Earthquake monitoring has come a long way since the squiggly lines on paper that we all imagine when we hear of them occurring. Almost everything now is computerized. An electronic seismometer is a state-of-the art data logger system. They can accurately record both small local earthquakes and large distant ones. These recording devices are commonly used in scientific experiments or monitoring situations, where there is the need to collect information where accuracy is crucial. Examples of the types of information a data logger system can collect include temperatures, sound frequencies, vibrations, times, electrical currents, pressure and changes in states of matter.
Technology is at the point where scientists now have the ability to record the areas of ground-motion of large magnitude earthquakes, providing maps that are crucial to finding the areas that have suffered the largest damage and losses. Information recorded by a data logger system can include: seismic waveforms, electromagnetic data, GPS data, and earthquake parametric data. Extensive earthquake data has been cataloged and archived by researchers utilizing a data logger system. This information is useful in potentially predicting seismic activity along the many tectonic plates (fault lines) across the globe.
Obviously, we haven’t reached the ability to predict earthquakes as of yet. The ability to do so would save millions of lives and infrastructure. Scientists are working hard to give people early warning of an earthquake with the help of a data logger system. Sophisticated sensors measuring ground motion are continually being developed for the purpose of an early warning system. Small earthquakes occur on a continual basis and are always recorded by researchers armed with this state-of-the-art technology. It's the larger, potentially destructive earthquakes that define the purpose of an early warning system.

Author's Bio: 

BIOPAC develops, manufactures, and supports data acquisition and analysis systems for life science research and education, including data logger systems and accessories. BIOPAC is used in thousands of labs worldwide.