Congratulations to Larry Beal and the NeonDesert.com
Weather Station in Las Vegas, Nevada, for your selection as WXForum.netís Featured Weather Web Site for Summer, 2007
Larry's website went live on November 19, 2004. As part of his weather station setup, he runs a Davis Vantage Pro2 Wireless with 24 hour FARS, a Boltek PCI lightning detector and an Optiview video camera with remote Pan/tilt control.
He uses Virtual Weather Station V13.01p09 and Weatherlink 5.7.1 (along with VirtualVP) for his main weather station software components.
He says, "I use VWS for web updates (reliable, ease of use) and Weatherlink is used as a backup." For lighting detection he uses NexStorm 184.108.40.2068 from Astrogenic Systems. Larry is also a member of StrikeStar for lightning data aggregation/display. He uses ImageSalsa and MovieSalsa to process the webcam video for still images and time-lapse movies of weather conditions.
Larry's attractive website was built using Dreamweaver 8 and Photoshop CS2. When asked what was his motivation behind having his site online, he replied "I enjoy having my weather data accessible to a 'global audience' as well as the challenge of designing, troubleshooting and implementing a website". Larry says he has "drawn upon the expertise and experience of a variety of sites" for his inspiration, and cites weatherbus.com
and saratoga-weather.org (ed. note: )
as sources for design ideas. He plans "to keep (the website) interesting, easy to use and as accessible to as wide an audience as possible". He hopes to add PDA/Cellphone friendly pages shortly.
Larry freely shares his data with CWOP, WeatherUnderground and WeatherForYou because he thinks "we (private weather sites) are providing a valuable source of weather data to the NWS and the private sector".
He first became interested in wheather when he lived in Buffalo, New York. He lived there for about 30 years and was fascinated with Lake Effect Snow and severe weather. He cited the "Blizzard of 1977
" as one of the most influential weather events during his childhood.
Larry finds the most rewarding aspect of his weather website is "the positive feedback from my local visitors and the knowledge that I'm providing a valuable service to them".
His advice to someone wanting to get started in weather watching as a hobby is short and sweet:
"Try not to get too wrapped up in having the 'Latest and the Greatest' equipment. You don't need to spend a lot of money in order to have fun!" (ed. note: True, but like other hobbies, it IS a bit addictive and seems ripe to add 'just one more thing' to the station or website, which never seems to be 'finished').
For folks just starting (or wanting to improve) their weather website, Larry offers this advice: "Don't re-invent the wheel! There are a lot of great resources out there, use them!".
Larry is 43, and has "been married to a wonderful woman for 17 years" They have 2 teenage boys, 2 cats and a great Boston Terrier! In addition to weather, he likes to build/repair PC's, and he is a huge fan of the sci-fi series Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis.
Larry thanks everyone that has taken the time to visit his site and is greatly honored at his selection.
Congratulations, Larry and the NeonDesert.com Weather Station, for being selected by your peers as WXForum.netís Featured Weather Web Site for Summer,2007! Congratulations also, to all our outstanding nominees -- your efforts have not gone unnoticed!