it?
For me, ignorance would certainly be better in that case.

Re:FINALLY (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35607552)

Or understand the data with the help of http://xkcd.com/radiation/ and have a better appreciation of how worthless "main stream" media is. A lot of the reports are near 100 nGy/h, roughly the extra radiation exposure you would get sleeping next to two women, so I think you are extra safe.

Re:FINALLY (1)

LandGator (625199) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608822)

Oh, noes, Charlie Sheen needs extra Tiger Blood to protect himself from the doses he gets from sleeping with three women!

Everything old is new again (1)

srussia (884021) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603704)

Crowdsourcing is just Conventional Wisdom 3.0 or Grapevine 2.0, depending on how you look at it.

Re:Everything old is new again (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603794)

Or, see my sig

Re:Everything old is new again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35606132)

Man of few words, eh?

Re:Everything old is new again (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608024)

Maybe

Re:Everything old is new again (1)

Xoblau (2017050) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606862)

Are we crowdsourcing EVERYTHING nowadays? Even Hedge Fund stock prediction [huffingtonpost.com] . My goodness!

But where's Japan's own measurement net? (1)

Henk Poley (308046) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603708)

That's all very cute, but where is the data from Japan's own nuclear measurement net? From what I've heard they have measurement nodes all over the place (like many countries), but instead of say Germany and The Netherlands, this data is not freely available?

Re:But where's Japan's own measurement net? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603938)

You mean these data from Japan's own nuclear measurement net [bousai.ne.jp] ? Don't strain yourself trying to find it; just piss and moan on the Internet until somebody gives you the link. Wouldn't want you to wear out your Googling fingers.

Re:But where's Japan's own measurement net? (0)

Henk Poley (308046) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604432)

No, they have more than 19 measurement points. Anyways, those 19 are included on a few of the aggregator maps.

Now go back to your troll cave.

Re:But where's Japan's own measurement net? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605456)

If you click on the prefecture as instructed to do so at the top of the map, you will get readings from multiple locations in each region, varying from half a dozen to two dozen measurement points per prefecture giving you a lot more measurements. The national map just gives you the highest reading from each prefecture.

Re:But where's Japan's own measurement net? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35608774)

Various ministries around Japan are taking measurements like this one:

http://www.mlit.go.jp/kowan/kowan_fr1_000041.html

http://www.mlit.go.jp/page/kanbo01_hy_001411.html

and this one

http://www.mext.go.jp/english/radioactivity_level/detail/1303962.html

US will not be affected by Japans reactor problems (4, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603712)

Hmm, what do they mean by 'in the areas most likely to be affected by a catastrophe: Japan, Asia, and the US.'?

Europe has a lot of nuclear reactors. So does Russia.

Do they mean the US is likely to be affected by Japan's current problem reactor site?

Hopefully folks who own a Geiger counter know enough to not be worried about it being a problem for the US. Is the author one of the overhyping idiots that think the 'higher' levels of radiation in Tokyo, which are still lower than those normally occurring in Denver or Mexico City, are a danger?

Re:US will not be affected by Japans reactor probl (1)

Monchanger (637670) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603822)

If you want overhyping, watch Nancy Grace [youtube.com]

Re:US will not be affected by Japans reactor probl (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604126)

To be fair, I was watching BBC America the other day and they were making out the iodine concentrations to be the apocalypse.

Most likely? (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603748)

in the areas most likely to be affected by a catastrophe: Japan, Asia, and the US

Is the US "most likely" to be affected by this?

I've sort of gotten the impression that the US was unlikely to be affected.

Is this just fear mongering?

Re:Most likely? (3, Informative)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603854)

Yes.

Yes, Most likely! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604240)

Inverse Square Ratio:
The US is far more likely due to our close
proximity to a very dense group of lawyers.
And:
Even denser juries.

Pathetic punctuation placed to torment those that care.

Re:Most likely? (1)

kwerle (39371) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604984)

Is the US "most likely" to be affected by this?

Yes - if you count psychologically.

Re:Most likely? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605582)

It's fear mongering to sell their software; which looks singularly unimpressive.

Of course in the pure technical sense, yes the use will be effected, everyone will. And it will be a minuscule amount which shouldn't concern anyone who will live for less then 50,000 earth years.

Re:Most likely? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605740)

English lesson:

the areas most likely to be affected = out of the countries in the world Japan, Asia, and the US are more likely than eg antarctica to be affected

US was unlikely to be affected = US has a low chance of being affected

these statements are neither mutually exclusive nor contradictory

Let me add a bit to that summary. (3, Insightful)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603780)

Let me fix this for you:

Tracking radiation levels is just the beginning. This is a preview of how accelerating technologies will allow us to monitor anything, anywhere, in realtime."

Not to mention how we now have unprecedented ability to spread hysteria when there's nothing actively wrong!

Moving along. FTA:

Three days from concept to a working map that gives valuable and reliable data to anyone who wants it for free, and not a dollar was spent in its production. Amazing.

Wait, what? You mean nobody spent ANY time or money to get that data? It just magically appeared on servers? Poof!

Ah:

Their information is gathered from volunteer and official sources and embedded onto an adapted Google Map.

Time != free (even the time of a volunteer has value to that volunteer). Official sources are most definitely not an example of data available without cost -- it's just a question of who pays the cost and when. In actual dollars, at that -- not just volunteer hours.

While many of those wanting to track radiation levels after the Fukushima accident do so out of sympathy for Japanese citizens, let’s not ignore the fact that many others are simply worried about when dangerous radiation levels could show up in their own backyard.

Well, sure. Because at any second, ANY OF THOSE PLANTS COULD EXPLODE!

The problem with bloggers becoming the "new journalists" is that any sense of responsibility goes out the window in the race to get page hits.

This perhaps came across as unnecessarily irritable... but I'm a bit tired of the attention that the "nuclear scare" is getting, while the thousands of people killed in the friggin tsunami are just a footnote.

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603924)

Hysteria for the stupid maybe but I find it interesting. I like having the information available, it tends to help me in many often unrelated ways.

There have been so many times when I have been trying to do this or that and I have said "man, I just wish there was a public list of this information."

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (5, Insightful)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604224)

The problem with bloggers becoming the "new journalists" is that any sense of responsibility goes out the window in the race to get page hits.

the bloggers seem to have been doing a vastly better job of reporting on this than almost any major paper or news corp.

It's actually stunning how poor the reporting has been from the major news networks .

The somthingawful GBS topic on it outlined the situation clearly and explained it far far better than any news article, after reading it I was left agape thinking "why the fuck can't reuters explain the situation that well when some kneckbeard with time on his hands can"

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (3, Insightful)

ToasterMonkey (467067) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604798)

the bloggers seem to have been doing a vastly better job of reporting on this than almost any major paper or news corp.

It's actually stunning how poor the reporting has been from the major news networks .

The somthingawful GBS topic on it outlined the situation clearly and explained it far far better than any news article, after reading it I was left agape thinking "why the fuck can't reuters explain the situation that well when some kneckbeard with time on his hands can"

Umm.. the blog that started this discussion is outright fear mongering, and here's a quote from the nytimes that I think is informative and representative.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/25/world/asia/25japan.html?_r=1&hp [nytimes.com]

Japanâ(TM)s limits on iodine 131 are far lower than those of the International Atomic Energy Agency, measured in a unit called a becquerel. Japan says older children and adults should get no more than 300 becquerels per liter while the I.A.E.A. recommends a limit of 3,000 becquerels. Greg Webb, an I.A.E.A. spokesman in Vienna, said he could not immediately provide his agencyâ(TM)s recommendation for infants. The level that raised the alarm for infants on Wednesday was 120 becquerels; that had fallen to 79 on Thursday, according to the Tokyo city authorities.

I think that like radiation levels in Japan, quality of journalism is being discussed with complete disregard to scale.
Bloggers... blech.

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605648)

There are also quite a few blogs doing much worse than major news networks too. With the number of people that write blogs, including many people with professional experience in this area (or any other area) or simply others with free time and reading comprehension, it is not surprising that some well written blogs on the topic appeared. However, I don't think I would recommend someone should look for their information in blogs if it is a subject they are not familiar enough with to differentiate the well written blogs from the BS ones.

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605650)

Not really. The BBC is excellent, and CNN is really really good.

