Redfield Weather Code now on GitHub

My code for Redfield Weather is now available on GitHub
https://github.com/erenken/redfieldweather

I had to move my secure connection strings out of the web.config and app.config files before I could post this online.  I decided to try Azure Key Vault as I am already hosting my site on Azure.  I have to say this was really easy to use and worked perfectly.  Azure doesn’t appear to have a UI for it yet in the portal, but the PowerShell commands were easy enough.  Using the Application Settings for the website in the Azure portal is a nice secure way for me to store my client ID, secret, and URI.

I am going to try to bring Key Vault to some work projects.

My project is also using some PHP code that I got from www.bordersweather.co.uk.  This is for a new lightening detection project I am a part of.  It use Time of Arrival (TOA) to calculate a lightening strike.  It is pretty cool stuff.  You can learn more about it at microsferics.com.  This code is not included in my project because I don’t own it.  I am trying to see if the developer is willing to post his code on GitHub and then I can link to it.  I have also added a Azure WebJob to my project so it will create the time-lapse GIF used by the PHP code.  You can see the time-lapse lightening map at http://www.redfieldweather.com/#/Maps and go down to the Lightning Timelapse microDLN section.

One of my goals is to replace the PHP code with a pure AngularJS and WebAPI site and do as much of it as I can in the AngularJS.  I am waiting for ASP.NET Core to be released before I start this project.  I will do it as a another re-write of the site.  I will also look at AngularJS 2.0 and Material design at the time.

Redfield Weather Updated

I have been working really hard on my updated weather website for the last month.  It is totally new from the ground up.  I will be adding more features so please check it out.

You can view the site at www.redfieldweather.com

I have replaced the old Weather Flash ASP page that took data from Virtual Weather Station and replaced it with an API.NET WebAPI backend.  Instead of writing to a file it is now storing the data in Azure Table Storage.  This will allow me to plot and show history from my own data.  I won’t need to count on Weather Underground for that anymore.

The site is built on top of AngularJS 1.5 using a component model.  It is also using Bootstrap to give it a responsive layout and I think it looks pretty good on a phone.

I am now working on a way to display the historical data that I have collected since I have moved to this new model.  I am first working on some graphs using the D3JS framework.  I will also be bringing back the weather maps and lightning maps that my weather station creates.

If you have any feedback or suggestions, please let me know in the comments section.  This is a web technologies testbed project for me using my hobby of weather as the subject.  I do plan on open sourcing the code for this project at a later date.

Lots Happening

I just wanted to write an update on some of the projects I have listed on my site. 

  • Redfield Weather
    • I am in the process of re-writing the site.  I am going to try an AngularJS application for this.  The site is currently down because my web provider has been so unreliable lately.  I am moving it to Azure.  I have already transisioned this site to Azure and everything looks good so far.  Since I am using my own domains Azure will cost me more than my old provider but at least it will be reliable.  I will post updates on the development of the site as I have them.  I hope to have something at least up by the end of this weekend.
  • HAM Application
    • I was initialiiy working on this application as a Windows Phone 7 application.  Well it has been very slow going.  I am now working on making this a Universal Windows Playform (UWP) application.  That way it will run on Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Permits365
    • This is an application I am slowly working on to help document and track permits for people like electirical, building and plumbing inspectors.  I haven’t given up on it yet.  Just haven’t had time to work on it.

There is alot of comments about not having time.  That is something I hope to fix this year.  I have so much I want to do and so much I want to still learn.  I need to find time, but when I do find time I sort of feel bad for not working on projects for work.  I do need to keep the lights and the internet on.  Well here is hoping for a good year of geting stuff done.

Redfield Weather Code Now on Codeplex

I have published the code for my weather website on Codeplex.  This is my first project on Codeplex.  I hope to get a lot of great feedback and maybe even some people will want to use the code for the base for their own weather website.  The code includes all the ASPX and the supporting DLLs that I have also previously made available for download from my site.

The code should work with any zip code for forecasts and any personal weather stations that are sending data to Weather Underground.  It defaults to my zip code 49120 and personal weather station ID KMINILES3.  The constructors for the objects should take a zip code or station ID.  I don’t have any documentation on using the code, but now that all the code is available I hope developers will find most of it self documenting.  I try to be really good about using descriptive class and variable names.

Well if you are interested in the downloading the code you can get it from here http://redfieldweather.codeplex.com

Weather Spotter

SkywarnLogoTxtOutln2I took a basic weather spotter class in Edwardsburg, MI on March 31st.  I want to take the advanced training next year.

If you are interested in spotter training you should contact your local Warning Coordination Meteorologist.  For my area you can get more information about Skywarn at the Northern Indiana NWS Skywarn Information website.

