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Posted at 6:15 PM ET, 12/ 1/2010

The new Washington Post Weather website

By Jason Samenow
weather-page-v1.jpg
Partial screen shot of the new Washington Post Weather website.

We are thrilled to unveil the brand new Washington Post Weather website (washingtonpost.com/weather). Designed to be useful, dynamic, interactive and entertaining, we hope to bring you the most compelling weather content for the D.C. metro region and beyond.

Unlike previous versions of the Washington Post weather website and many weather websites elsewhere, this page will be curated each day by weather professionals rather than solely by a computer. In this case, the Capital Weather Gang is your website host.

Let me walk you through some of the features, starting from the top:

*Seven day and hourly forecasts: We've developed a simple interface to quickly get a seven day forecast for any zipcode or city, state search. We also include a tab to get the hourly forecast for the next 24 hours. These forecasts originate from National Weather Service data. Coming soon: the ability to search international locations as well.

*Capital Weather Gang gateway: Here we include summary text from the latest CWG forecast as well as links to recent CWG posts, features, and tools. This gateway will be updated daily.

*Weather Wall: This is the "heart" of the page with a number of different views for accessing radar and satellite imagery, current weather conditions, a live view of the National Mall, and much more. Several of these views are interactive allowing you to pan and zoom, and add and subtract layers. Some of the views on this wall will change according to season. For example, right now we feature a "Snow/ski" view which provides access to ski resort information and snow conditions, a snow cover overlay, snow potential overlays and more. During tropical season, we'll add interactive hurricane tracking. Finally, in time, we plan to integrate additional maps, multimedia and imagery into this wall. Click on the "i" icon in the upper right hand corner of the wall to learn more about using the interactive maps (or iMAPs). Be patient in allowing the interactive maps to load (they use Flash).

*Weather on Twitter: In this area, we've aggregated some of the best local and national weather Twitter feeds so you can keep your hands on the pulse of the weather world. Some of the Twitter feeds are from big weather companies like The Weather Channel and AccuWeather; others are personalities such as Doug Hill, Topper Shutt and Jim Cantore. CWG's Twitter feed is also integrated into this. The tweets in this area will change constantly.

*Featured Comments: Here we highlight some of the most interesting, insightful, and/or entertaining comments from Capital Weather Gang readers, Twitter followers and Facebook fans. We'll update this every day or so.

*D.C. Area Weather Meters: This is a mix of health and lifestyle indices to help you judge how the weather will make you look and/or feel when you head out. Some of these originate from government agencies, like the UV and Air Quality Index. Others were developed by the Capital Weather Gang, such as the Golf Comfort Index and Hair Quality Index. We'll be developing more of these over time. Feel free to comment with your requests for meters.

*The Nation's Weather: This is a daily summary of weather across the U.S. from Weather Underground via the Associated Press.

*Weather News: Here we aggregate weather and climate news stories making headlines from newspapers and blogs from the around the world.

*D.C. Area Almanac: Access the averages and records for our three local airports for any day of the year.

*Moon Phase: A graphic representation of the current moon phase.

*Today in Weather History: Each day, we'll provide a snippet about some major weather event or climate factoid from D.C.'s weather past.

*Watches and Warnings: Here all active watches and warnings for the D.C. area will appear. Click on any advisory, and the advisory text from the National Weather Service will appear in a pop-up window.

In addition to all of these features, on the right side of the page underneath the advertisement, we provide many ways for you to stay connected with Washington Post Weather and the Capital Weather Gang through social media and e-mail updates.

Over time, we plan to continue adding features to enhance your weather experience. We view this as a first step in building a next generation weather page. We welcome and encourage your comments and feedback.

By Jason Samenow  | December 1, 2010; 6:15 PM ET
Categories:  Capital Weather Gang, Latest  
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Comments

Jason:
I look forward to the new format!!!

It has been a busy summer, but I am back in the saddle.

For snowlovers, watch out later Sat. and Sat. night.

The ECMWF, GGEM, NAM and GFS all support a light event across W. Va. into central Va., perhaps 1 - 3 inches in favored areas.

Good Luck and GodSpeed!!!!!!!!

Posted by: AugustaJim | December 1, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

New online site looks nice. Now if you can do something about the seriously lame WP print edition weather page, which was "downsized" a few years ago. The NYTimes print weather page is much more user friendly and has included YTD snow totals. And, very importantly, the NYTimes includes the previous day temps for cities and precip, along with today and tomorrow's predicted temps. Much preferable to what the Post offers.

Re: CWG, the text of articles by CWG posters, especially Jason, has loosened up in the past week or so. The articles are more enjoyable, and still meaty.