The news reports what's going on, it does not educate you as to what it means. So if you don't understand radiation, measurement, or nuclear power you can't expect the news to take time and fill the gaps in your education.

I would rather they made it more technical, and stopped trying to make it easy for the layperson. There are better source for education.

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35608810)

That's something that had been bothering me, too. You make an important distinction, but it's academic. The truth is that the quality of journalism varies within these massive news agencies, and they often omit key details which allow people to assume the worst about a particular situation, so whatever useful info is there just becomes FUD. It's not like they can't afford the space because these stories aren't printed on paper. The old way of writing a piece to be within 200/500/700/1000 words doesn't apply anymore. That's one journalistic convention that can be dropped. News should also take advantage of connectivity to educate people so they understand the news. To be fair to your post, BBC does include links to a variety of stories with background info, which I really like, though I wonder how many are actually clicking on those links.

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (2)

JohnnyBGod (1088549) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604272)

The problem with bloggers becoming the "new journalists" is that any sense of responsibility goes out the window in the race to get page hits.

Who said "real" journalists have any sense of responsibility in the race to get higher ratings? Just watch how the situation at Fukushima was covered in the news...

Re:Let me add a bit to that summary. (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604302)

Responsibility would imply reporting when it can result in actionable precautions. No reporting can bring back the thousands killed by the tsunami, but if there is any radiation danger (which there doesn't actually seem to be), reporting on that could save those who are paranoid enough to take it to heart. I didn't check my mail during the 2001 anthrax scare. One person died from unknown causes who was nowhere near a P.O. She was an old lady who probably caught it from contaminated mail. (Go google this if you don't believe me.) Maybe if she'd read scare stuff she would have stayed away from her mail like I did, and survived.

Reporting on dead victims isn't journalism, it's history.

so when amerigo got here 400+- yrs. ago.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35603824)

the reason that almost everybody (natives) here may have had to be killed, way back then, was because there were 'too many' people here already. there may even have been problems getting hotel rooms/takeout, stuff like that? like monkeys they are. springing up everywhere. unapproved breeding everywhere. now wonder we had to invent unnatural/premature death on a wholesale level? in order to survive. what else does history say? we'll see as it (the truth) catches up to us? finding the dead natives dead outdoors supports the 'inn was full' highspot&noose?

if the natives weren't afraid, why so easy to kill (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604140)

the better question is why were any of them killed at all? their extermination was not 'easy', & took quite a while (particularly if you count the previous native population of canada). if one saw the free feature film 'unrepentant', one might see how the queen's 'math', & clergical black-ops minions, were depopulating us (humans) BEFORE we (US) got here? more glowing fear based smoke&mirrors might be needed? the spring solstice looks warm & friendly this year. why must it be blocked? more some&mirrors 'theater' of the bizhard?

all mommys... we're dying here

The Scale (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35603876)

The scale runs from "Mild Exposure" to "Shit Your Pants and Make Peace With God."

Re:The Scale (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604088)

Actually, the scale in increasing order goes:

  1. Unmeasurable
  2. Cable news flips the fuck out
  3. Negligible
  4. Government officials start accusing the Japanese government of covering up radiation
  5. Miniscule
  6. Natural background
  7. Environmentalists start demanding we go back to coal power
  8. Same as eating a banana
  9. Potassium iodide sells out
  10. Same as flying on an airplane
  11. Fukushima is somewhere here
  12. ...
  13. ...
  14. ...
  15. ...
  16. ...
  17. ...
  18. Lifetime cancer risk increases 10%

Re:The Scale (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605674)

Not to be a pendant, but its:

"Bleed out all your orifices and Make Peace With God."

heh.

Where's The Trust Metric ( +1, Seditious ) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604064)

on the data for the maps to ensure that OLIGARCHY SOCK PUPPETS aren't feeding FALSE DATA to the maps?

Yours In Moscow,
Kilgore Trout

Re:Where's The Trust Metric ( +1, Seditious ) (1)

ocdscouter (1922930) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605432)

on the data for the maps to ensure that OLIGARCHY SOCK PUPPETS aren't feeding FALSE DATA to the maps?

Yours In Moscow, Kilgore Trout

I'm pretty sure that's covered under WP:SOCK.

