Understanding Stormy Weather

Leave a comment


The science behind it

After forces of nature have battered the Eastern seaboard of the US, leaving mass destruction in their wake, first I send warm internet wishes to everyone affected: some have lost their lives; some have lost their homes; many more have been impacted in some significant way.

Even while somber about the human toll, we recognize that hurricanes and other natural disasters, in their strength and ferocity, leave us in awe. And as is true for so many subjects, the web offers opportunities for understanding. Take for example these sites, which convey basic information about hurricanes and weather in general:

The History Channel’s “Science of a Hurricane” video (scroll down to see other “Science of” videos):

Discovery.com’s “Stunning Map of Sandy’s Winds” (from their Earth News section):

The National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration’s National Climatic Data Center’s “Extreme Weather and Climate Events” page – find weather records, climate data, and more:

The National Weather Service’s website: good to keep on hand for weather forecasts (see the “Forecast” tab). It also offers a sizable “Weather Safety” section and a series of interesting sub-links under “Information Center”:

Unisys Weather: The Internet Public Library notes this site is “for the person who’s really into meteorology.” Here you can obtain a “Weather Enthusiast App” and much, much more. Click the “Information” tab to start:

Weather Conversion Calculators”: convert units for distance, speed, pressure, wind chill, temperature, humidity, heat index, and more. From Fort Eustis Weather (US Army).

NASA’s Earth Science page includes brief chapters on Weather, Atmospheric Composition, and Earth Surface & Interior:

Image via mrg.bz / cohdra

College as Rude Awakening?


About 40% of students who drop out of college do so because they learn their academic abilities — indicated by early grades — are lower than they’d expectealarm clockd.  That’s the news from this article, linked from today’s Inside Higher Ed.  It refers to a study from The University of Western Ontario that suggests students work hard, but overestimate themselves.

The study was conducted on US college students.

Todd Stinebrickner, co-author of the study (“Learning About Academic Ability and the College Drop-Out Decision”), also suggests that students should be better prepared “fundamentally” [in math and science subjects in particular].

Image via mrg.bz / Alvimann

%d bloggers like this: