Sunday, August 1, 2010

Featured Question

"Featured Question" is an irregular feature in which we highlight interesting questions asked by blog visitors. If your question is interesting enough, you might get a T-shirt. Or not. Other questions have previously been highlighted here.

The Goog is a wonderful resource; it's used almost continuously here at the CapitalClimate Capitol. However, contrary to popular belief, it can't read your mind. Sometimes, you don't get what you're looking for, even though the information is out there somewhere. From looking at our traffic statistics, it seems that some users are getting to CapitalClimate with what we would call "drive-by Googling". If they don't find the exact phrase they wanted staring them directly in the face, they go away. There are a multitude of carefully vetted links on this site, along with over 5 years of archives. If you don't immediately get your question answered, look around a little or even pose the question directly as a comment; we'll do our best to respond promptly.

Today's featured question comes from Rocky Ford, Colorado, where a user was searching for "average aug 28 temp in wash d.c.". For some reason known only to the gnomes of Googleland, the link which came up was to a recap of January 2010 monthly temperatures. The phrase "average aug 28 temp in wash d.c." is what is technically known as a Googlenope. In all the vast reaches of the Galactic Internet, this particular phrase doesn't exist. (Or at least it didn't until this blog post.)

The data, however, are readily available. Here's how. (Follow along in a separate browser tab or window so you don't get lost.)
  • Look at the top of this page. Right below the title header, there's a header called "Climate Data Links".
  • Right below that, there's a large blue header "Local:".
  • The very first link is called "Washington, DC climate data." Click on it.
  • It takes you to a page where we've conveniently collected up some National Weather Service (NWS) links (Your tax dollars at work!) on Washington, DC climate.
  • Look at the header "Daily Means and Extremes". There's a link for each of the 12 months. Click on "August".
  • It takes you to a NWS page which handily includes just about everything you might want to ask about August weather for each day in Washington.
  • Looking down the rows to the one labeled "28" in the first column, you can see that the average high is 84 (in the next column) and the low is 67.
  • What could be easier than that? You're welcome.
If you've made a reasonable effort to look around and still don't find what you need, please leave a comment and the Googling Monkeys of CapitalClimate will do their best to help.

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