If it's accurate, it's actually good news (3)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604154)

I looked at one of the maps. The highest value seen (1 microSievert/hr) means that you're barely getting more radiation over a year than you'd get spending just one hour at Chernobyl today. Since the article, at least, links to the XKCD radiation chart showing as much, I consider this actually a reassuring article - while radiation is leaking, it's not a significant amount. Besides some extra inspections on food from that area, it looks like everything is going to be essentially OK.

Re:If it's accurate, it's actually good news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35605670)

Chernobyl is the new standard for "normal"? Yay!

Re:If it's accurate, it's actually good news (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 3 years ago | (#35607954)

Chernobyl is relatively safe to visit for a day. Which means that it would be relatively safe (I'd have no problem with it, at least) to remain living by the reactor even while it's still leaking, provided they stop the leak sometime this decade - which means there's unlikely to be a significant long-term radiation problem. Fish and crops might need to be inspected more, since biomagnification can make "safe" levels dangerous, but that'll probably be the only big problem.

Come to think of it, Japan probably has the most experience at de-radiating (or whatever the term is) large areas. After all, Hiroshima and Nagasaki are major cities to this day, and I haven't heard of significant radiation remaining there. I assume there must have been some decontamination work done during the postwar reconstruction, although I can't find any info on it.

Re:If it's accurate, it's actually good news (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35612088)

Chernobyl is relatively safe to visit for a day. /quote. Translating from the pro-nuclear spin definition: "Chernobyl is still fucking dangerous; if you have to go there, don't hang around for long"

No it's not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35606452)

Take a look at that city getting around 10 mSev/year and that's not even in Fukushima perfecture. Unless a lot of that radiation is from short lived isotopes Japan is looking at a large area becoming uninhabitable, just not the entire country and not immediately.

Re:No it's not (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 3 years ago | (#35610896)

10 mSv/yr is well within normal background radiation levels.

Re:If it's accurate, it's actually good news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35607782)

That's because nobody is standing where the massive amounts of radiation are sitting, those areas have been evacuated. The firefighters pumping sea water into the reactor are being constantly monitored, the reactor IS leaking significant radiation. I don't have any idea of the half-life of that radiation, but make no mistake. There IS significant radiation leaking and very likely to be a quasi permanent exclusion zone.

It's no Chernobyl, but it is an overheated reactor .. a series of hydrogen explosions ... a damaged inner casing .. radiated steam .. fires .. and immense amounts of contaminated sea water.

Meteorology site (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35604342)

I like http://www.pljusak.com/ much better

What about Hiroshima! (1)

Ganthor (1693614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604520)

Anyone noticed there is no data from around the Hiroshima area?

Just a curious observation....not radiation detectors there?...No one wants to submit their results?

Re:What about Hiroshima! (2)

mpoulton (689851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604990)

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are not noticeably radioactive today. The residual radiation from the bombings is below normal background levels.
http://www.rerf.or.jp/general/qa_e/qa12.html [rerf.or.jp]

Wanted: (0)

ckeo (220727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604562)

100 females with model like figures ( purely for fitness purposes), and possibly naive,
to escape to a radiation free zone on mars to repopulate the human race.
- Applicants without pictures and physical measurements will be rejected.
- Nude photos in various enticing positions will be a plus.

Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (2)

Chas (5144) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604682)

Seriously, while this is going to be useful in some cases, it's just going give a whole group of people license to freak out. Or worse, try to be socially active to "clean up" the world of all radiation.

Part of the issue here is people have been indoctrinated with "all radiation is bad and will kill you no matter what the dose is".

Never mind that people are living in a sea of constant ultra-low-level exposure and would likely become ill were all sources of radiation eliminated.

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

ckeo (220727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35604746)

Yes, I still know of people that think microwave ovens will turn you into a mutant.

just sit back now and watch the sale of geiger counters and radiation suits skyrocket.

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (0)

pnewhook (788591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605138)

Seriously, while this is going to be useful in some cases, it's just going give a whole group of people license to freak out. Or worse, try to be socially active to "clean up" the world of all radiation.

Actually I was worried about the radiation until I looked at the actual radiation numbers and realized that if I stood in Fukushima next to the reactor for 3.2 YEARS, I would get the same level of radiation as a SINGLE CT scan.

