Archive for July, 2008|Monthly archive page
For an extended period between Saturday and Sunday, some of you may have noticed that the landmass images for our tracking map were failing to appear.
We traced the problem back to Amazon.com, whose Simple Storage Service (S3) experienced an outage during the same period. This failure on Amazon’s part meant that we could not deliver map images to anyone visiting our site or viewing the map on PalmBeachPost.com. This was particularly ill-timed given the need to track Tropical Storm Dolly and Tropical Storm Cristobal.
The problem was resolved by Amazon engineers at 8:12pm (Eastern) Sunday evening. We at Stormpulse.com have also taken steps so that in the event of another Amazon failure, we will still be able to deliver these images.
Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks for using Stormpulse.com.
UPDATE: Since writing this blog post, we have implemented a failover system such that future S3 outages will not impact our ability to show our basic map tiles. Thanks again for your patience.
We are very happy to be able to take a step forward in getting our tracking map in front of a larger audience, and the Post is happy to receive a major upgrade to their storm mapping displays. This enhancement also coincides with what is turning out to be an active July, with Tropical Depression Three forming as I write this.
“BERTHA’S INTENSIFICATION TO MAJOR HURRICANE TODAY HIGHLIGHTS THE DIFFICULTIES OF FORECASTING RAPID INTENSITY CHANGES.”
I wonder if this difficulty will ever go away through sheer computing power, or if something a bit more human is required. Could human-consensus forecasting address this weakness? Still unproven, but it seems worth a shot.
Tropical Storm Bertha, considered yesterday an almost certain fish-spinner, continues to head west, and her turn to the open Atlantic appears a bit delayed and a bit less severe than originally forecast.
Still, sea surface temperatures remain too cool for rapid intensification (mid-Atlantic buoy 41041 reports 79.52 degrees F), but she should hit warmer waters by Wednesday (80-82F). By that time, if she follows the official NHC forecast path, she will be approximately 1300 miles east-southeast of Miami. She is presently 2395 miles east-southeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico.