Forecasts and Radar

libgweather's primary source of weather information is the US National Weather Service, which gathers reports of current weather conditions in METAR format from around the world, and makes them all available via ftp and http.

Unfortunately, there is not a corresponding worldwide source of weather forecast information, so as of GNOME 2.24, libgweather forecasting is limited to the US, UK, and Australia, and radar images in the gweather applet are available only for the US.

How to Get Forecast or Radar Data for Your Country

There is lots of weather data on the web, and several sites that offer weather forecasts for the whole world. But basically all commercial weather sites have terms of service that wouldn't allow us to screenscrape them from libgweather, so this doesn't help us.

However, many governments provide weather data for their country, and make it either completely-freely-redistributable, or else at least freely-redistributable-for-non-commercial-use. This is the case with the forecast sources we're using now (the US NWS data is public domain, and the UK MetOffice and Australian BoM data is free-for-non-commercial-use).

So, to get forecasts and/or radar images for your country:

  1. Find a freely-usable weather source for your country (most likely some sort of government agency, or perhaps a major news provider). It needs to actually explicitly say that the data is freely usable for any purpose (or at least "for non-commercial purposes", or something similar). The ideal weather source:
    • Returns forecast data in a programmatically parseable format (eg, XML, JSON, CSV, whatever. Just not free text.)
    • Can generate a forecast based on latitude and longitude, rather than needing city names, or worse, obscure region identifiers
  2. If the web site is in English (or at least, has a complete English translation), then you're pretty much done, and can just file a bug pointing to it

  3. If not, file a bug anyway, but you'll need to translate some info, describing how to get a forecast/radar image for a given city, and explaining the sites terms of service. Don't spend too much time translating right away, since we don't really know totally for sure at this point what information we'll end up needing, and we can always just ask you more questions later.

Projects/LibGWeather/ForecastsAndRadar (last edited 2013-11-22 18:58:00 by WilliamJonMcCann)