Introducing the new Radar stack

With the news that Dark Sky API is going away, this has regretfully brought about the need to discontinue older stacks like WeatherEmbed. After the end of this month, these stacks are unlikely to work properly for displaying weather forecasts and mapping on your websites.

There already exist several free and paid weather services that can provide you with website widgets, for the display of local weather information. Going forwards, it’s probably recommended that you use one of these. Many exist for different regions of the world.

As an interest of mine, I still wanted to offer a weather stack. One of the most influential weather types we are always looking towards the sky for is rain! So I’ve built a brand new stack named Radar that does this single job - it displays the latest rainfall radar for your area. And other precip types like hail, snow, sleet etc.

This would be good to use in websites like sporting fixtures, festivals, outdoor events, travel / tourism, severe weather tracking, and also for farmers and growers. The stack has basic settings to control what part of the world to show. Plus different options to change the visual display of the radar.

Here are some screen grabs showing what it can do (please click to enlarge them):

The Radar stack is built upon the API. It’s a culmination of radar data from several major weather agencies and organisations around the world, layered on Open Street Maps mapping. All open source.

Two configurations are offered in the Radar stack:

  • iFrame Embed uses a bare-minimum of code and offers the widest compatibility with different themes and frameworks.

  • Leaflet.js / Open Street Maps reduces branding, keeps more of the codebase local to your website and provides extra code options for customising the radar loop animation sequence buttons.

To use the stack, simply install it into RapidWeaver in the normal way. Open your Stacks Library and search for ‘Radar’. Drag and drop a copy of the stack into your webpage. Within the stacks side panel, you have various settings to customise the behaviour and style of your weather radar map.

Please note: a caching bug in RapidWeaver Preview mode may result in the radar visuals not updating immediately when you make changes to either the Radar Graphics or Map Type. The workaround solution is to preview the page in a normal web browser (e.g. Firefox, Safari or Chrome).

If I manage to find a decent enough weather forecasting API that doesn’t cost a fortune I may still look at putting together an actual 5-day or 7-day forecasting stack. But so far, I’ve not found anything suitable to use yet.

In the spirit of FOSS (free and open source software) Radar is available as a free download here.


Thanks Will. As always, you are awesome.

  1. Just curious, what is your favorite iOS weather app?

The best $1.99 I’ve spent was for RadarCast, which could accurately predict precipitation 95% of the time, where the time was within 10 minutes of the first raindrop. The developer was WeatherSphere.

Unfortunately WeatherSphere replaced RadarCast with an app actually named WeatherSphere, but it sucks.

I’ve moved on to Accuweather, which is okay, but not like RadarCast.

I’m hoping you have a great iOS recommendation.

The best iOS weather app (IMHO) is Dark Sky. It’s only the non-Apple API that’s been deprecated, AFAIK.

My favorite iOS weather app is WeatherMate Pro.

Thank you for the suggestion.

I downloaded the free version of WeatherMate, and it’s very good. Does the Pro version predict precipitation? If so, how accurately?

If you have interest in live chasing check out MyRadar - during bad weather it is common to get feeds from weather chasers. When a weather chaser goes live an icon pops up on the map, you tap the icon and you are riding along with them. Live radar push notices will tell you when rain is coming and a decent prediction of how long it will last.

I honestly don’t know about the free version. I bought the paid version year’s ago, when all they offered was a paid app.

The paid version is very customizable in what order items get displayed. It does give you an hour by hour screen that shows percent of precipitation. I would say it’s probably as accurate as any forecast can be.

It’s loaded with options like radar screens that allow you to determine what overlays you want like satellite and radar, temperature, dew point, windstream and more.

You have the option of selecting the weather station(s) and if you want to use Private Weather Stations (PWS) or airport only stations.

I have had the app for years and early on I contacted the developers with some requests for improvements (like blacklisting inaccurate PWS’s and options to use only airport stations for current location) and the were fast to add these options.

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