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | December 1, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Looking forward to another winter of informative weather information!

Posted by: rosilandjordan | December 1, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

Nice. Now if we could get a more mobile friendly version of this page things would be perfect :)

Posted by: Snowlover2 | December 1, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

I guess I'm confused. Will the CWG page still exist as is? Is this is another page The Post will offer, or does this replace CWG?

Posted by: weathergrrl | December 1, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Love the new site, especially the DC Area Almanac. It's nice that with the click of a button you can view the record high and low temperatures for any particular date. My only suggestion would be to take DST into account when displaying sunrise/set times, so as not to confuse readers when they are looking at the page between mid-March and early November.

@JerryFloyd1: Definitely agree with you on the WP print page. The NY Times page has a more comprehensive national outlook and I was disappointed when the Post eliminated the previous day's temperatures for national and international cities.

Posted by: meteorolinguist | December 1, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

@weathergrrl

This appears to be a separate weather page with more of a traditional forecast format and less written commentary.

Posted by: meteorolinguist | December 1, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

@meteorolinguist
that's what I thought. thanks. New page looks good too!

Posted by: weathergrrl | December 1, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Welcome back, Augusta Jim!

Posted by: weathergrrl | December 1, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

@weathergrrl

@meteorolinguist is correct. The new Washington Post weather website is both a complement to and a gateway to CWG, which isn't going anywhere.

Thanks to everyone for their feedback so far. Keep it coming - positive, negative or otherwise.

Posted by: Dan-CapitalWeatherGang | December 1, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

I like the new page - especially being able to toggle back and forth between hourly and daily forecasts. The only thing I'm disappointed in is that the "DC Area Almanac" doesn't tell you how much (rain inches equivalent) precipitation fell. We have a vegetable garden and sometimes want to know if we need to water, and don't know how much may have fallen overnight, etc.

But very nice job overall!

Posted by: B2O2 | December 1, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Echoing Dan, thanks for the feedback so far. We're viewing this as a first edition and really hope to make this a more useful and rich resource over time. So we welcome your ideas.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | December 1, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to see a nearly seamless interface between the WP online weather page and CWG, so it isn't necessary to jump between two sites. And do this without cluttering either page. I realize it may take a while to align both pages.

For now, CWG is definitely where the action is and the only other places I go are Mosaic, the NWS page for historical information, NAM, GEF [although when things are popping CWG and/or another poster adds these links], and Accuweather for the often inaccurate two-week forecast).

As previously noted, the WP print edition weather page is also important and needs a major revamp.

Posted by: JerryFloyd1 | December 1, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

I've been coming in straight through the CWG page for the last year or more, but the new front page looks nice. I agree with B2O2 about the precip (and/or general climatology) data - would be really nice to find things (even if it's just a text link to take me there) such as:

*Rainfall day/month/year vs. normal

*Tides (particularly during the summer - there are a lot more boaters and kayakers every year on the Potomac, it seems that tide data is buried deeper and deeper in otherwise very useful weather pages)

*Text links to ski or beach forecasts

*The Watches/Warning page is a little confusing, but that's probably because there's nothing going on as I write this.
Will the jurisdictions light up in red when something is going on? Would it be easier and take up less space to only list jurisdictions with active warnings, and a graphic for watches, which normally cover most or all of the area?

Hope this is constructive, I do love the work you guys do... :)

Posted by: vtavgjoe | December 1, 2010 11:32 PM | Report abuse

How about a Snow Blog?

In addition to the things one would expect, you could have folks share their storm stories, etc.

Call it "SnowCap!"

Posted by: jaybird926 | December 2, 2010 7:10 AM | Report abuse

When clicking on "Weather" from the main Washington Post home page, it still takes you to the same old weather page. Why not link to this new page instead? You shouldn't have to go to the "local" homepage first. Actually, the only way I got to this new page was through the link in your article. Great upgrade.

Posted by: alrob8 | December 2, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

@alrob8

Thanks for the note. There are a couple of links that got passed over when changing everything to redirect to the new page, including that one. Should be fixed soon.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | December 2, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

my favorite parts of that new page are the "golf comfort" and "hair quality" indexes... hair quality... that's funny.

one thing i worry about is diluting things. i love being able to come to CWG for everything weather-related. i don't want to have to go to two sites... (it even annoys me a bit here when there are people posting on several threads... but that's another topic...) i kind of thought CWG was the post's weather page... i appreciate dan's assurance that CWG "isn't going anywhere".

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | December 2, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

I totally love the hair index. If you saw me right now you would see just how accurate that measurement is.

Posted by: LCFC | December 2, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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