I had never heard of ‘www.windy.com’ before the Hurricane Irma United States landfall. My brother mentioned it while discussing Irma. A surfer and fisherman, he uses it regularly to forecast weather, wind, and waves. Later that day, a friend tracking the storm from Florida told me to check out windy.com while mentioning the sites awesome graphics.
Due to Hurricane Irma I had an immediate interest in what the site could offer. Because I fish, I was also intrigued. Furthermore, weather affects construction and I wondered what new and improved features this site might possess. As a result of their information, I visited the site.
ConstructionWeather Forecast History vs. ‘www.windy.com’
While exploring ‘www.windy.com’ for the first time, I recalled weather forecasting during my career. My construction career started In the early seventies. Then weather forecasters of dubious meteorological expertise read from handheld copy, occasionally pointing to a static weather map. These maps showed areas of high and low pressure and associated fronts. I remember one forecaster that had magnetic suns and clouds that he positioned as forecasted. Before heading to the job I tuned-in to these forecasts in order to plan my construction day. I was often disappointed.
Cable stations, in particular, the Weather Channel revolutionized weather reporting. The Weather Channel offered 24/7 weather. It broadcast the first weather satellite imagery that I can remember. “Local on the eights” gave National Weather Service forecasts and radar imagery all day long. Still, the television was primarily at home.
The turn of the century brought internet weather forecasting. Weather checks were as fast as your ISP delivered. Computers were fixtures in offices and weather forecasts were a click away.
Smartphones deliver real-time weather forecasts to the field. Those raised with these devices underappreciate their convenience.
‘www.windy.com’ – Features
‘www.Windy.com’ offers awesome graphics. I showed the site to my wife. She said, “Whoooaaaa!”. Then, she did as I did when I first visited the site. She played with it for the next half-hour.
These graphics open to a worldwide view or drill down to local views sufficient to identify property parcels and labeled roads. The map scrolls east/west or west/east. This scroll circumnavigates the weather world.
The map displays wind, precipitation and accumulation, temperature, cloud cover, pressure, waves, weather radar and more. These selected options are selected from a vertical menu on the right and can be toggled on and off.
The site allows customization of reported data, for example, mph instead of knots or inches instead of millimeters. Settings are on the menu. The menu occurs in the upper left-hand corner.
All of these features are forecasted for the next 240 hours. The next ten dates show in a bar across the bottom of the screen. A click on the date brings you to the forecasted map for that date.
The above views are available from the NAM3km, ECMWF and GFS22km models
Set up favorites locations, Get spot reports of wind and temperature. The site locates airports, paragliding and windsurfing hot spots, and webcams. Click on these spots for additional local details.
To appreciate the site you must visit.