Today seismology is poised to play its most important role yet in helping the public make good decisions regarding earthquake safety. New applications and products have the potential to change the way people think about, prepare for, and experience earthquakes. But will the new products really save lives and significantly reduce financial losses in the next major urban earthquake? Much of the answer depends on how successfully we practice outreach between now and then.

Some of the new products generated by the earthquake science community are remarkably user-friendly, and seismology has played the key role in their development. A few...

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