With Florence battering the US and Typhoon Manghkut bearing down on the Philippines, it’s a good time to take a look at the art of visualizing predicted paths. (By the way, did you know that “typhoon”, “hurricane” and “cyclone” are just different names for the same weather phenomenon?) Flowing Data has a good overview of the ways media have been visualizing the predicted path (hat tip: reader MB), including this animation from Axios which does a good job of demonstrating the uncertainty in the forecast:


A good thing to be aware of, though, is that the cones around the predicted tracks do not represent the size of the storm, but rather the uncertainty in the position of the center of the storm.

For a “live” view though, the place I like to look at is the global wind visualization from the Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network. Here’s how Florence looks at this writing (3:45AM East Coast time). Click the image to see the current animated view.


That’s all from us at the blog for this week. For those in the path of the storms, good luck and stay safe. 


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