Gathering data to make visible the invisible (by Diego Fdez-Sevilla)


Gathering data to make visible the invisible (by Diego Fdez-Sevilla)

Those who work and have experience in research know very well how tedious is the process of gathering data. When I was doing studies on aerobiological processess I started spending many hours in a microscope identifying and counting pollen grains just to create tables with numbers. Then you take those numbers and create charts. Not enough, you then go to statistics and build more tables introducing more variables such as humidity, wind speed and temperature and start playing analyses which might backup any theory your brain manage to generate. If you can do that, you feel joy.

But numbers are so abstract that many times your brain demands images that bring sense to your numbers. More than that, numbers, by themselves, only give you answer to those questions that your knowledge is able to manufacture. But, what happens when you look at your data but your brain does not find questions? It is like having a toy designed to only play one game. So, either you make a different toy, find different data, to play a different game or you become a children applying imagination to explore what else could you make out of your toy, your data, by braking the rules established. Many discoveries come from boredom, from playing with data breaking the rules of established patterns of thought.

Here is where the technology can play a nice part. I am looking at atmospheric behaviour and in order to perform some statistical analyses I need data. The most comprehensible data available in the open access format and with visual representation that I have found is at the Nullschool.net web site. A graphic representation of atmospheric variables that I have used in previous posts trying to apply images with my thoughts showing data from  GFS / NCEP / US National Weather Service.

But also with the images displayed in this platform, you can consult data by clicking over the image. Applying this method, you can retrieve data and create your own data set. This is a very time consuming process and you have to do it without stopping in order to build your data set in the closest possible time lapse, from beginning to the end, because the data displayed changes every three hours. And that is what I have done. I have taken the time to retrieve data of temperature and wind speed for all crossing points in the grid between latitude and longitude in lapses of 10 degrees. It took around 2 hours and some…

And you might wonder, what only one day of data can offer you? is it worthy? Well, it is very limited what you can do with only one sample of data. However, you can make visible the invisible.

This is what Temperature looks like for both hemispheres at 250 hPa (Jet Stream) level. Charts 3D T by Lat_Lon 12 Nov DiegoFdezSevilla II This is what Wind speed looks like for both hemispheres at 250 hPa (Jet Stream) level. Chart 3D Wind speed LonLat 250 hPa Diego Fdez-Sevilla

 As I pointed out earlier, this is not the most effective way to gain data. May be somebody out there could help me here. Do you know where or how could I obtain some data?

I am looking for atmospheric data:

– for the global globe – in the form of latitude/longitude (I don´t need high definition.) – for several altitudes (e.g. 1000 hPa, 500 hPa, 250, 70hPa and 10 hPa) – and parameters such as daily mean Temperature, Pressure and wind speed.

I am searching for data covering a complete planetary cycle beginning and ending in summer so I could look at the full development of winter. One ideal year data would cover from 2013 summer to 2014 summer just to try some ideas.

I have tried to find this kind of data, and in a format compatible with excel, looking into the NOAA’s website and I have arrived at The Global Forecast System (GFS) http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/products/gfs/#GFS. And yet I am not able to find a file that would contain the data I am looking for, or even a file in the format that would allow me to open it with basic office package. Has any body any idea that could help me out?

Dear Santa,

I believe I have being a good kid this year (it sounds like the other 40 years before, I know, but this time it is true) so, I would like to ask you for Christmas, if you wouldn´t mind, to talk about my situation, as job seeker, with some of those other researchers, CEOs and department directors around the world while you deliver your presents. You know, you could tell them that I am a hard working and skilful man looking for resources and an opportunity. Thanks Santa.

Sincerely yours.

Diego.

Merry Christmas everybody!

You will find more visuals that I have made from this platform in the following posts

2014:

2015:

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About Diego Fdez-Sevilla, PhD.

Citing This Site "Title", published online "Month"+"Year", retrieved on "Month""Day", "Year" from http://www.diegofdezsevilla.wordpress.com. By Diego Fdez-Sevilla, PhD. More guidance on citing this web as a source can be found at NASA webpage: http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/bibliography/citations#! Bachelor in General Biology, Masters degree "Licenciado" in Environmental Sciences (2001, Spain). PhD in Aerobiology (2007, UK). Lived, acquired training and worked in Spain, UK, Germany and Poland. I have shared the outcome from my previous work as scientific speaker in events held in those countries as well as in Switzerland and Finland. After couple of years performing research and working in institutions linked with environmental research and management, I find myself in a period of transition searching for a new position or funding to support my research. In the present competitive scenario, instead of just moving my cv and wait for my next opportunity to arrive, I have decided to invest also my energy and time in opening my own line of research showing what I am capable of. The value of the data and the original nature of the research presented in this blog has proved to be worthy of consideration by the scientific community as well as for publication in scientific journals. However, without a position as member of an institution, it becomes very challenging to be published. I hope that this handicap do not overshadow the value of my work and the intellectual rights represented by the license of attribution attached are respected and considered by the scientist involved in this line of research. Any comment and feedback aimed to be constructive is welcome. In this blog I publish pieces of research focused on addressing relevant environmental questions. Furthermore, I try to break the barrier that academic publications very often offer isolating scientific findings from the general public. In that way I address those topics which I am familiar with, thanks to my training in environmental research, making them available throughout my posts. (see "Framework and Timeline" for a complete index). At this moment, 2017, I am living in Spain with no affiliation attachments. Free to relocate geographically worldwide. If you feel that I could be a contribution to your institution, team and projects don´t hesitate in contact me at d.fdezsevilla (at) gmail.com or consult my profile at LinkedIn, ResearchGate and Academia.edu. Also, I'd appreciate information about any opportunity that you might know and believe it could match with my aptitudes. The conclusions and ideas expressed in each post as part of my own creativity are part of my Intellectual Portfolio and are protected by Intellectual Property Laws. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial conditions. In citing my work from this website, be sure to include the date of access. (c)Diego Fdez-Sevilla, PhD, 2016. Filling in or Finding Out the gaps around. Publication accessed 20YY-MM-DD at http://www.diegofdezsevilla.wordpress.com/
This entry was posted in Aerobiology, Energy Balance, Filling in, Finding out, Opinion, Polar vortex and Jet Stream and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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