03
Dec
12

at the mercy of sandy

December 2012This was a big moment for me

I realized that technology is a strong sparring partner to Mother Nature, but little more than that. For a while it was beginning to look like engineering had managed to sew up all the creases in Mother Nature’s fold. Not so.

Hurricane Sandy, which swept through here the last week in October, crippled parts of the Northeast, especially much of what we call the tri-state area—New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. ASME’s Manhattan headquarters was forced to close for a week. Personally, I was without electricity, heat, and hot water for six days—and I was, truly, one of the lucky ones.

When some of us were finally able to access the Internet—the fury of the storm interrupted even our now most basic form of communication—a colleague wrote the following:

It has been a rough week to say the least. I live on a barrier island and I am close to the beach. There is extensive damage where I live. The streets are covered with between 1 and 4 feet of sand and a lot of debris. There are wrecked cars everywhere. Two cars floated in front of my house and landed there. There is no power, water or sewers. There is nowhere to buy food, gas or other essentials. Aid from the authorities was slow in coming, but it is now starting to fall into place. There is a 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew in place. The National Guard and state police are patrolling the streets. So it is not livable there right now. My wife and I are staying with relatives for now.

Believe it or not, my colleague was one of the lucky ones as well. Others lost even more; some even their lives. The vastness of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy was remarkable. This area has never seen anything like it. Based on the age of the infrastructure and topography of this region, the fact that I was without what I’ve gotten used to considering as essential rights—electricity, heat, and hot water—for only a week is akin to a technological marvel.

Yet, as I write this—and the cleanup is still in progress—some politicians, pundits, and even my own neighbors are beginning to blame local utility companies for not being ready for such a storm, for not reacting fast enough, for not having the technology infrastructure in place to withstand the strong winds, for not restoring electricity fast enough.

Human nature, much like Mother Nature, often eludes the realities of technology that is stretched and not infallible. We can’t regulate what is beyond our control—like the weather. We can only work to improve the technology that mitigates the aftermath of storms like Sandy and her kind.

Even if we are not affected personally, intellectually we comprehend the saga of helpless victims of natural disasters in remote areas of the world, or disasters that occur in our own countries. As never before, I now appreciate the technology that I’ve grown to take for granted. It was a big moment.


6 Responses to “at the mercy of sandy”


  1. April 28, 2016 at 8:12 am

    good thus various persons will end up being in hesitation that how to download the videos from websites but it is normally incredibly simple to download by employing nice.

  2. June 15, 2016 at 5:03 am

    good On the key software, you would find two choices as “SEND” or “RECEIVE”. You can choose any of them established on your requirements.great.

  3. July 13, 2016 at 12:22 am

    good Theatre Pack no cost iphone app presents buffering of clips across multiple genres and categorizations. Simply just opt for any one of the clips and love it on your Laptop or computer or Laptops.nice.

  4. August 15, 2016 at 1:24 am

    good Xamarin offers the indigenous android, ios and house windows apps. It dispatch better apps faster with automated testing. It bring mobile DevOps to your apps and reliability to your users. nice.

  5. November 14, 2016 at 4:29 am

    good If needed it can be selected by the user, and it contains private notifications, expiring chats, and end to end encryption.Open Whisper Systems Signal Protocol used in the Sign program will be used by the encryption alloappdownload http://alloappdownload.com nice.

  6. November 15, 2016 at 6:26 am

    good If needed it can be selected by the user, and it contains private notifications, expiring chats, and end to end encryption.Open Whisper Systems Signal Protocol used in the Sign program will be used by the encryption nice.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


The Editor

John G. Falcioni is Editor-in-Chief of Mechanical Engineering magazine, the flagship publication of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

December 2012
M T W T F S S
« Nov   Jan »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

Twitter from John Falcioni

Twitter from Engineering for Change

Friend us on Facebook

Friend ASME

Friend Engineering for Change

Friend ASME Nanotechnology Institute


%d bloggers like this: