Authors of the Storm

Meteorologists and the Culture of Prediction
Author: Gary Alan Fine
ISBN: 145960606X
Page: 552
View: 5071
Whether it is used as an icebreaker in conversation or as the subject of serious inquiry, ''the weather'' is one of the few subjects that everyone talks about. And though we recognize the faces that bring us the weather on television, how government meteorologists and forecasters go about their jobs is rarely scrutinized. Given recent weather-related disasters, it's time we find out more. In Authors of the Storm, Gary Alan Fine offers an inside look at how meteorologists and forecasters predict the weather. Based on field observation and interviews at the Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma, the National Weather Service in Washington, D.C., and a handful of mid western outlets, Fine finds a supremely hard-working, insular clique of professionals who often refer to themselves as a ''band of brothers.'' In Fine's skilled hands, we learn their lingo, how they ''read'' weather conditions, how forecasts are written, and, of course, how those messages are conveyed to the public. Weather forecasts, he shows, are often shaped as much by social and cultural factors inside local offices as they are by approaching cumulus clouds. By opening up this unique world to us, Authors of the Storm offers a valuable and fascinating glimpse of a crucial profession.

    • Computers

Cultures of Prediction in Atmospheric and Climate Science

Epistemic and Cultural Shifts in Computer-based Modelling and Simulation
Author: Matthias Heymann,Gabriele Gramelsberger,Martin Mahony
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1315406292
Category: Computers
Page: 256
View: 4096
In recent decades, science has experienced a revolutionary shift. The development and extensive application of computer modelling and simulation has transformed the knowledge‐making practices of scientific fields as diverse as astro‐physics, genetics, robotics and demography. This epistemic transformation has brought with it a simultaneous heightening of political relevance and a renewal of international policy agendas, raising crucial questions about the nature and application of simulation knowledges throughout public policy. Through a diverse range of case studies, spanning over a century of theoretical and practical developments in the atmospheric and environmental sciences, this book argues that computer modelling and simulation have substantially changed scientific and cultural practices and shaped the emergence of novel ‘cultures of prediction’. Making an innovative, interdisciplinary contribution to understanding the impact of computer modelling on research practice, institutional configurations and broader cultures, this volume will be essential reading for anyone interested in the past, present and future of climate change and the environmental sciences.

    • Science

Predicting the Weather

Victorians and the Science of Meteorology
Author: Katharine Anderson
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226019705
Category: Science
Page: 376
View: 3645
Victorian Britain, with its maritime economy and strong links between government and scientific enterprises, founded an office to collect meteorological statistics in 1854 in an effort to foster a modern science of the weather. But as the office turned to prediction rather than data collection, the fragile science became a public spectacle, with its forecasts open to daily scrutiny in the newspapers. And meteorology came to assume a pivotal role in debates about the responsibility of scientists and the authority of science. Studying meteorology as a means to examine the historical identity of prediction, Katharine Anderson offers here an engrossing account of forecasting that analyzes scientific practice and ideas about evidence, the organization of science in public life, and the articulation of scientific values in Victorian culture. In Predicting the Weather, Anderson grapples with fundamental questions about the function, intelligibility, and boundaries of scientific work while exposing the public expectations that shaped the practice of science during this period. A cogent analysis of the remarkable history of weather forecasting in Victorian Britain, Predicting the Weather will be essential reading for scholars interested in the public dimensions of science.

    • History

Looking Forward

Prediction and Uncertainty in Modern America
Author: Jamie L. Pietruska
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022647500X
Category: History
Page: 288
View: 5635
Looking Forward puts some new spins on the old saying, "the future lies ahead." Pietruska's book is a history of forecasting in the United States from the 1860s to the1920s that reveals how methods of forecasting and ideas about uncertainty changed as institutions and individuals reckoned with what novelist Edward Bellamy noted as the "specter of Uncertainty" in the late 19th century. In that context, prediction became a ubiquitous scientific, economic, and cultural practice, and forecasts, accurate or not, offered illusions of control over one's future in what William Dean Howells recognized as the "economic chance-world" emerging at this time. Pietruska examines controversies over the production, circulation, and contestation of crop estimates, weather forecasts, economic predictions, and the predictions of fortune-tellers in order to uncover the social lives of forecasts that Americans used to mitigate risk in daily life. The book's overarching argument revises historians' understanding of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries as a "search for order" by demonstrating that a search for predictability yielded just the opposite: acceptance of the economic and cultural uncertainties of modern life. The search for order and the forces of chance and contingency may seem at odds, but Pietruska reconciles the two frameworks by recasting the 1860s to the 1920s as a period in which government bureaucracies, information networks, and professional forecasters came to accommodate the very uncertainties they had originally sought to conquer. As a cultural history of scientific and popular forecasting from the Civil War to World War I, this book grapples directly with a profound issue: how do we produce knowledge about the future?

