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Archives >> 2006 Forecast Lounge

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Clark
Meteorologist


Reged: Wed
Posts: 1710
Loc: Great Lakes 45.95N 84.55W
FSU product discussion
      #65309 - Wed May 24 2006 02:03 PM

Well, for lack of a better way of introduction, I will just say that this is shaping up to be a dark day within the field. I encourage you all to visit any of the weather webpages at http://moe.met.fsu.edu/, including the Cyclone Phase diagrams (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/cyclonephase/), MM5 output (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/mm5/) and TC Genesis pages (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/tcgengifs/), today and on a regular basis for at least part of why this is a dark day and what you may be able to do to help.

Pardon the interruption.

--------------------
Current Tropical Model Output Plots
(or view them on the main page for any active Atlantic storms!)


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CoalCracker
Weather Hobbyist


Reged: Fri
Posts: 93
Loc: Cape Coral, FL 26.63N 81.94W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65312 - Wed May 24 2006 03:07 PM

As of this posting the GFS, GFDL, CMC, and NOGAPS models are still available at the Penn State site:

http://met.psu.edu/tropical/tcgengifs/

Both the FSU and PSU sites which display these models are quite similar. Not sure if the PSU site will also become unavailable in the near future. I can't believe that FSU will no longer make the models available to the public. As a Florida resident, I'll be sure to let the powers that be at FSU know my opinion once I locate a contact name/email. And their timing is unbelievable--right before the start of the 2006 season.


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Margie
Senior Storm Chaser


Reged: Fri
Posts: 1191
Loc: Twin Cities
You beat me to it. [Re: Clark]
      #65313 - Wed May 24 2006 03:33 PM

Clark, I was just coming here to ask you, ...what in the sam hill? Guess this is FSU's contribution to Hurricane Preparedness Week.

C-squared, I'm sure the timing is deliberate, and I can guess as to who or what is behind it.

What we're referring to is this text that appears when you go to look at the cyclone phase diagrams:

"Notice: Florida State University has mandated effective 24 May 2006 that no real-time weather forecasts relating potentially in any way to hurricanes are to be disseminated by faculty or students at FSU. Consequently, this web page has been shut down UFN. A contact email and phone number to register complaints will be posted here soon."

Nice to know you, Clark. We'll hear from you again after you graduate? Just kidding; actually, I think if you add a disclaimer to all your posts -- say, in your signature -- FSU can't control what you do on your own time.

--------------------
Katrina's Surge: http://www.wunderground.com/hurricane/Katrinas_surge_contents.asp


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cdm-orlando
Unregistered




Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65314 - Wed May 24 2006 05:28 PM

Why wait ..... here are a couple of contacts that may want to know....

jeb.bush@myflorida.com - GOVERNOR

Toni.Jennings@MyFlorida.com - LT. GOVERNOR JENNINGS


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CaneTrackerInSoFl
Storm Tracker


Reged: Mon
Posts: 395
Loc: 25.63N 80.33W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65315 - Wed May 24 2006 06:13 PM

Quote:

Well, for lack of a better way of introduction, I will just say that this is shaping up to be a dark day within the field. I encourage you all to visit any of the weather webpages at http://moe.met.fsu.edu/, including the Cyclone Phase diagrams (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/cyclonephase/), MM5 output (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/mm5/) and TC Genesis pages (http://moe.met.fsu.edu/tcgengifs/), today and on a regular basis for at least part of why this is a dark day and what you may be able to do to help.

Pardon the interruption.



I saw that today. What the hell is up with that? Isn't there something called the Freedom of Information Act? How can a government institution block the disemination of models to the general public, especially to students like myself who are aspiring to become a meteorologist? I am going to be sure to let them know my disapproval and that this will affect my decision as to if I get into FSU to go or not.

--------------------
Andrew 1992, Irene 1999, Katrina 2005, Wilma 2005



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leetdan
Weather Guru


Reged: Wed
Posts: 132
Loc: Orlando
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65317 - Wed May 24 2006 06:52 PM

This is certainly disappointing, to put it lightly.

In other news, the first of a new generation of weather satellites was launched today, after about a year of various delays.

GOES-N is up! (as seen from my UCF-area apartment)


No official pics of the launch yet, but here it is still on the pad:


--------------------
[witty phrase here]
08: 14/6/2


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Bloodstar
Moderator


Reged: Mon
Posts: 400
Loc: Georgia Tech 33.78N 84.40W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: leetdan]
      #65318 - Wed May 24 2006 07:12 PM

A few thoughts. Publicity on something like this, particularly if the arguement is framed to point out the negative effects on the public. Getting CNN, Slashdot, Fox News or even a local station to pick up the story could place perssure on the people who did this.

