Despite reports that RSS is dying, died or defunct there are still some very good uses for the Really Simple Syndication technology.
Yesterday was the official start to the 2011 Hurricane Season which lasts until 30 November 2011 – yes it is 6 months long!
One way I keep up with any developing tropical systems during the hurricane season is by using the RSS feeds of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida.
So you may ask why I choose to use RSS feeds instead of visiting a website, weather channel or a mobile app to keep up to speed on the tropics? Well the reason is that I subscribe to the RSS in Outlook 2010 and then forget about it. When any update is posted by the NHC it appears in my Unread RSS Feeds folder in Outlook which I open multiple times daily. If things are calm out there I get a quick glance at conditions and then move on. If they are tracking a storm the regular updates appear in my RSS Feeds folder in Outlook automatically and I am immediately brought up to date. Once a storm is made they offer a storm specific RSS feed so you can track a storm that maybe a specific threat to your location.
I have now been using this method over the last 5 years or so and it has never failed me in anyway.
If your interested in tracking the RSS Feeds from the NHC you can do it in any RSS aware application, website or software program – you are not required to use Outlook 2010.
You can visit the NHC RSS page at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/aboutrss.shtml to peruse the nearly 120 different RSS feeds they have.
Here are the main feeds for following any tropical weather related news in the Atlantic and Eastern Pacific:
Graphical Tropical Weather Outlooks: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/gtwo.xml
Podcasts (Experimental): http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/audio/index_podcast.xml
Podcasts en Español (Experimental): http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/audio/index_podcast_sp.xml
Specific Tropical Cyclone Feeds by Basin
Specific Tropical Cyclone Feeds by Storm
Atlantic Wallet 1: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_at1.xml
Atlantic Wallet 2: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_at2.xml
Atlantic Wallet 3: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_at3.xml
Atlantic Wallet 4: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_at4.xml
Atlantic Wallet 5: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_at5.xml
Eastern Pacific Wallet 1: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_ep1.xml
Eastern Pacific Wallet 2: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_ep2.xml
Eastern Pacific Wallet 3: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_ep3.xml
Eastern Pacific Wallet 4: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_ep4.xml
Eastern Pacific Wallet 5: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/nhc_ep5.xml