    • History

Weather Matters

An American Cultural History Since 1900
Author: Bernard Mergen
Publisher: N.A
Category: History
Page: 397
View: 5044
A kaleidoscopic book that illuminates our obsession with weather--as both physical reality and evocative metaphor--focusing on the ways in which it is perceived, feared, embraced, managed, and even marketed.

    • Business & Economics

Codes of Finance

Engineering Derivatives in a Global Bank
Author: Vincent Antonin Lépinay
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400840465
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 304
View: 4978
The financial industry's invention of complex products such as credit default swaps and other derivatives has been widely blamed for triggering the global financial crisis of 2008. In Codes of Finance, Vincent Antonin Lépinay, a former employee of one of the world’s leading investment banks, takes readers behind the scenes of the equity derivatives business at the bank before the crisis, providing a detailed firsthand account of the creation, marketing, selling, accounting, and management of these financial instruments—and of how they ultimately created havoc inside and outside the bank.

    • Social Science

Environmental Anthropology

Future Directions
Author: Helen Kopnina,Eleanor Shoreman-Ouimet
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135044120
Category: Social Science
Page: 328
View: 4182
This volume presents new theoretical approaches, methodologies, subject pools, and topics in the field of environmental anthropology. Environmental anthropologists are increasingly focusing on self-reflection - not just on themselves and their impacts on environmental research, but also on the reflexive qualities of their subjects, and the extent to which these individuals are questioning their own environmental behavior. Here, contributors confront the very notion of "natural resources" in granting non-human species their subjectivity and arguing for deeper understanding of "nature," and "wilderness" beyond the label of "ecosystem services." By engaging in interdisciplinary efforts, these anthropologists present new ways for their colleagues, subjects, peers and communities to understand the causes of, and alternatives to environmental destruction. This book demonstrates that environmental anthropology has moved beyond the construction of rural, small group theory, entering into a mode of solution-based methodologies and interdisciplinary theories for understanding human-environmental interactions. It is focused on post-rural existence, health and environmental risk assessment, on the realm of alternative actions, and emphasizes the necessary steps towards preventing environmental crisis.

    • Nature


The True Story of how Science Tamed the Weather
Author: Michael Ray Smith
Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group
ISBN: 1608320340
Category: Nature
Page: 286
View: 2038
From the heart of tornado alley, Smith takes us into the eye of America's most devastating storms and behind the scenes of some of the world's most renowned scientific institutions to uncover the relationship between mankind and the weather.

    • History

Isaac's Storm

A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in History
Author: Erik Larson
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307874095
Category: History
Page: 336
View: 8998
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a great confidence suffused America. Isaac Cline was one of the era's new men, a scientist who believed he knew all there was to know about the motion of clouds and the behavior of storms. The idea that a hurricane could damage the city of Galveston, Texas, where he was based, was to him preposterous, "an absurd delusion." It was 1900, a year when America felt bigger and stronger than ever before. Nothing in nature could hobble the gleaming city of Galveston, then a magical place that seemed destined to become the New York of the Gulf. That August, a strange, prolonged heat wave gripped the nation and killed scores of people in New York and Chicago. Odd things seemed to happen everywhere: A plague of crickets engulfed Waco. The Bering Glacier began to shrink. Rain fell on Galveston with greater intensity than anyone could remember. Far away, in Africa, immense thunderstorms blossomed over the city of Dakar, and great currents of wind converged. A wave of atmospheric turbulence slipped from the coast of western Africa. Most such waves faded quickly. This one did not. In Cuba, America's overconfidence was made all too obvious by the Weather Bureau's obsession with controlling hurricane forecasts, even though Cuba's indigenous weathermen had pioneered hurricane science. As the bureau's forecasters assured the nation that all was calm in the Caribbean, Cuba's own weathermen fretted about ominous signs in the sky. A curious stillness gripped Antigua. Only a few unlucky sea captains discovered that the storm had achieved an intensity no man alive had ever experienced. In Galveston, reassured by Cline's belief that no hurricane could seriously damage the city, there was celebration. Children played in the rising water. Hundreds of people gathered at the beach to marvel at the fantastically tall waves and gorgeous pink sky, until the surf began ripping the city's beloved beachfront apart. Within the next few hours Galveston would endure a hurricane that to this day remains the nation's deadliest natural disaster. In Galveston alone at least 6,000 people, possibly as many as 10,000, would lose their lives, a number far greater than the combined death toll of the Johnstown Flood and 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. And Isaac Cline would experience his own unbearable loss. Meticulously researched and vividly written, Isaac's Storm is based on Cline's own letters, telegrams, and reports, the testimony of scores of survivors, and our latest understanding of the hows and whys of great storms. Ultimately, however, it is the story of what can happen when human arrogance meets nature's last great uncontrollable force. As such, Isaac's Storm carries a warning for our time. From the Hardcover edition.

