STEM News & Research
It's good to see articles like this using popular culture as a springboard to explain how science really works. Though it'd be better if films were just, y'know, scientifically accurate.
In the film, Lawrence Hayes, a fictional seismologist at Caltech (a real university), notices spikes in "magnetic pulses" that light up California like a Christmas tree, heralding a monster quake.
Despite a century of research, earthquake prediction remains elusive. Scientists can't predict when a jolt is coming and are generally pessimistic about ever having that ability.
Every warning sign scrutinized — animal behavior, weather patterns, electromagnetic signals, atmospheric observations, levels of radon gas in soil or groundwater — has failed.
This makes me think of Dara O'Briain and the brilliant thing he did about the movie 2012 in which neutrinos apparently mutate. I tried to find a video clip of just that bit but sadly couldn't.
In a similar vein, geologist Dr Lucy Jones livetweeted the premiere with a commentary on accuracy.
Longer collection of her tweets:
Apparently we have a competent young woman character! I am so looking forward to this movie, even if the science is mostly bunk.
Thanks for this heads-up!
I posted to Linkedin about Dr. Jones tweeting at the premiere:
This was fun to share!