WeatherBug

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WeatherBug
Weather bug.JPG
Stable release 6.08 / August 2010; 4 years ago (2010-08)
Operating system Desktop
Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux
Mobile
Android, BlackBerry OS, iOS, Symbian, Windows phone, Maemo
Website weather.weatherbug.com

WeatherBug is a brand owned by Earth Networks, based in Germantown, Maryland, that provides live weather data and maintains a mesoscale network of (at last count) 8,530[1] weather stations. Along with its weather station network, the company operates a dense lightning sensor network that uses broadband technology to constantly track total lightning in hurricanes.[2] In early 2011, AWS Convergence Technologies, Inc. (formerly Automated Weather Source) changed its name to Earth Networks, Inc.

History[edit]

The company was founded by Bob Marshall, the current CEO, and other partners in 1993. It started in the education market by selling weather tracking stations and educational software to public and private schools, and then used the data from the stations on their website. Later, the company began partnering with TV stations, such that broadcasters could use WeatherBug's local data and camera shots in their weather reports.

In 2000, the WeatherBug desktop application was launched, and later, the website. Later, the company launched WeatherBug and WeatherBug Elite as smartphone apps for iOS and Android, which won an APPY app design award in 2013.[3] The company also sells a lightning tracking safety system that is used by schools and parks in southern Florida and elsewhere.[4]

The company uses lightning detection sensors throughout Guinea, Africa to track storms as they develop and has more than 50 lightning detection sensors in Brazil. [5] Earth Networks received The Award for Outstanding Services to Meteorology by a Corporation in 2014 from the American Meteorological Society for "developing innovative lightning detection data products that improve severe-storm monitoring and warnings."[6]

As of April 2012, WeatherBug is the second most popular weather information service on the Internet, behind only The Weather Channel's Web site, and ahead of the sites run by Weather Underground and Accuweather.[7]

Mobile application[edit]

The company developed WeatherBug, a mobile application of their service for Android, iOS and Windows Phone platforms.[8][9] Spark is a component of the WeatherBug app that reports where the nearest lightning strike is to you, based on data from the Total Lightning Network (run by WeatherBug's parent company, Earth Networks) and your phone's GPS location.[10]

Spyware/Adware concerns[edit]

According to the company, the desktop application is not spyware because it is incapable of tracking your overall Web use or deciphering anything on one's hard drive.[11] WeatherBug announced in 2004 it had been certified to display the TRUSTe privacy seal on its website.[12] In 2005, Microsoft AntiSpyware, since renamed Windows Defender, flagged the application as a low-risk threat, but this classification was quickly removed.[13] In 2005, the editor of PC Magazine wrote an article entitled "WeatherBug is Not Spyware" and referred to it as "a handy app."[14]

WeatherBug Backyard[edit]

WeatherBug Backyard is a branch-off of WeatherBug. WeatherBug Backyard, or WB Backyard for short, is a community where weather enthusiasts can come together and discuss the weather in their area, post pictures and video, and create a profile.

External links[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ MADIS Meteorological Surface Integrated Mesonet Data Providers
  2. ^ Daily Record Staff (August 25, 2011). "Germantown-based Earth Networks finds correlation between lightning, storm path". The Daily Record. Retrieved 2011-10-05. 
  3. ^ MediaPost – Appy Awards
  4. ^ Dodging lightning | fortmyers.floridaweekly.com | Florida Weekly
  5. ^ "Lightning Detection Network Tested-outfor Storm Tracking". Retrieved 8 January 2014. 
  6. ^ American Meteorological Society http://www2.ametsoc.org/awards/search_results.cfm |url= missing title (help). Retrieved 10 June 2014. 
  7. ^ Weather Channel buys Weather Underground; brand stays — paidContent
  8. ^ Moren, Dan (July 17, 2008). "Review: WeatherBug for iPhone". Macworld. Retrieved Jan 15, 2013. 
  9. ^ "WeatherBug". Android Magazine UK (Imagine Publishing) (20): 10. 
  10. ^ http://www.livescience.com/29253-lightning-strike-app.html
  11. ^ USA weather and forecast information on WeatherBug.com
  12. ^ "WeatherBug Certified Under TRUSTe Privacy Seal Program". PR Newswire. 
  13. ^ WeatherBug Miffed at Microsofts Spyware Classification
  14. ^ Lance Ulanoff (October 18, 2005). "WeatherBug Is Not Spyware". PC Magazine. Retrieved 2011-10-05.