Reworking my weather website

Reworking my weather website

Usually, I keep my “bigger” projects out of my personal blog but maybe it’s time to change that. Since 2007, I’m running “The Finnish Weather Center”, a website which provides free weather maps and a little bit of background info for storm chasers and others who are interested in (severe) weather. Already a year ago, I had some ideas and started to redesign the website which to date is running on Joomla. It quickly turned out that the ideas I had required much more than a simple redesign of the website and due to the amount of work and my lack of time, I shelved the project then.

During recent months, I picked up quite a bit of docker knowledge and also some more Javascript, so I decided to give it another look and it does look a bit more promising now. Promising enough, at least, that I moved the project to it’s own domain:

While the old UI would show you discrete maps for each parameter on different pages, the new UI is based on the Open Source map display web app Leaflet. Basically, the whole screen is a huge map and you chose what you want to see (aka overlay) on that map. I personally like this approach much more and the analysis workflow seems much more fluent to me this way.

When it comes to Javascript, I’m still pretty much a novice and I’m learning as I go. I also have to redo a big part of the map rendering backend because the one I use now, GrADs, doesn’t really work for the new pipeline, so I have to write my own rendering backend for which I chose GDAL as a base. So things are moving slowly - but they are moving.

Feel free to hop by and have a look! You can comment and discuss the changes on the facebook page of the project.