Greetings all. It’s been a while.
You may have already guessed, but updates here were completely halted due to the Great East Japan Earthquake that stuck the Tohoku and Kanto regions of Japan at 2.46pm on March 11th. The quake was enormous, topping the Japanese Shindo scale at 7 and rocking the lands with a Magnitude of 9. Then came the tsunami with waves over 10m high, causing most of the damage and leaving many dead and thousands homeless. Finally, a disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant sent the foreign media into a frenzy and caused widespread panic across the country. Aftershocks continue even now.
I’ve been doing what I can to help. Beginning just a few hours after the initial quake struck, I began live blogging information about the disaster. A bunch of great people on Twitter also came together to produce an amazing work known as Quakebook which contains stories from the earthquake. I wrote an article for the book and am also helping out behind the scenes working on the website, as well as managing requests from volunteers. All money raised from the book goes to the Japanese Red Cross and even Amazon has waived their own fees for putting it on Kindle.
Up until a week or two ago, the situation at Fukushima was still dangerous (and still remains serious), but things seem to be gradually quietening down and things thankfully returning to normal. Reconstruction efforts will stretch into the months ahead though, and the effects of this disaster will not soon be forgotten. Quakebook, too, seems to have triumphed now that we have past the initial peak. The book went on sale about a week ago – you can buy it here. A Japanese language version is in the works.
So with that, I’d like to offer my apologies for the long delay in updates, especially to the paid subscribers. I simply haven’t had the time in between my day job, providing information on the disaster and Quakebook to gather material and write posts. The rest of the team has similarly been busy in their own ways dealing with the situation. Please rest assured though that new material will resume shortly and continue as normal. Those on the monthly subscription plan will be compensated for the lack of updates. I also plan to run a competition with gifts from Japan sometime over the coming months to inject a little bit of cheer back into things as well.
If you haven’t already, you can donate to the Red Cross via the Google disaster information page. Thank you again for your patience throughout what I hope has been the worst of the disaster.