It seems the storm was a supercell - the kind that form twisters in the US, although thankfully not in this case. Instead it delivered a massive amount of hail and flooding directly in the centre of Canberra. Lots of buildings had to close on Wednesday, including the Federal Court, the Canberra Centre (the main shopping centre in Civic, the centre of town) and the Australian National University. Reports indicate 60 buildings in the university sustained severe damage. In the circumstances it is understandable why everything is so confused - the maintenance people have done a splendid job in dealing with the aftermath.
Unfortunately my research building was one of the worst affected - the skylights were smashed by the hail and the building suffered severe flooding and hail damage in areas, including the graduate student cubicles where my desk is located and the computer vision and robotics labs. I have not heard much more as they are still get inspectors in to assess the damage and see if it is safe. I hope the robots and cameras are okay.
It's a pretty safe bet that I won't be back at my desk for some time, so I guess I'll have to shift into working on my PhD at home as best I can for a while and stop worrying about what's going on.
Next entry I will get back on track with game development updates. At least all my game dev work, books and equipment are nice and dry.