It looks like the PSU models are not based on FSU information, or if they are, FSU hasn't shut down that particular backdoor. Hopefully PSU is self contained and not under the jurisdition of the FSU edict.

I'm not sure i can find a silver lining in this mess, I almost feel like Accuweather is somehow behind this (vis a vis their efforts get a bill introduced/passed to remove the government from releasing any weather information to the public). (tries to keep his tinfoil had hidden)

Whooops, I think my tinfoil hat was on too tight when I was writing this, I wasn't intending to say that I actually thought Accuweather was behind it. it just felt like some similar reasoning might be behind it. And the first thing that crossed my mind was, 'I bet they're doing because they're afraid they'll get sued by someone for whatever reason.' I certainly could have phrased that less aggressively and made myself much clearer... sorry bout that. -edited mmd

Perhaps the best tips I know about hurricane preparation are: Drop your air conditioning to a very low temprature before a storm hits if you intend to stay, turn your circuit breakers off before you leave if you evacuate. and to have a plan of action ready before there is even a hint of a storm brewing. Living in Palm Harbor, my goal is to be comfortable for 72 hours without power, and able to go a week without hating life if power remains out. After that, I'm leaving.

--------------------
TD/TS/HU/MH
16/15/09/04 <- My prediction (2014 Predictions)
03/03/01/00 <- Year Totals

http://blog.bloodstar.org

Edited by Bloodstar (Wed May 24 2006 11:49 PM)


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danielwAdministrator
Moderator


Reged: Wed
Posts: 3460
Loc: Hattiesburg,MS (31.3N 89.3W)
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Bloodstar]
      #65323 - Wed May 24 2006 07:53 PM

Somehow, I don't believe that bringing the Media into this will resolve the issue any faster.

The note on Dr Hart's site indicates that they are trying to mitigate the problem.

edit:
"NOTICE: Due to the administrative powers that be, the Florida State University Dean Joseph Travis, President T.K. Wetherell, and General Counsel Betty Steffens have demanded that all FSU real-time analysis of TCs no longer be available for public consumption. This effects this site, FSU MM5, Cyclone Phase Space, TC Genesis, etc. Contact information will be posted shortly for all persons responsible."
http://moe.met.fsu.edu/~hrw22/

Edited by danielw (Wed May 24 2006 08:33 PM)


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Clark
Meteorologist


Reged: Wed
Posts: 1710
Loc: Great Lakes 45.95N 84.55W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: danielw]
      #65324 - Wed May 24 2006 08:29 PM

Just want to make one more brief comment: it's not Accuweather behind all of this. Much as it may seem like they are behind it, they aren't, and I don't want to run the risk of sullying their name or their products/efforts.

Now back to your regularly schedule programming: preparation for the hurricane season Unfortunately, this is tied into that too.

--------------------
Current Tropical Model Output Plots
(or view them on the main page for any active Atlantic storms!)


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Hootowl
Weather Hobbyist


Reged: Thu
Posts: 77
Loc: New Port Richey, Fl 28.27N 82.65W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65335 - Thu May 25 2006 06:22 AM

Well.....this just bites!!!! Sorry guys - there's no other way to put it.

I checked this morning and this little tidbit was added ....

"The authors of these web pages realize the value of these pages, do not agree with the decision, and are working hard to resolve this issue by friday.

Thank you for your patience.

Bob Hart"

We can cross our fingers and hope. If ya'll figure out who to contact - please post it here as I am sure there are others besides myself that would love to send a friendly email to the responsible party(s).

try this link http://met.psu.edu/tropical/tcgengifs/

Edited by Hootowl (Thu May 25 2006 06:36 AM)


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Wingman51
Weather Guru


Reged: Tue
Posts: 126
Loc: Orlando, FL 28.41N 81.24W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Hootowl]
      #65336 - Thu May 25 2006 09:34 AM

FYI - - sent an E-mail to t.Jennings office last night and received a phone call this am from her office - - they SAY they had no idea why decision was made or who authorized but that they were going to investigate ane get back - - we will see.

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Steve H1
Storm Tracker


Reged: Fri
Posts: 289
Loc: Palm Bay FL USA
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Hootowl]
      #65337 - Thu May 25 2006 09:38 AM

Well, sounds like another episode of 'Invasion." Hurricane heading toward JAX.........uh.....Islamorada.....j/k. I don't remember the FSU superensemble ever being available to the general public, only heard it on NHC storm discos. Was it available?? Anyhow, that tropical wave in the central atlantic is still fascinating to me in that we're still in May and it wants to re-fire. Climatology forbids it, nature abhors it, yet its still there, with another off the African coast. While nothing may come of this, its a bit ominous. High pressure to the north; calm UL winds, and warm water beneath. A sign of things to come??

