Congratulations to Chris Crowe and Christchurch Weather Live
for your selection as WXForum.net Featured Weather Website for Summer, 2011
Chris started in late 2008 or early 2009 when a colleague at work purchased a weather station back in 2007 and Chris helped get it online. Chris says "I felt I could do a better User Interface so I convinced my colleague to send me his data once per minute and it started from there."
The station producing the data is a Davis Vantage Pro 2 Wireless. There are UV and Solar sensors and a daytime radiation shield. The station owner had researched the market and had found the Davis Vantage Pro 2 to be the best in quality and functionality at the time.
The station owner uses Weather Display as he believed that was the best, and most used in the market. Chris' website is 100% custom written in c#/asp.net
Chris uses Visual Studio as his development environment connecting to a MS SQL Server 2008 database and the code is ASP.NET using c#
His motivation behind having a weather website online was simple: "I thought I could do better than what I had seen online, and I like to play around with the visuals so my pages are pretty unique and unlike most other sites. Microsoft Live (back in 2008) inspired me with the original page background style. The actual layout of the home page was a modification of a Vista Gadget I wrote for my colleagues site - http://weather.cobbnz.com/
". (Ed note: Many of the Weather-Display users have Chris' Vista Gadget
as a valued part of their sidebar, me included. Thanks for that, Chris!)
Chris has purchased his own Davis Vantage Pro 2 6163 - He has now written his own software to talk to the Data Logger and save this to a database and is calculating aggregate data every minute. He is in the process of writing a new web site as well, in the end it will be 100% of his own data and code.
He is not currently sending his weather data to CWOP, Weather Underground, etc., but when his new site is complete, that will happen. He says, "Community is important to me."
He first got interested in weather when a colleague purchased a weather station in 2007 and Chris helped develop that website and the passion grew from there. Now Chris spends quite a bit of his time thinking about weather and visiting WXForum! (Ed note: glad to have you here!)
Chris' most rewarding experience in having a weather web site is "knowing what is going on at a glance, and of course having a nice community of people to post questions to and be part of. Weather people all like to share - it seems like we are all happy to share which is great!"
His advice to someone wanting to get started in weather watching as a hobby is "Look into the forums and post questions, people are more than willing to help. Have a budget, and research the market and what that budget will get you. Do you want to see the data yourself or post online? You can do it quite cheaply or spend a lot. Join a forum ... Don't just look but try to participate, people love to help."
"I personally like a clean look, make sure it looks good, test it in different browsers. Make sure it works for you #1. Then show and share with the world. My personal tip is: does it look good? "
Chris lives in Christchurch, New Zealand, and is a Software Engineer / DBA. He lives with his partner Pam, and they have two Rottweiler's, two Abyssinian Cats, and also has Tropical Fish. He enjoys wine, good food and cooking. He was a Microsoft MVP for about 13 years.
He also has an Earthquake site that has proved to be very popular locally in the last year or so. "We have experienced a lot of Earthquakes over the last 13 months - 1 x 7 Mag, 2 * 6 Mag, 29 * 5 Mag, 323 * 4 Mag, and 1000's of Mag 3. The quake site was originally a few pages on my weather site but it started to consume my whole internet allowance in a few days so it has to be moved. It can be viewed at http://quake.crowe.co.nz/
, it has consumed quite a lot of my time over the last year as well."
In closing, Chris says: "Thanks to everyone who voted and just think, you may be next to win!"
Congratulations Chris, for your selection as WXForum.net Featured Weather Website for Summer, 2011, and a hearty congratulations to the other nominees as well!
All of your sites are an inspiration to us all.