Quake warning system put to test

It's been talked about for decades, especially after every major earthquake. But the Japanese telecom giant NTT is trying to make a reality out of a pre-quake alarm that warns of temblors in the way that sirens warn of tornadoes.

The alarm, which is based on a national network of seismometers, can provide just enough time to run for cover, according to Tokyo-based Pink Tentacle. NTT even is airing a dramatized commercial depicting a college student's reaction to a 20-second warning, a clip that has been posted on YouTube.

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    Mike Yamamoto is an executive editor for CNET News.com.

     

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