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11/25/2013
11:00 AM
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Big Data Reshapes Weather Channel Predictions

The Weather Company builds a new forecasting platform using Basho's Riak NoSQL database and Amazon Web Services.

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D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
11/25/2013 | 11:14:48 AM
The Weather Company still uses one of everything
It's not that Riak is replacing every database at The Weather Company. It still has "one of everything" in use -- including Cassandra, MySQL, MongoDB and more. It's just that Riak is the choice for the new, mega-scale SUN platform. Hadoop is also in use, but for high-scale analytics, not real-time weather data ingest and prediction.
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
11/25/2013 | 11:24:00 AM
Re: The Weather Company still uses one of everything
Sounds like an on-the-job big data master's degree for people who get to work on the Weather Channel's big data team. Quite the diverse tech portfolio. They must be drowning in resumes.
cbabcock
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cbabcock,
User Rank: Strategist
11/25/2013 | 1:48:14 PM
Basho Riak gets some respect
Basho's Riak is probably one of the most underestimated systems, for the reasons Bryson Koehler suggests: simplicity, ease of administration and multiple data center replication. Not surprising to find Bryson, formerly of InterContinental Hotels, on this pioneering front.
Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
11/30/2013 | 1:42:01 PM
It's working
Whatever they are doing, it is certainly working. I've noticed that in the last year or so, weather predictions have been uncannily accurate. They still do miss now and again, but  whether it's snow in Boston or hurricanes in the Midwest, people who pay close attention to the Weather Company's clients are seldom surprised.
jgherbert
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jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
11/30/2013 | 8:51:28 PM
Re: It's working
@Gary_EL: Interesting -- my own observation is that the weather forecasts around Atlanta have been getting progressively worse. In particular the 5-day forecast, which used to be reasonably accurate, has been further and further from reality as time goes on. I don't think that necessarily says that the modeling is getting worse, so much as that we're seeing weather patterns that are far more unpredictable, and we simply don't have the historical data to compare against, so the models can't do such a good job.
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