Nova Scotia

Titanic sinking to be tweeted in real time

Today is the 99th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic and you'll be able to follow the disaster "unfolding" on Twitter.

Wireless messages from 1912 will recap disaster

Today is the 99th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, and you'll be able to follow the disaster unfold on Twitter.

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is tweeting the vessel's original wireless messages from that night in 1912, and in real time.

It starts at 11:55 ADT, the same hour the ship struck an iceberg off Newfoundland. The pre-programmed tweets will continue to go out all night long.

Dan Conlin, the museum's marine historian, said those following the exercise should experience the magnitude of the disaster.  

"I think they'll get a sense that when this disaster happened nobody knew it was going to happen. We all know what happened to Titanic, we all know how the story unfolded in great detail. Well, nobody knew in 1912, let alone those poor wireless operators in their isolated, little windswept huts. And as you get these isolated, fragmented messages you get a sense of how this thing is building," said Conlin.

The largest passenger steamship in the world, the White Star Line vessel was equipped with the most modern wireless technology available in its day. The wireless transmissions, sent in morse code, were crucial in saving survivors and communicating news of the sinking.

Titanic on Twitter, as it's been dubbed, is an experiment so the museum can prepare for the 100th anniversary of the sinking next year, said Conlin.

The museum, on the Halifax waterfront, is home to a permanent Titanic exhibit. As the closest major port to the sinking, all of the recovered bodies were brought to Halifax, along with many pieces of wreckage that floated to the surface.

150 of the 1,500 Titanic victims are buried in Halifax, the largest number anywhere in the world.

You can follow Titanic on Twitter using the hashtag #ns_mma.

A similar effort was made by Nature magazine in 2009 to tweet the events of the Apollo 11 moon landing on its 40th anniversary.