This is not a worry. Nuclear power still remains the safest source of power in the world.

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605898)

What numbers have you looked at?

This guys analysis suggests that you would have received the equivalent of at least 10 CT scans just by being at the front gate since the beginning of this incident:

http://www.reddit.com/r/science/comments/g6h3l/real_data_from_the_fukushima_daiichi_power_plant/ [reddit.com]

(Be sure to pick up the updated graph, the error is explained in a comment: http://i.imgur.com/kSXLy.png [imgur.com] )

I don't have the knowledge to critique what he has done, but he is using the numbers published by the power company and it at least has the appearance of being reasonable.

A lot of that exposure is from the various steam ventings and fires and has been mostly local to the plant, so the only real concern is if things do not continue to move towards stability.

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

pnewhook (788591) | more than 3 years ago | (#35610220)

Whoops I was looking at the map listed in the article, and the closest reading to Fukushima was in Tohuku university which is about 20km or so away. That reading was 0.18 microSv per hour, which would be 3.2 years for a single CT scan equivalent.

So the link you gave shows radiation averaging 200 microSv per hour. A CT scan is about 5000 microSv, so it would take 25 hours of constant exposure to get a single CT scan. So the other analysis seems correct for right next to the gate.

But lets put those numbers into perspective. Standing outside in the sun at sea level, your exposure is approximately 0.03 micro SV/h. If you take a commercial jet flight, that climbs to about 10 micro SV/h. So even 20km away from the accident site you are still well under what you would get on a flight, which no one thinks twice about.

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

SheeEttin (899897) | more than 3 years ago | (#35608114)

Never mind that people are living in a sea of constant ultra-low-level exposure and would likely become ill were all sources of radiation eliminated.

Considering that plant life is the base of the food chain, if you removed all sources of radiation, we'd be more than ill, we'd be dead. ;)

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35612276)

Never mind that people are living in a sea of constant ultra-low-level exposure and would likely become ill were all sources of radiation eliminated.

Considering that plant life is the base of the food chain, if you removed all sources of radiation, we'd be more than ill, we'd be dead. ;)

What, so therefore the more radiation, you're exposed to the healthier you are?

Re:Helping nucleophobes freak since 19...... (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 3 years ago | (#35615690)

I know this.

You know this.

But you tell someone who's been indoctrinated into the Church of "Radiation Is All Bad", and they're going to just blank the minute you say it. It won't even register.

Three words: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35609166)

Follow-the-money. Is there anyone who would stand to profit from severe limiting of nuclear energy? Nosiree, I can't think of five rather influential groups off the top of my head.

For those posting especailly high values.... (1)

theendlessnow (516149) | more than 3 years ago | (#35605182)

For those posting especially high values... Tawkon is NOT a true radiation detection application.

And what problem does this help solve exactly? (2)

sdguero (1112795) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606194)

"These maps, available to the public for free online, are a timely example of how user-enabled systems are revolutionizing the way we solve problems."

It seems to me that this could only lead to hysteria, potentially creating a problem where there was none before.

Any scientific accuracy at all to this? (2)

Reeses (5069) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606312)

Do any of these offer baseline measurements as a control?

I look at some of those maps and think, "Man, 25's a big number. I mean, that's a lot of whatever. I should probably think about what to with my family/pets/tape backups." (Hardcore slashdotters can reverse that order.)

But, what if before the big scary nuclear steam cloud, the number was 24 already? Is an increase in 1 really worth worrying about?

What if it was 30?

What if it was 5?

How do I know?

It seems that most of this info might not be that helpful without pre-nuclear-plant-explosion numbers.

Maybe it's just me?

Open source CDV 700 to digital logger (0)

Major Variola (ret) (1980538) | more than 3 years ago | (#35606626)

Hi, I once wrote a Win32 program that parsed audio streams for clicks, from a geiger-muller counter, and logged them, graphed them, and made them available via HTTP. See CDVCounter It doesn't seem to work on Win7, but I've released it open source, so have at it. A Java port seems most appropriate, since the Universe is written in Java.

Re:Open source CDV 700 to digital logger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35606744)

no offense, but, no.. the universe of computer software is written in C..for the most part. everything else sits within said universe.

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