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Margie
Senior Storm Chaser


Reged: Fri
Posts: 1191
Loc: Twin Cities
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Steve H1]
      #65338 - Thu May 25 2006 02:51 PM

This was posted as a comment on Jeff Master's Wunderground blog:

"FSU Meteorology has received a memorandum from the administration requiring us to take actions which seem to us to restrict our ability to continue to offer real-time weather forecasts (even clearly identified experimental models) of any kind to the general public. Until we obtain further clarification, in the interest of due caution, these pages have been withdrawn from the web until further notice. That is basically all we can say about it right now.

Paul Ruscher / Meteorology"

I called and did get direct information from the FSU Meteorology Dept.

This is the text of the memo that was sent by the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President of the university to the Met. Dept. This should be helpful in framing feedback.

"With the advent of the 2006 hurricane season and the continuing expectation that serious storms will affect the coastal US, let me remind you that Florida State University's Meteorology Department is not in the business of providing real-time hurricane forecasts for public consumption. The National Hurricane Center in Miami is the official agency charged with providing hurricane forecasts to the public. It could cause serious confusion and significant legal issues for any person or entity to provide forecasting information that is in conflict with the NHC."

The way this is worded, I feel there is clearly more behind the scenes than is said. There was probably more specific information that was not made available to the general public.

* * * * * * *

I have found out what is going on and I was very much reassured. I can tell you that the university is probably going to provide a more detailed statement on what is going on, shortly. I think this will be helpful in stemming paranoia that this is the first step of an overall trend to restrict weather information. That is really not the case. So don't worry. It will just take some time to straighten things out. Also, feedback will not be required at this point and will not help the situation.

Edited by Margie (Thu May 25 2006 04:41 PM)


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HanKFranK
User


Reged: Mon
Posts: 1841
Loc: Graniteville, SC 33.56N 81.82W
dark day? [Re: Margie]
      #65340 - Thu May 25 2006 03:45 PM

i don't see why a disclaimer that whatever is being posted isn't the official NHC word on the matter doesn't cover the problem nicely. you can go to different media that don't necessarily agree with the NHC already--this is nothing new. many of them already defer to the NHC, mentioning that their product is not what the government and emergency planners are setting their watches by.
clark ought to be able to post here under the table, no problem, since we all understand that ours are best guesses, and the NHC is the real authority... and oh, by the way, clark knows a hell of a lot more than most people here, myself included. if they want to pack up bob hart's neat offerings until.. i dunno, the FDA approves them for public use or whatever (love waiting for them), then that's just nanny government, or maybe just worries about some kind of weather malpractice absurdity.
kinda neat seeing ol' dr. ruscher's name up there. once upon a time i was in synoptic under him. back before i jumped ship on meteorology.
i posted a little on the eastpac disturbance (eventually aletta, i'm thinking) in the other basins forum. if it spins up it could affect the goings on over on this side. GFS keeps wandering with it, but is still developing a low pressure down in the western caribbean in early june.
HF 2045z25may


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Major7
Weather Watcher


Reged: Wed
Posts: 37
Loc: Hollywood, FL 26.02N/80.20W a...
Re: dark day? [Re: HanKFranK]
      #65344 - Thu May 25 2006 05:45 PM

I like being able to have many different types of data to look through. Last year, I requested info from FSU and received a reply that the particular information was not available to the general public. pshaw! I found a backdoor for the info I wanted.

I hope that all of this gets straightened out soon. I like to look at the FSU models.

Edited by Major7 (Thu May 25 2006 05:47 PM)


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Margie
Senior Storm Chaser


Reged: Fri
Posts: 1191
Loc: Twin Cities
Re: dark day? [Re: Major7]
      #65346 - Thu May 25 2006 06:05 PM

Quote:

Last year, I requested info from FSU and received a reply that the particular information was not available to the general public. pshaw! I found a backdoor for the info I wanted.



That is the problem.

Weather information that is provided by the government is paid for by tax dollars, is public domain, and should be so.

Not all university research is funded through tax dollars. A surprisingly large amount is funded by private interests, and in such cases bound by legal agreements, and by definition is not public domain. What is further, there is a difference between an experimental prototype, which is still being researched and improved, and any targeted future commercial product that can be derived from it.

