|Helendale Quake Data
The large encrypted file on Ellen Emerson's computer turned out to be this rupture animation of the Helendale Earthquake. It shows the energy wave of the quake propagating through the ground over an area of several miles. The energy waves looked eerily like the giant desert symbol. The black diagonal line in the center is a representation of the Helendale Fault in southern California.
For more information about real rupture animations and earthquake science visit the Southern California Earthquake Data Center
Bogus rupture animation by Andrew Leman, with indispensible help from John Marquis.