Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Update on major changes

All right, since you asked...

I am still working on the new website. I am presently waiting on the new weather station parts to get here before I make the site officially open, but I already have some pages up if you would like to see what the final version will look like.

The website is

Be watching for more updates in the future!

Friday, June 22, 2007

Major changes ahead

Yes, everyone, by next week, there will be major changes to this blog (hint: new website!). Stay tuned for details.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Rest of weather station on its way

Well, the One-Wire station is almost finished. I now have the temperature, humidity, and wind sensors, and I just ordered the barometer and rain gauge today. Hopefully, by the end of next week everything will be up and running!

Stay tuned for updates.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

WREG: Drought causes lakes' draining

Story by Dennis Turner

Arkabutla Lake, Miss - Most of us like to beat the summer heat in the water. That's why local lakes and reservoirs are so popular. But this year, you're likely to find more heat... and a lot less water.

Ann Betterton spends hours at Arkabutla Lake in the summer... but this year she says you might as well call it the "Arkabutla desert". "This is the second time I've seen it like this, but not this low."

The lake is so low swimmers say it's not easy to have fun here. "Very low, it's not usually low like this." said Melinda Gould who came to the lake to swim with friends.

The same conditions plague almost all the area lakes. Arkabutla, Grenada, Sardis and Enid all sit at record low levels. Lake levels here read from nearly 7 feet to more than 16 feet below normal. We're told even Pickwick is low, though not quite as bad, and Horseshoe lake in Arkansas is drier than normal.

All these reservoirs, are supposed to regulate flooding and conserve water. "We operate sorta like your bathtub, ok? On the lake, we draw it down to make way for the spring rains. When the spring rains come we have water in the lake and we can also let water out for the farmers." said Ernie Lentz of the Army Corps of Engineers Vicksburg District, which operates the major North Mississippi lakes.

But this year the rains didn't come, and we'll soon find ourselves in the dry months of July, August and September.

How bad is it? More than half the boat ramps here look high and dry. What will it take to fix this? You won't believe the answer. Rangers here tell me it would take a hurricane or tropical storm to hover over us for a day or so to get this lake where it needs to be.

And as much as folks here want their lake back.. they're not ready for anything THAT drastic. "I don't wanna see no hurricane but I know we need some water, bad. ‘Cause the ground's so hard you can't do anything. Our garden's not doing good at all." said Betterton.

In fact, the lakes have had dozens of events like fishing tournaments cancel because of the lack of water.

But believe it or not, this dry spell does have a silver lining. "Next year fishing should be excellent because all these areas tthat [sic] are exposed where vigitation [sic] is growing and that's food for the fish." said Lentz.

But that's NEXT year. Now, you might think the low water might prevent more drowning problems, but rangers tell me they have the most drowning cases when the water's unusually high... or unusually low.

Source URL:


Short Term Forecast from MEG:
Surely not.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Oops! I'm still alive

Well, if anyone is still out there, you may have noticed that this blog has not been updated in over five months, nor has my ChaseBlogs blog. Sorry. I have since gotten a job (and been fired from it) and many other major events have happened since January. Well, now I am going to try to revive this blog with its normal content. Additionally, I will be merging the ChaseBlog with this blog to help organize everything.

As you also may have noticed, the station has been down for several months. This is due to an almost complete hardware failure to the rain gauge and anemometer. And, because of that, Weather Display, my new weather station software-of-choice, won't let me upload incomplete data. Thus, the station has been down.

I have not attempted to fix that station, because I am soon going to be setting up the Hobby-Boards/One-Wire weather station. In my post below, I thoroughly described receiving the first components of the station. Well, today, I ordered the second phase of the new station from Hobby-Boards. I ordered the Wind Instrument, and various cables and connectors. I will let you know when it arrives here.

Additionally, a volunteer organization named CoCoRaHS has become active in TN, with help from the NWS. CoCoRaHS stands for "Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network". The organization seeks volunteers who will commit to report precipitation amounts from their home on a daily basis. All it requires is a manual 4" rain gauge (which can bought from a partner site). The NWS is a big sponsor of CoCoRaHS, and uses many of their reports. I joined in April and have been reporting almost every day. I would encourage anyone who likes to observe the weather daily to sign up! By the way, I am station TN-SH-4.

