How’s the weather out there?

One of the things that takes getting used to living in the Bay Area is the many microclimates. Temperatures and conditions can vary dramatically within a few miles.

I was deciding whether to head out to the Beach Chalet, a microbrewery and restaurant on the Pacific Ocean, on Sunday. They’ve got a great back yard with Adirondack chairs and live music. It’s a gorgeous place — on a sunny day. Unfortunately, it’s located in one of the foggiest parts of San Francisco.

Before trekking all the way to the other side of the city I wanted to know whether it was sunny there. Could social networking help?

I decided to post the question — to noone in particular — on Twitter:

Wonder if it is sunny there. My question posed on Twitter.

Within 10 minutes, I had my answer:

Its Not.

Of course, this particular experiment is likely only to work this well this quickly in the Bay Area, where it’s easier to find a Twitter user than a newspaper reader.

How else could I find the answer? Google now has geo-coded Webcams in Google Earth. Find where you want to be and check to see if there’s a camera. Click and you’ll get your answer. In the case of the Beach Chalet, it’s often this:

No, I didn't just paste in a white image. This is a view from a webcam near Ocean Beach.

No, I didn't take a picture of a white wall. This is a view from the Cliff House webcam near Ocean Beach.


About Rakesh Agrawal

Rakesh Agrawal is Senior Director of product at Amazon (Audible). Previously, he launched local and mobile products for Microsoft and AOL. He tweets at @rakeshlobster.
This entry was posted in geotagging, google, maps, social networking, twitter, web 2.0. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to How’s the weather out there?

  1. Pingback: Realtime Twitter search is not a Google killer « reDesign

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