    • Science

Weather on the Air

A History of Broadcast Meteorology
Author: Robert Henson
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1935704001
Category: Science
Page: 264
View: 2168
From low humor to high drama, TV weather reporting has encompassed an enormous range of styles and approaches, triggering chuckles, infuriating the masses, and at times even saving lives. In Weather on the Air, meteorologist and science journalist Robert Henson covers it all—the people, technology, science, and show business that combine to deliver the weather to the public each day. Featuring the long-term drive to professionalize weathercasting; the complex relations between government and private forecasters; and the effects of climate-change science and the Internet on today’s broadcasts. With dozens of photos and anecdotes illuminating the many forces that have shaped weather broadcasts over the years, this engaging study will be an invaluable tool for students of broadcast meteorology and mass communication and an entertaining read for anyone fascinated by the public face of weather.

    • Nature


Urban Beekeeping and the Power of the Bee
Author: Lisa Jean Moore,Mary Kosut
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814763065
Category: Nature
Page: 256
View: 7524
Winner, 2014 Distinguished Scholarship Award presented by the Animals & Society section of the American Sociological Association Bees are essential for human survival—one-third of all food on American dining tables depends on the labor of bees. Beyond pollination, the very idea of the bee is ubiquitous in our culture: we can feel buzzed; we can create buzz; we have worker bees, drones, and Queen bees; we establish collectives and even have communities that share a hive-mind. In Buzz, authors Lisa Jean Moore and Mary Kosut convincingly argue that the power of bees goes beyond the food cycle, bees are our mascots, our models, and, unlike any other insect, are both feared and revered. In this fascinating account, Moore and Kosut travel into the land of urban beekeeping in New York City, where raising bees has become all the rage. We follow them as they climb up on rooftops, attend beekeeping workshops and honey festivals, and even put on full-body beekeeping suits and open up the hives. In the process, we meet a passionate, dedicated, and eclectic group of urban beekeepers who tend to their brood with an emotional and ecological connection that many find restorative and empowering. Kosut and Moore also interview professional beekeepers and many others who tend to their bees for their all-important production of a food staple: honey. The artisanal food shops that are so popular in Brooklyn are a perfect place to sell not just honey, but all manner of goods: soaps, candles, beeswax, beauty products, and even bee pollen. Buzz also examines media representations of bees, such as children’s books, films, and consumer culture, bringing to light the reciprocal way in which the bee and our idea of the bee inform one another. Partly an ethnographic investigation and partly a meditation on the very nature of human/insect relations, Moore and Kosut argue that how we define, visualize, and interact with bees clearly reflects our changing social and ecological landscape, pointing to how we conceive of and create culture, and how, in essence, we create ourselves.

    • Academic libraries


Publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries, a Division of the American Library Association
Author: N.A
Publisher: N.A
Category: Academic libraries
Page: N.A
View: 6960

    • Nature

Storm World

Hurricanes, Politics, and the Battle Over Global Warming
Author: Chris Mooney
Publisher: CCH
ISBN: 9780156033664
Category: Nature
Page: 400
View: 3712
The author of The Republican War on Science uses scientific evidence from the 2006 hurricane season to study the link between global warming and the ferocity of hurricanes and explores the influence of the media and politicians on commonly held ideas about climate change. Reprint.