In other weather news, not much is happening weather wise, except for the major drought we are going through. Shelby County is listed on the US Drought Monitor as having a moderate drought, while the surrounding areas have a severe drought.

Well, that's all for now. I'll try to post tomorrow.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Station offline for a few minutes today

The weather station will be offline for the next few minutes as I move my computer to another part of the room. It shouldn't take very long.

Friday, January 19, 2007

It's here! New 1-wire sensors in operation

Yes! The 1-Wire sensor that I ordered arrived today. In the box from Hobby-Boards, which got here quickly thanks to fast (and cheap) shipping, included the following:

The DS9490 1-Wire USB Adapter (in blue), the Humidity/Temperature sensor and case, a RJ-45 coupler, and a special RJ-12 to RJ45 cable to interface between the sensor and USB adapter.

Here's a few photos of the inside of the Humidity/Temperature sensor.

As you may know, I am using the book Weather Toys: Building and Hacking Your Own 1-Wire Weather Station (Amazon link). In that book, author Tim Bitson takes you step-by-step in building the entire station, but he gives you the source code to the software so that you can modify and hack to your needs. Also, he set up a website for support and other ideas for the network. After setting up a mini 1-Wire network, I tried out the software, and this is what I got:

Starting SimpleWeather 1.0
Stable Library
Native lib Version = RXTX-2.1-7
Java lib Version = RXTX-2.1-7
Found Adapter: {DS9490} on Port USB1
Resetting 1-wire bus
Time = Fri Jan 19 21:09:06 CST 2007
Temperature = 72.5degs F
Humidity = 29.719664%

Time = Fri Jan 19 21:09:09 CST 2007
Temperature = 72.5degs F
Humidity = 29.721657%

Time = Fri Jan 19 21:09:12 CST 2007
Temperature = 72.5degs F
Humidity = 29.35742%

Time = Fri Jan 19 21:09:15 CST 2007
Temperature = 72.5degs F
Humidity = 29.35742%

Pretty cool, huh? I kind of changed the code to refresh every 3 seconds, instead of the default one minute. Soon, I will order some more parts to expand this network into a fully functional weather station! Watch for more details.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Data outage

Well, WUHU messed up around 4 PM Monday and stopped uploading. Thus, no data is available from 4 PM Monday to about 7 AM Wednesday. Sorry.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

More 14 mph spikes

14 mph wind spikes are still being recorded due to the wiring problem of the anemometer. I will delete these entries from WU this afternoon. Sorry for any inconvenience.

Update (1:30 pm): The wrongful entires have been deleted.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Stupid wind spikes!

The WS-2310 has been malfunctioning all day today due to the rainfall. Several 14 mph wind spikes were observed at different times today. I have deleted all the wrong data on WU, but I can't delete it on CWOP or AWEKAS. Sorry.

First phase on OWS ordered

I have taken a huge step in the construction of the OWS (One-Wire Station) by ordering the parts for the first phase of the project. Today, I ordered the Temperature/Humidity sensor, the case for it, the USB Adapter, and various cables and connectors from Hobby-Boards. It should be here sometime next week, and of course I'll let you know when it comes in.

Of course, all of the information for the OWS comes from the book Weather Toys: Building and Hacking Your Own 1-Wire Weather Station by Tim Bitson, and the companion website,

For information on the phases of this construction, see this Google document.

Major update

Howdy everyone! I figured it was time to reinstate this blog again. I currently operate the Mid-South Weather ChaseBlog, and I don't update it very much. The ChaseBlog is used for discussing weather conditions only, so I figured that I would use this blog for status updates for my weather station. Whenever something goes wrong or a new feature is added, you'll see it here first.

Also, I am currently planning and constructing a brand new weather station - stay tuned for more details later!

Note some of the new features:
  • At the top of the page, the current version of WUHU I am running will be displayed.
  • The live Java applet of the weather station's data, to the right.
There will be more to come, so stay tuned for the latest information!



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© 2005-2007 by Jake Hughes. Some rights reserved - see below.

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