You might be thinking why should I do this? We have modern equipment and RADAR. Why do they still need weather spotters? Well after going to this class you will know why. Radar really has a lot of limitations. It takes about 5 minutes to get an image and at about 50 miles out from the radar it can’t see anything under 3500 feet. Think about that for a few minutes. If you have low level rotation in the storm it is possible that the radar can’t see it and a lot can happen in 5 minutes. Early warning is what saves lives and as a spotter you could help. It only takes about 3 hours out of your life.

I have also updated my weather site Redfield Weather with a bunch of interesting links I got at the spotter training class.  You can get to those links here, http://www.redfieldweather.com/NOAA/Default.aspx.  I also made several other updates.  I have updated the regional radar map to a larger animated image and I also added an animated lightning strike map that is populated from my lightning detector.

Updated Weather Site

So I finally got around to updating my weather site, www.redfieldweather.com.  It has been something I have been wanting to do for a while.  I couldn’t update it for the longest time because my hosting provider didn’t want to install ASP.NET 4.0 until they made sure it was stable.  They just got my site switched over to ASP.NET 4.0 this month.

My new site has a what I think is a cool Silverlight control that shows the current weather conditions.  It is updated every 5 seconds so it should only be a few seconds behind what my weather station is showing at home.  Now my next big challenge is to rebuild my weather computer.  I get random crashes in the Virtual Weather Station software I use and that computer has been running pretty much non stop since I installed my weather station back in 2005.

I have completely changed the layout of the site as well so any comments would be greatly appreciated.

Current Weather Conditions Page

Shows the current weather conditions using the new Silverlight control and if there are any current weather alerts they will be right under the current conditions.  Today’s current forecast is displayed right under that and then some basic almanac data is displayed.

Forecast

Shows the 6 day weather forecast

Weather Maps

Displays weather maps of the area and region including lightning strike data

I am sharing the objects I have created with anyone who wants to use them.  You can download them from here:  RedfieldWeather.zip  These objects use the API-XML Feeds from Weather Underground.  These objects are not yet complete.  As I add more functionality and complete missing functionality I will update the file and my blog.  By downloading and using these objects you agree to not hold Demiurge Software LLC liable.  You use these objects freely and may redistribute them freely.  I may also include the source code in later versions.

I currently don’t have any sample code on how to use them, but I will be working on that for a future post.  Right now I just wanted to get the word out that the site has finally been updated.

UPDATED (3/14/2011):  I have fixed the link to the RedfieldWeather.zip file.

Updating Redfield Weather

Well it has been a long time since I have posted anything to my blog.  Things have been very busy, and I am very excited about the updates to www.redfieldweather.com that are coming.  One of the big things I am waiting for is my hosting provider to start support ASP.NET 4.0.  I am using the new framework in my site and I am adding Silverlight (www.silverlight.net).  I am very excited about what I am doing with Silverlight.  I am working on some cool user controls.  I do plan on making the Silverlight controls I have created freely available.

Here is an example of what my current conditions screen is going to look like

.newweather

My plan is to integrate weather alerts/warning for the area as well as forecasts.  I am also thinking about using Bing maps (maps.bing.com) and displaying the lighting data.  I would love to find a good source to weather radar images I could overlay on Bing maps, but I don’t know of one.

I am also planning on releasing a Windows Phone 7 (www.windowsphone7.com) application near or at release.  It just depends on how mature the SDK for it is before release and how much time I have.  With these Silverlight controls I have created for my website it should be really easy for me to get a Windows Phone 7 application out as they can share a lot of the same code.

Well that is it for know, but I hope to be posting more as this project moves on.  I am very excited about Silverlight and Windows Phone 7.

Redfield Weather

I have become a real big weather buff over the last couple of years.  I have a Davis Vantage Pro2 station on the roof.  All of my data is live on the Internet at www.redfieldweather.com and the Weather Underground at, http://www.wunderground.com/weatherstation/WXDailyHistory.asp?ID=KMINILES3.

I bought the Davis Vantage Pro2 a couple years ago now, and last year I added a Boltek Lightning detector.  That data is also pushed to my web site and to StrikeStarUS.

redfieldweather1

This picture is of my weather station computer and you can also see my FT-8900R radio along with the HRI-100 that connects it to WiRES-II.

The top monitor shows my lightening data and WASP2.  WASP2 is an application that displays data from StrikeStarUS and also display Doppler RADAR images.  WASP2 creates the main image on the top of my web page at www.redfieldweather.com.

The bottom monitor displays all the data collected from the Davis Vantage Pro2.  The software is Virtual Weather Station, not the coolest looking software but it does give me a lot of data and a lot of images that can be used on my web site.

Here is a very cold picture of the weather station in the ice we had earlier this year on 1-15-2007.

redfieldweather2

I also have a weather radio on my desk that is streaming the local NOAA weather radio to the weather underground.  You can listen to the stream here.  The weather radio also has an LED strobe attached to it, so when there is a weather alert the LED will flash.

My wife makes fun of me, but I think all this is cool.  I love computers and stuff that can connect to them.  Not a cheap hobby but a fun one none the less.