I don’t know why Alex Wellerstein created NUKEMAP, but he did.
Nuking my house online
BY ROBERT KRULWICH
“Wellerstein works at the American Institute of Physics in College Park, Maryland. After hours, he is a mad bomber — but a careful, data-driven, history-minded mad bomber. His newest creation, which I found on his blog, is called NUKEMAP. It allows you to choose a city, any city (I chose the Upper West Side of Manhattan, where I live), an atomic or hydrogen bomb of any size (whatever kiloton level you like, or you can pick from a list of historically specific bombs). On the screen, you’ll find a Google map of your chosen neighborhood with your bomb, represented by a little bomb-shaped icon, ticking at its center. You can then take your cursor, move the bomb to the exact location you want (when you move it, it casts a dangerous looking x on the “ground” below). When you reach your designated ground zero (I chose my apartment building), you are ready for the next step. You hit “detonate.” The explosion creates a series of concentric circles, color-coded to show the zone where everything is incinerated, the space where most things get emulsified or crushed, the space where radiation is lethal, the space where people are poisoned by radiation, the space where they are badly burned — concentric circles of destruction. The effects are chilling and fascinating. When I tried out some of the more powerful bombs, I was stunned by their destructive power. I had no idea.”
I tried it. I plugged in the data for nuking Damascus, just to see how far the damage would go… You can try it here. It is very easy.
Click on the map to enlarge–
Sadly, it seems to me that all this will soon be a real event and not just an online novelty…