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Rain will begin in 10 minutes ... 5,4,3,2,1...

Real time weather prediction
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Forecast states 60% chance of thunder showers... on one side of the sky its sunny, on the other there are dark clouds are forming. You want to go pick up milk at a store 10 minutes away and don't want to carry an umbrella, will you make it?

There is only one way to be sure: Iphone / Blackberry / Android app that submits your current GPS location to a weather service. The service looks at a radar image of precipitation, and calculates the track of the storm relative to your location. It will then calculate the ETA for precipitation based on that data. Once it starts raining, it switches to "ETA to sunny" mode (using the same technique) ... should I wait 5 minutes for the rain to stop?

Weather prediction is pretty good when it comes to 2 to 78 hour forecasts, but real time weather prediction is largely untapped.
ixnaum, Jun 24 2011

Wunderground http://radblast-mi....ightning=0&smooth=1
[Klaatu, Jun 26 2011]

The Met Office http://www.metoffic....uk/services/talkfc
Talk to a forecaster service. A bit expensive. I wonder if you can choose which forecaster you talk to? That would be cool. [DrBob, Sep 14 2011]

Dark Sky - Weather Prediction, Reinvented http://www.kickstar...diction-and-visuali
"It might tell you that it will start raining in 8 minutes, with the rain lasting for 15 minutes followed by a 25 minute break." Kickstarter project to develop an iOS app that does exactly this. [tatterdemalion, Oct 31 2011]

App predicts down to the minute when it'll rain http://whatsnext.bl...tll-rain/?hpt=hp_t3
CNN reports on the planned release of Dark Sky in March 2012 [tatterdemalion, Dec 20 2011]

Dark Sky app is out http://itunes.apple...517329357?ls=1&mt=8
iTunes link. $3.99. [tatterdemalion, Aug 15 2012]


       Weather.com gives 15 minute forecasts for the next 4 hours, typically based on zipcode. It's not exactly this, but close.   

       It's not exactly accurate either. I've found myself caught in the rain when the radar shows clear and the other way around as well.
MechE, Jun 24 2011

       // real time weather prediction is largely untapped. //   





       Phone your local airfield.   

       Widely Known To Exist for people who aren't Shambling Mouth-Breathers with Overhanging Eyebrow Ridges.
8th of 7, Jun 24 2011

       [8th], how long from now until it rains on the Borg? And cite your source. (We all know how important reliable citations are.)
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 24 2011

       I await the inclusion of barometric pressure sensors in cellphones, allowing the rapid onset detection of rainfall by falling local pressure.
csea, Jun 24 2011

       //Bollocks ... baked
I went AVMET and TAF/METAR. So, which one lets me enter my GPS coordinates and spits out rain ETA for free/cheap? None ... so where is this baked again?

//Phone your local airfield.
"Hello, I am thinking of going shopping for milk, but I am not quite sure whether it will rain. Should I go?" ... Let's say I get you on the other line and you'll answer my query politely. Why would I care that it's going to rain at my local airfield located 40 km from where I am right now? I care if it's going to rain HERE.

I'm sure there is some fancy gadget for your weather radar equipped Learjet - yey! If that makes the rest of us "Shambling Mouth-Breathers with Overhanging Eyebrow Ridges" then fine. I would rather be that than "Stuck Up Ass-Breather with Perfectly Proportioned Irrelevant Part of Human Anatomy"

Until real time prediction is:
1) local to the user
2) doesn't cost the user arm and a leg
3) readily available
... it is "largely untapped"
ixnaum, Jun 25 2011

       // how long from now until it rains on the Borg? //   

       It never rains on OUR parade ...   

       // which one lets me enter my GPS coordinates and spits out rain ETA for free/cheap? //   

       If you have GPS, let us proceed from the supposition that you have an idea where you are.   

       If you have a smartphone, it is possible to access GA AVMET via the web free of charge.   

