It looks like Microsoft has the stage all to itself today with a west-coast launch of Windows Phone 8. Google has been forced to postpone its Fall product launch due to the impending hurricane, which is being recording in minute detail across the web.
Not A Good Day
With the impending hurricane threatening a large part of the east coast and New York, Google had little choice but to cancel its launch of the new Nexus 4 smartphone and the expanded range of Nexus tablets. Since most of the information is already out there, a delay won't hurt the company, and with minds on more practical matters, focus and coverage would be limited.
That leaves Microsoft with a free run across the tech press with its San Francisco Windows Phone 8 launch event, assuming they've cleared up from all the rioting last night over the Giant's World Series win. That will come hot on the heels of the Windows 8 launch, that Microsoft managed to pull off in Times Square before the weather closed in.
UPDATE: Google has put up its blog posts for the new hardware anyway, you can read about the new tablets and phones here, and Google's full-spectrum approach to content and media on the move.
Social Takes Over
With so much information about the hurricane needing to be dispersed over such a wide area, social media is leaping to the fore. Not only can those in the hurricane's track keep a detailed eye on its progress vita Twitter, but the world is watching on beach-front web-cams and every local news site is doing its best to keep readers informed.
Google isn't abandoning its users though, a mash-ups of Google Maps and the storm track, or more practically, evacuation center information and other details are being put online to help. Those faraway, perhaps on one of the thousands of cancelled flights, are getting help and advice online wherever they are stuck.
Decision makers and the general public are all getting direct data as the weather recon planes and sea buoys measure the surging tides and wave height, and the plummeting air pressure in the heart of the storm. As long as the power holds out, this will be the best recorded hurricane in history.
On a local, state, national and global basis, everyone's actions are under scrutiny. From foolish weather presenters trying to get closest to the storm to the politicians and civil leaders who must manage the response, the next few hours and days won't be a good time to make a public mistake. Stay safe if you're in the direct path, under the threat of blizzards or flooding inland and we'll hope to see you on the other side.