Mysteries of our new weather page
I've been getting some comments and questions from readers who are trying (as I am) to get acquainted with The Sun's new online weather page. It's not always very intuitive and takes some exploration to master. Nobody briefed me, either, so I'm learning right along with you. Here are some of the issues you've raised, what we're doing, and a few tips for users:
THE RADAR SCREEN: A number of readers are disappointed in the new screen because it doesn't display well on mobile phones. Others complain they can't see the storms, or can't get the images to animate so that it shows how the storms have moved.
THE FIX: The new format indeed does not work well on mobile phones. But we are working on apps that should fix the problem. They will be available within a month, I'm told.
The radar will show the storms, but you need to click on the "Weather" tab, and select either "National" or "Super local res" to make them appear.
And to animate the storms, you need to click on the tiny triangle at the top of the "Radar transparency" slide-bar on the left-hand side of the screen. It may have a little digital clock beside it. That triangle is a "Play" button, I've discovered, and it will activate a 30-minute sequence of radar returns. When the animation is running, the button becomes a "Pause" button - two vertical bars. Click on it and the screen will freeze again. The animation may take a few seconds to load.
TODAY'S FORECAST: A reader pointed out that our big 7-day forecast showed current conditions, but did not provide today's forecast. You could find one below, on the hourly forecast module, but it was a schlep to get there and required you to scroll through to right hour.
THE FIX: We have added a "Today's Forecast" tab, right below the 7-day forecast. Click it and you'll see current conditions, with the forecast high and low, and the forecast for the rest of the day and tomorrow.
MOONRISE: The new page gives sunset and sunrise times, but the moon got left out.
THE FIX: We hope to provide daily moonrise and moonset times soon.
WEATHER ALMANAC: On the old page, readers could click on "Detailed history" and find a tool that would show weather data for any day since BWI became the city's station of record in 1950. (Actually, I think it used to go back to 1948.) But it's missing from the new almanac module.
THE FIX: We are working on it and expect to get that feature back soon.
Thanks again for your patience as we roll out the new weather page, work out the kinks and add the features readers want. - Frank
(SUN PHOTO: Larry C. Price, 1997)