       1. Learn to interpret the met data. 2. Get the current met data. 3. Apply that data to your own position. 4. Look up at the sky (this is a good one which many miss). 5. Take an umbrella anyway.
8th of 7, Jun 25 2011

       I think you've hit on it, [8th]. As I read it, [ixnaum] has invented an app that does steps 1 through 3 for you. The technology is there, as you have demonstrated.   

       I would be interested in such an app, I've not seen anything like it.
tatterdemalion, Jun 25 2011

       I have: it's called 'The Weather Channel' for iPad. It's free, accurate, and reliable. It is exactly like, if not the same thing as, weather.com, as previously mentioned. They take realtime weather observations from automated weather stations, local news affiliates, and other sources, combine them with sattelite and instrument data, interpret the findings, and report said findings online every 15 minutes. One day, it predicted rain at a certain hour (about three hours from the time I checked) in the valley I live in but nowhere else in this half of the state. Damned if it wasn't spot on right. If that's not realtime weather forecasting, I don't know what is.   

       Sorry about the redundant post, but it seemed to me like something got missed the first time somebody mentioned it.
Alterother, Jun 25 2011

       I can get weather radar on my computer, and have seen phones that show it.   

       I suggest a mini weather station atop each cell tower, that feeds data back to a central computer for processing, then pops a local forecast back to each cell tower. When you inquire, it feeds you the info for the tower you are using.   

       (There was an anecdote about an abrupt thunderstorm travelling across New York City back in the 1930s. Somebody got word of it by phone, did a rain dance, and won his bet.)
baconbrain, Jun 26 2011

       I can't tell if if my reading of the idea is too specific, or if others' reading of it is too general. It may be both. I've seen the apps mentioned and I'm not aware of any that will function as described in this idea - that will, for example, tell the user that it's going to rain in midtown Manhattan in 17 minutes, without the user having to look at maps or calculate wind speeds or estimate to the nearest hour, etc.   

       Perhaps I've missed it but this is not something I've found in the apps mentioned (or any others I've checked). It's a function I would be personally interested in, and if something does that now, I'd like to see it.
tatterdemalion, Jun 26 2011

       // ...rain in midtown Manhattan in 17 minutes, without the user having to look at maps or calculate wind speeds or estimate to the nearest hour, etc.   

       This is the idea - and this is not baked at all.
ixnaum, Jun 26 2011

       I see... For that, I have my left hand, which was surgically reconstructed after being crushed in a car accident in 2002 and now predicts the local weather by both hour and minute with remarkable accuracy (I'm not kidding; I've said things like "it's going to start raining in three minutes" and been accurate within 10 or 15 seconds). Unfortunately, this device is not network compatible.
Alterother, Jun 26 2011

       You could develop a mini weather station that is cellphone-linked to a central computer, and distribute units of that all over town. Anybody who wants to participate in your insta-weather service has to buy one and set it up (inputting GPS location).   

       A solar powered mini weather station should be cheap, and probably already exists. (For early rain detection, you could aim a camera at a horizontal surface, and set the computer to watch for dark spots.)
baconbrain, Jun 26 2011

       Try Weather Underground <link>. You can zoom to neighborhood level and show storm tracks. Each segment is 20 minutes. I used this when I lived in the anus of the world (Oklahoma) and I could plan trips with ease and knew when to burrow underground or carry an umbrella.   

       I still say baked.
Klaatu, Jun 26 2011

       //Then I'd say you're describing a magical function.
I don't think it's that hard. Radar images seem to show incoming precipitation quite nicely. If an area of rain is on an intercept trajectory with your GPS coordinates, it should be feasible to work out ETA. By definition real time weather prediction must be easier to accomplish than long term weather prediction. After all if I ask you, what will be the weather where you are 1 second from now (real time), chances are that even without a lot of meteorological training you will answer correctly every single time. If I ask you the same question but 1 week into the future, you won't do that great. This idea deals with sub 30 minute prediction ... and is therefore quite feasible. Analysis of incoming precipitation track as seen on radar is the key technology here .. not magic.
ixnaum, Jun 27 2011

       There's no magic. During severe weather, local television weather reports will frequently indicate the time of arrival of a severe storm at a specific location to the exact minute using their "storm tracker super doppler 9000" stuff. So this is doable, and is often done, just not in an app local to the user.
tatterdemalion, Jun 27 2011

       I like your idea because it seems to me well enough defined as a definite improvement on all of the widely used, current applications of existing technologies. It is an easy jump of faith for me to see your idea as a standard, in the near future.   

