1) Science phrases which made us laugh: "Blind thrust fault" a fault line which does not quite reach the surface, so it is difficult to detect as well as dangerous. Also "Love waves" named after a dude called Love, they are horizontally polarised shear waves.
2) The Richter scale is actually logarithmic. This means that the waves of a 9.5 tremor are actually 10 times the size of an 8.5 one and 100 times bigger than waves of a 7.5 quake. The energy of the quake increases 31 times for each unit increase of the Richter scale. Other better known logarithmic scales include, magnitude of stars and decibels and pH.
3) The scientific study of earthquakes is called seismology and the devises used to detect earthquakes are called seismographs. Seismographs have been set up all over the world which allow seismologists to pinpoint where the earthquake first started and how strong it was. It was actually by studying earthquakes around the world which allowed scientists to work out that the outer core of the earth was liquid rather than a solid as was assumed.