Quote:

I like being able to have many different types of data to look through.




Just because information exists, doesn't mean it is public domain.

edited to remove directed remarks~danielw

Edited by danielw (Mon May 29 2006 12:46 AM)


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Bloodstar
Moderator


Reged: Mon
Posts: 400
Loc: Georgia Tech 33.78N 84.40W
Re: dark day? [Re: Margie]
      #65347 - Thu May 25 2006 07:36 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Last year, I requested info from FSU and received a reply that the particular information was not available to the general public. pshaw! I found a backdoor for the info I wanted.



That is the problem.

Weather information that is provided by the government is paid for by tax dollars, is public domain, and should be so.

Not all university research is funded through tax dollars. A surprisingly large amount is funded by private interests, and in such cases bound by legal agreements, and by definition is not public domain. What is further, there is a difference between an experimental prototype, which is still being researched and improved, and any targeted future commercial product that can be derived from it.

Quote:

I like being able to have many different types of data to look through.



Just because information exists, doesn't mean it is public domain.




I suppose Accounting has some means of seperating the dollars such that the University can say, 'this is public domain' or 'this is private copyrighted work'
Unfortunately their logic seems to be, 'we're afraid of getting sued' so let's hide all this information.

I'd be happy with a middle ground, where they set up a somewhat restricted access that let people sign up after agreeing to some sort of EULA to the effect of: 'I understand that these are not forecast products and are here for educational purposes. yadda yadda'

Having not seen the models, nor seen what it takes to power them, I don't know how much computing power is needed to produce the models in question. Nor do I know how and were the information is stored. or if it would be accessable by another party. But in a perfect world.

Build a GPL'd software that is able to:
1) generate the datapoints needed to model the atmospheric changes over time
2) create a graphical model of said datapoints to enable easy understanding of the information generated.

2 can be created from having access to the raw data.

being able to create a system to generate the raw data would be an amazing and spectacular project, (yeah, see that one up on sourceforge) but honestly, I don't even have enough information to know where to start.

(if computing power is an issue. ther'es always a internet distributed project like [Email]seti@home)[/Email]

The big question comes down to, who's paying for the raw data.

yeah, I'm all over the map with this post; so I'll shut up now.
-Mark

--------------------
TD/TS/HU/MH
16/15/09/04 <- My prediction (2014 Predictions)
03/03/01/00 <- Year Totals

http://blog.bloodstar.org

Edited by danielw (Mon May 29 2006 12:48 AM)


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RedingtonBeachGuy
Moderator


Reged: Tue
Posts: 321
Loc: Orlando, FL
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: Clark]
      #65348 - Thu May 25 2006 08:10 PM

That is *very* sad Clark and it makes CDM's lawsuit against MLBAM seem almost childish. I can't believe a university project funded in part with taxpayer dollars refuses to disemminate research it is collecting to protect the public safety of those that help fund it.

I have to gather that they are taking the same steps as MLBAM is.. they want a revenue stream from the data and they want to be in control of who the receiver is.

Is there any other communication about this issue posted anywhere we can read up on this issue?


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wereallgonnadie
Verified CFHC User


Reged: Thu
Posts: 22
Loc: nw fla
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: RedingtonBeachGuy]
      #65350 - Thu May 25 2006 10:34 PM

Don't be so hard on the FSU admin. I may be biased as an alum but it's not like they're banning all the models in the world. You can still all the model runs at Skeetobites site and other uh (will not mention names so I don't get banned after first post). From cruising other weather web sites this might actually be a good thing as so many people get hyped and panicked because a certain model says this. Rely on the pros and keep your sanity I say.

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Random Chaos
Weather Analyst


Reged: Sat
Posts: 998
Loc: Maryland 38.98N 76.50W
Re: A dark day in meteorology... [Re: wereallgonnadie]
      #65351 - Thu May 25 2006 10:51 PM

There is a big difference from being able to see the vorticity and pressure gradients in an animation mode (aka PSU and FSU met departments) and being able to just see the centerline of the model output. It isn't as if we can't see the GFS and NAM elsewhere (such as NECP's model graphics), but the localization of FSU's site is far better than the much larger (and poorer java-coded applet) that NECP uses.

Looking for good news on this. Very unfortunate about FSU vanishing so fast.

Question: Since many of the TC graphics on FSU were downloaded from a NOAA server, and since the appliaction that animates them is semi-open (PSU and FSU use the same one), wouldn't it be possible for the aflicted parties to put it up on a personal, non-FSU, related website for the NOAA data parts? Clearly MM5 and perhaps TCGenisis would vanish, but better some than none.


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