One of the world's most remote inhabited places, the Kuril Islands, was the site of a great earthquake this morning (10 p.m. local time). Exactly halfway between Hokkaido and Kamchatka, this shallow thrust event is practically routine along the subduction zone at the western edge of the Pacific plate. The U.S. Geological Survey's special page
for this event has the scientific particulars.
A tsunami warning went out for the northern Pacific, but only a small one was observed in Japan, no more than 30 centimeters high. But about 10 hours later, northern California was struck by significant tsunamis. Crescent City's harbor suffered damage. Details are online from the San Jose Mercury News.