2.4 Climate.gov

Wednesday, 9 January 2013: 9:30 AM
Room 8ABC (Austin Convention Center)
Viviane Silva, NOAA/NWS, Silver Spring, MD; and F. Nielpold

The NOAA Climate.gov web portal provides science and services for a climate-smart nation. We offer a public-friendly point of entry to NOAA's and partners' diverse portfolios of climate data and information. Our goals are to promote public understanding of climate science, to make our data products and services easy to access and use for decision-making, to provide climate-related support to the private sector and the Nation's economy, and to provide quick access to data and information for individuals with very specific questions. Each of the tabs on Climate.gov's main page is designed to meet the needs and interests of four groups:

1. News & Features is a popular-style magazine for the science-interested public covering topics in climate science, adaptation, and mitigation.

2. Data is a gateway for scientists, resource managers, businesses and other interested members of the public who want to find and use climate data.

3. Decision Support is designed for policy leaders, decision makers, and resource managers who want authoritative, peer-reviewed climate science information to help them understand and manage climate-related risks and opportunities.

4. Teaching Climate offers learning activities and curriculum materials, multi-media resources, and professional development opportunities for formal and informal educators who want to incorporate climate science into their work.

The Climate.gov project began as a rapid prototyping effort that was first published in February 2010 so we could gather feedback to help us develop and evolve Climate.gov in user-driven ways. We completely redesigned the site based on user feedback and transitioned to an operational status in late 2012. Here's a brief summary of some of what's new:

• a complete redesign of the user interface to improve our page designs and to simplify navigation throughout Climate.gov;

• renamed sections for easier audience recognition: ClimateWatch Magazine became “News & Features”; Data & Services will became “Data”; Understanding Climate became “Decision Support”; and Education became “Teaching Climate.”

• an expanded scope and enhanced functionality. For example, we added a new “Climate Conditions” section to provide routinely updated maps and data trends that give a public-friendly digest of recent, current, and near-future climate conditions.

• a new host server and content management system was built to improve and expedite our ability to publish and manage Climate.gov's contents.

Particular emphasis through 2013 and beyond will be on evolving the design and functionality of the “Data” section and the Climate Conditions section to expand and improve users' ability to locate, preview, interact with, analyze, and access climate data from all across NOAA's and its partners' data centers.

At the AMS, we will present the new version of Climate.gov, which features an entirely new look and feel, additional capabilities, and better integration of services.

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