Thursday, February 01, 2007

'Spann'ing the Weather

James Spann's name has already appeared recently here on this blog in reference to his being in the headlines lately for weather-politics. As a meteorologist, Spann has a blog associated with Birmingham's ABC 33/40 affiliate.

Spann's blog is the anti-TV forecast. Every meteorologist (and weather person, for those who aren't) is limited to giving tiny soundbites about the forecast that hardly go anywhere near a real explanation of what is happening. Even on the much-heralded Weather Channel the usual forecasts deal with very little of the computer models and the explanations behind what is actually going on. The exception on The Weather Channel is when one of their experts is brought into the picture to explain some specific weather event, such as a developing winter storm.

Spann's blog goes deep into the weather, giving explanations beyond what most of us hear, and to the degree that some of us desire. He actually explains the reasons why the high temperature in Birmingham has failed to reach the forecast high nearly every day for the past two weeks. Spann argues that too many meteorologists are depending too much on computer models that do not "think" about what is taking place, but merely suggest a forecast based on history and averages.

The Weather Channel is sort of like the Cliff's Notes version of the weather forecast and explanation. James Spann (and I'm sure there are others) is the 1200 page novel with the real details.

No comments: