New Versions, or “NOAA Can’t Make Up Its Mind”

Posted in Dashboard at 9:29 pm by Kamal

NOAA has yet again changed access to their maps. I have new versions of both the Dashboard and Yahoo! Widgets versions (.01) increments to compensate:

I should note that NOAA might change again in the near future. Currently, the maps for different cities are accessed in different ways. If they add to this inconsistency any more, it might become necessary to discontinue NOAA support (not to mention the fact that downloading NOAA maps is a lot slower than downloading maps from weather.com since their format change).

I should also note that I do not fault NOAA for this change in format and access. They are perfectly within their rights to change access to information on their pages without consideration of Radar In Motion, as I have no official ties with NOAA. I’ll do my best to keep up with them for now.


  1. Cerebus said,

    February 2, 2006 at 10:06 am

    Is it just me, or does the widget not handle proxies?

  2. Kamal said,

    February 2, 2006 at 1:08 pm

    No, it is not just you. I have heard from numerous people that proxies are a problem. However, I have not yet figured out a way to fix this issue. Documentation on it seems to be scarce and I am not behind any proxies to test it. If any of you know how to handle proxy servers with Javascript XMLHttpRequest objects, I’d love to hear from you.

  3. Daniel Emory said,

    February 6, 2006 at 9:14 pm

    My widget seems to be cycling rapidly through the regular image and an image without roads, highways, county and state borderlines, and the legend at the top of the screen. I tried refreshing the widget but still the same problem. Is there anyway you can fix this?

  4. Kamal said,

    February 6, 2006 at 9:15 pm

    This is an issue with weather.com. If you go to the web page and look at the animated maps on the site directly, you will notice the same behavior. I think (and very much hope) it is an issue they are working out, as the last three images for my local map have been fixed.

  5. andy said,

    February 9, 2006 at 6:34 am

    Generally great. However, there’s a problem here. I am viewing the global image using atlantic satellite; however, it shows the same as atlantic tropical. Is there a fix for this?

  6. Kamal said,

    February 9, 2006 at 7:32 am

    Actually, the atlantic satellite and the atlantic tropical satellite are different. The latter is zoomed in a bit more. Notice how you can see Mexico in one of them, but not the other.

  7. geodude said,

    February 23, 2006 at 10:37 am

    I’ve got 2.3.1. There was an alert yesterday. The alert is over but the banner at the top is still there.

  8. geodude said,

    February 23, 2006 at 12:11 pm

    I checked back later and the banner has finally vanished. Not sure what the issue was. The maps were updating successfully.

  9. Trance said,

    February 27, 2006 at 4:17 pm

    NOAA radar isn’t showing up for my area (Los Angeles). Maybe they changed something?

  10. Margot said,

    March 3, 2006 at 1:16 pm

    I can’t get local weather maps. I type in my zip code or my city and I get ‘Invalid Location’ . Apparently Los Angeles doesn’t exists or it’s a city where all weather ceases to be. So where have I been living for the past 11 years. Will this issue be fixed? Since I use this widget everyday it would be nice if it was.

  11. Kamal said,

    March 3, 2006 at 1:22 pm

    I am able to get maps from both weather.com and NOAA if I type in the location “Los Angeles, CA.” Try closing the widget and reopening it to see if that helps.

  12. Trance said,

    April 17, 2006 at 9:08 pm

    The NOAA maps now include city names, but I find this to be really annoying. Are there any plans to have an option to prevent city names from appearing? Also I find it very useful to zoom in and out on a specific location (like you can at the NOAA site) are there any plans to implement this?

  13. Kamal said,

    April 17, 2006 at 9:19 pm

    No, there are no plans to have an option to prevent city names or to zoom in/out. Preventing city names and/or any of the other overlays on the NOAA maps would, I think, be presenting too many options for something that is relatively small. If there is overwhelming desire for the city names to be removed, I can take them out period. As for zoom in/zoom out, that is actually a pretty difficult feature to implement, not to mention the fact that the image gets pretty graining as one zooms in. But thank you for the suggestions!

  14. entertainment said,

    June 21, 2006 at 4:26 am


  15. Steve said,

    August 12, 2006 at 12:17 am

    Lately, I’ve been having trouble with RIM saving every image when its in “save images for x hours” mode. So instead of just saving the new images and giving a smooth playback, you the 5 or so images added to the stack every time RIM updates itself. When it plays back, the clouds make 5 little steps forwards, then hop back and do it again. And you can see the time on the images advancing and repeating, like: 3:37, 3:54, 4:07, 4:23, 3:54, 4:07, 4:23, . . . Anyone else seeing this? I’m assuming weather.com is playing with the data format so RIM is having trouble telling which images it has stored already. I had trouble with this for about half a day a few weeks ago, but now its been happening for a couple of days. Deleting and reinstalling doesn’t help . . .

  16. Steve said,

    August 19, 2006 at 2:03 pm

    After a few days of the looping behavior where it looks like RiM can’t tell new images from the ones it already has, now its suddenly working normally again. Must be something funny about the image naming on weather.com?? Now I’m having it save 12 hours of maps – works like a champ.