Glossary

Acceleration: The change in speed per unit time (e.g., my car accelerates from 0 to 60 km/hr in 5 seconds, or 12km/hr in 1 second, or 12,000 m/hr in one second, or 3 1/3 m/s/s). Earths gravity has an acceleration of 9.8m/s/s.

Accelerometer: An instrument that measures the change in speed per unit time.

Active Protection System (APS): An accelerometer system internal to ThinkPad laptops that helps protect the internal hard drive from damage when shocked or dropped.

Aftershock: Any earthquake that occurs after a large earthquake (or mainshock) in the same vicinity. Usually after large earthquakes there are many aftershocks, which reduce in number gradually with time. Aftershocks can be dangerous because they can shake already damaged buildings. Aftershocks are one of the many reasons you should never enter a damaged building after an earthquake.

Bit: A binary digit of either 0 or 1.

Body Waves: A wave that travels through the interior of the Earth (a opposed to along the surface).

BOINC: Abbreviation for the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing. This open source code provides an architecture that enables and standardizes distributed computing.

Byte: A unit of measure of information storage. One byte is composed of eight bits.

Central Processing Unit: (CPU) A logic machine that executes computer programs.

Core: (Computer): A linked logic chip making up one component of a Central Processing Unit.

CPU: Abbreviation of Central Processing Unit.

Dip: The angle from horizontal that a fault tilts into the Earth.

Distributed Computing: A computing architecture that divides portions of a calculation among many distributed computers. Parallel processing differs in that it runs programs on many processors of the same computer, not separate computers.

Earth: The third planet from the Sun. Earth is the largest of the terrestrial planet in the solar system.

Earthquake: the sudden release of a large amount of energy that is built up in the Earth