For this assignment, Clair Chin and I decided to make a Space Weather Alert system to notify individuals when solar flares/other space weather events occur. We envisioned the blink(1) to be placed in a symbolic, sun-shaped lantern located in a household.
For our system to work, we created a twitter account (@SolarScanner) that would trigger the blink event. We created a list of solar weather twitters, then used the web service “RoundTeam” to automatically retweet any posts from this list. When a space weather alert is issued, or an M or X class solar flare is reported, the twitter we created (@SolarScanner) will trigger the blink device, and the lantern will illuminate.
A solar flare is a prime example of an unseen force that directly effects the earth. This space weather alert system creates a visual notification of these unseen forces. To expand on this project, I would create different colors/frequencies depending on the severity of the solar flare. It might also be interesting to expand the idea to other natural phenomena, such as earthquakes or meteorites.