       Also, I Imagine a browser device allowed access to search histories, location, traffic, travel-pattern histories, weather, local events, itineraries, recent conversations, text messages, contact's like information and etc, being able to make better pertinent its adsmartish-funded suggestions, on the fly.
Sir_Misspeller, Jun 27 2011


       The technology is currently in initial user trials for the US and Canada and you are more than welcome to give it a try. Here's the link:   


sky, Sep 13 2011

       How this appears baked is beyond my comprehension. Yes I can look at a weather map, interpret wind direction, cloud type, moisture density, pressure, etc. Yes I can see a chance of rain on the weather channel app. Ineed, I can even look at the sky, and I often find my predictions to be quite accurate. None of the above allow me to press a button on my phone and see "Rain expected at your location in 14 minutes." Also, the accuracy of such an idea could be greatly increased if perhaps you gave the user a simple button which indicated the following "Was this prediction correct within 120 seconds? Has rain (or conversely shine) reached your location yet?" These could allow for the increased accuracy of equations used to calculate weather patterns, as well as update nearby users with more accurate information, if they were properly utilized.
KAGE, Sep 13 2011




       Or just look at the bloody sky.   


Wrongfellow, Sep 13 2011

       Why don't you just get your milk delivered, then you wouldn't have to risk going out & getting wet.
DrBob, Sep 14 2011

       [ixnaum], it's in the oven, see link. In fact it is so much like what you describe, I wondered if you had something to do with it.
tatterdemalion, Oct 31 2011

       Are there any smart-phone apps which sense whether it is raining (e.g. phone is getting wet) and relay this info to a common server? This data could be gathered to provide a real-time location-specific map.
phundug, Nov 01 2011

       Move to central Thailand, it always rains at about 4pm in the afternoon for twenty or thirty minutes, then it's the dry season, doesn't rain for three months...   

       Or Cairo, it's going to rain for five minutes sometime next January.
not_morrison_rm, Nov 02 2011

       11:31 am (local time), Jan 17, 2012, according to my right knee. Should last for just under seven minutes, probably, but my knee has been wrong before.
Alterother, Nov 02 2011

       //my knee has been wrong before.// I thought you said it was your right knee?
AusCan531, Nov 02 2011

       Yes. My right knee is the one that predicts the long-range forecast (my left hand is the 24-hour forecaster), but it is not infallible, so the statement is indeed that my right knee has occasionally been wrong.   

       My left knee is _never_ wrong, but its facility lies not in prediction of the weather.
Alterother, Nov 02 2011

       // In fact it is so much like what you describe, I wondered if you had something to do with it.
Nope ... but it doesn't surprise me. It's amazing how these days everything has been thought of by someone else. Explains why the whole idea of patents is so ridiculous these days.
ixnaum, Nov 07 2011

       So it's coming in March, according to the CNN story, $5 to $10 app for iOS devices, planning an Android version to follow.   

       Rereading this idea, I'm still surprised at how quickly folks were to dismiss it as baked- often with near-malice toward the concept - when clearly nothing like it existed.
tatterdemalion, Dec 20 2011

       Nothing that functions in the exact manner proscribed by the post exists, true, but there are many, many things that do the same thing in different ways, using sattelites, networked automated weather stations, my arthritic joints, etc. That's why we jumped all over it. That, and because it's fun to mock.
Alterother, Dec 20 2011

       I think some comments on here belong at the 'exhibition of oafish bad manners' end of mockery, not sure how that makes their poster feel superior.
Phrontistery, Aug 16 2012


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