    • United States

American Studies

Author: N.A
Publisher: N.A
Category: United States
Page: N.A
View: 1976

    • Science

The Weather of the Pacific Northwest

Author: Clifford Mass
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295998369
Category: Science
Page: 336
View: 7623
The Pacific Northwest experiences the most varied and fascinating weather in the United States, including world-record winter snows, the strongest non-tropical storms in the nation, and shifts from desert to rain forest in a matter of miles. Local weather features dominate the meteorological landscape, from the Puget Sound convergence zone and wind surges along the Washington Coast, to gap winds through the Columbia Gorge and the �Banana Belt� of southern Oregon. This book is the first comprehensive and authoritative guide to Northwest weather that is directed to the general reader; helpful to boaters, hikers, and skiers; and valuable to expert meteorologists. In The Weather of the Pacific Northwest, University of Washington atmospheric scientist and popular radio commentator Cliff Mass unravels the intricacies of Northwest weather, from the mundane to the mystifying. By examining our legendary floods, snowstorms, and windstorms, and a wide variety of local weather features, Mass answers such interesting questions as: o Why does the Northwest have localized rain shadows? o What is the origin of the hurricane force winds that often buffet the region? o Why does the Northwest have so few thunderstorms? o What is the origin of the Pineapple Express? o Why do ferryboats sometimes seem to float above the water's surface? o Why is it so hard to predict Northwest weather? Mass brings together eyewitness accounts, historical records, and meteorological science to explain Pacific Northwest weather. He also considers possible local effects of global warming. The final chapters guide readers in interpreting the Northwest sky and in securing weather information on their own.

    • Nature

Path of Destruction

The Devastation of New Orleans and the Coming Age of Superstorms
Author: John McQuaid,Mark Schleifstein
Publisher: Little, Brown
ISBN: 0316076597
Category: Nature
Page: 384
View: 3933
At 5:02 A.M. on August 29, 2005, Power Went Out in the Superdome. Not long after, wind ripped giant white rubber sheets off the roof and sent huge shards of debris flying toward Uptown. Rivulets of rainwater began finding their way down through the ceiling, dripping and pouring into the stands, the mezzanine, and the football field. Without ventilation, the air began to get gamy with the smell of sweat and garbage. The bathrooms stopped working. Many people slept; others waited, mostly in silence.

    • Science

The Weather Experiment

The Pioneers Who Sought to See the Future
Author: Peter Moore
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374711275
Category: Science
Page: 416
View: 472
A history of weather forecasting, and an animated portrait of the nineteenth-century pioneers who made it possible By the 1800s, a century of feverish discovery had launched the major branches of science. Physics, chemistry, biology, geology, and astronomy made the natural world explicable through experiment, observation, and categorization. And yet one scientific field remained in its infancy. Despite millennia of observation, mankind still had no understanding of the forces behind the weather. A century after the death of Newton, the laws that governed the heavens were entirely unknown, and weather forecasting was the stuff of folklore and superstition. Peter Moore's The Weather Experiment is the account of a group of naturalists, engineers, and artists who conquered the elements. It describes their travels and experiments, their breakthroughs and bankruptcies, with picaresque vigor. It takes readers from Irish bogs to a thunderstorm in Guanabara Bay to the basket of a hydrogen balloon 8,500 feet over Paris. And it captures the particular bent of mind—combining the Romantic love of Nature and the Enlightenment love of Reason—that allowed humanity to finally decipher the skies.

    • Science

Masters of Uncertainty

Weather Forecasters and the Quest for Ground Truth
Author: Phaedra Daipha
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022629868X
Category: Science
Page: 271
View: 6032
"In Masters of Uncertainity, Phaedra Daipha offers a new framework for understanding decision-making practice after spending years immersed in a northeastern office of the National Weather Service. Arguing that forecasters have made a virtue of the unpredictability of the weather, Daipha shows how they enlist an onmivorous appetite for information and improvisational collage techniques to create a locally meaningful forecast on their computer screens. This richly detailed and lucidly written book advances a theory of decision making that foregrounds the pragmatic and situated nature of expert cognition and casts new light on how we make decisions in the digital age"--Page {4] of cover.

    • Science

British Weather and the Climate of Enlightenment

Author: Jan Golinski
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226302067
Category: Science
Page: 304
View: 3001
Enlightenment inquiries into the weather sought to impose order on a force that had the power to alter human life and social conditions. British Weather and the Climate of Enlightenment reveals how a new sense of the national climate emerged in the eighteenth century from the systematic recording of the weather, and how it was deployed in discussions of the health and welfare of the population. Enlightened intellectuals hailed climate’s role in the development of civilization but acknowledged that human existence depended on natural forces that would never submit to rational control. Reading the Enlightenment through the ideas, beliefs, and practices concerning the weather, Jan Golinski aims to reshape our understanding of the movement and its legacy for modern environmental thinking. With its combination of cultural history and the history of science, British Weather and the Climate of Enlightenment counters the claim that Enlightenment progress set humans against nature, instead revealing that intellectuals of the age drew characteristically modern conclusions about the inextricability of nature and culture.

    • Science

Air Apparent

How Meteorologists Learned to Map, Predict, and Dramatize Weather
Author: Mark Monmonier
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226534237
Category: Science
Page: 309
View: 6340
The author reveals how meteorologists learn to map, predict, and dramatize the weather, and takes a look at the history of meteorology and strategies for mapping the upper atmosphere forecasting disaster. Color photos and line drawings.