I’ve dumped the Weather.com site and couldn’t be happier! I’m so glad the Weather Channel sent me that survey… talk about unintended consequences.
Like a lot of folks, I began using the Weather Channel’s internet site as my primary source for weather information way back when it was about the best site for weather information.
However, over time Weather.com has become bloated with all kinds of “junk links”, pop-ups and other spam to the point where it takes forever to load and, moreover, it’s rare that you can simply get what you need to know from a single page visit. Imagine that? By design, the site is designed to generate revenue based on page visits and “hits” to all of the crap sites that are linked off the site and they’ve figured out how to make users maximize the number of pages or links that they have to open to get enough useful information.
What I liked about weather.com was the weather radar views they provided and the ability to have snap-shots of several different places at the top of the page so I could see what the weather was at my folk’s place up in Pennsylvania, my sister’s place near Chicago and the place I’d rather be: Key West.
So, I basically put up with all the crap that came along with that useful information. However, when I really needed accurate forecast information, I’d always go to the U.S. Government’s National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) site, as they are the Wall Street Journal of weather reporting: detailed, accurate facts… no spin.
So, the other day I was asked to take a survey by Weather.com. I typically delete these things but this time I decided to take the survey. What was interesting was that as I answered each question I began to realize just how much I disliked their internet site. By the time I was done and had submitted the survey I’d decided it was time to break my habit of visiting weather.com and did some exploring on the NOAA site to see everything they had to offer. It was a no-brainer, I deleted the link to weather.com.
My favorite feature on the NOAA site has become the hourly weather graphs; hey, I’m a visual learner. Seeing a temperature plot in parallel with humidity, cloud cover, rain fall, etc. all on one page covering a 48-hour period gives me everything I need to know near-term in a few moments; what could be better?
As for extended forecasts, NOAA provides a summary of what’s ahead but you can also go to the Forecast Discussion where they provide that “Wall Street Journal” level of detail regarding the forecast, to include the probability factors and other conditions that are subject to change. All-in-all, I now find that the forecast information I get from NOAA is a heck of a lot more accurate and useful than Weather.com ever was. I’ve also found that their weather radar, while not as “slick” and enhanced as Weather.com, is well… the exact same thing. It’s not like weather radars are all that different; it’s just how they choose to colorize, smooth and animate that makes them appear different.
Anyway, just thought I’d share my early Christmas present. As another friend noted, weather sites & apps are like “Geezer Porn” for people like us who ride motorcycles and bicycles year round: we just can’t get enough and find ourselves hitting those sites all the time. Just glad that I’ve now found one I like. How, if only I could link my Verizon phone to a NOAA app instead of AccuWeather!
Note: Credit for Geezer Porn goes to our friends Zack & Bobby who I believe had the original exchange this past October down in Panama City Beach!