The next 12 to 24 hours will be crucial for Joaquin. There is currently a trough moving off the east coast. If Joaquin interacts with this trough it dramatically increase the chance of landfall. If it doesn't it looks like Joaquin will go out to sea.
Below is a picture of the current east coast sattelite. The long stripe of clouds going down the eastern Seaboard is the trough. In the Bahamas is Joaquin.
Here is a zoomed in look at Joaquin.
The reason for its ragged and eyeless structure is because it is currently undergoing a major structural change. What this means is that Joaquin's size and shape is changing. This could help Joaquin interact with the trough if it grows.
Tomorrow and Saturday will be rainy days for the Jersey shore. Also expect high winds gusting to tropical storm force and moderate to major coastal flooding. None of this is associated with Joaquin and is actually associated with a nor'easter. The more north and west you go the better conditions will be for tomorrow and the upcoming weekend.
This will probably be my last website update of the night. However, I will be tweeting until late tonight... https://twitter.com/CONWEATHER