Re: This is embarrassing to the NWS...

> Well, I'm not too happy about it either, but, in defense of the NWS, I can
> find no reference to any documentation stating the encryption would be
> removed "on" the 1st of January.  Most (all?) of the docs I've seen say
> "after the January 1, 2001 termination of the NIDS contract...."
> (Granted, it is a very subtle distinction, but it is different
> none-the-less.)

Look at the NOUS40 bulletins that came out over the past 6 months that
explicitly say so.'s the ice on the cake. Julie Hayes, the most
excellent NWS to private vendor coordinator for NOAAPORT/FOS issues, was
not happy about it, and when she talked to her superiors about it,
they got mad at her and chewed her out. She really wasn't happy then! To
avoid embarrasment, the NWS hasn't put out any statements indicating that
the new official date is January 10th. That's just shameful.

> Now, my understanding of the NOAAPORT system may be flawed, but I think
> the NWS's primary mission with NOAAPORT is AWIPS.  If the software at each
> NWS site is not ready for unencrypted products, then we'll just have to
> wait.  I believe they have no direct obligation to universities and other
> private entities who have the resources to receive these data streams.

I believe that if they say they will do something, they are obligated to
provide it, or at least an explanation why they didn't. They *do* have a
direct obligation to us. NOAAport is an officially supported product from
the National Weather Service; they have decreed that they are completely
responsible for 24 hour maintenance and support of that and all FOS
services, including the timely report of any problems with any service.

> BUT:  I also believe that Gilbert's desire for even a simple explanation
> is well-founded, and maybe the folks at Unidata can help us out here?

Well, my question prompted a number of sources off-line to give me the
skinny, and you know who you are...a VERY big thank you. So, let me make
this clear, since the National Weather Service is not: The official
starting data for NIDS unencryption is January 10th, at a time TBA. The
reason for the delay is that AWIPS build 4.3.3 has not been installed at
all sites, and that version (and later ones) has the capability to send
out the NIDS data. Look at the encrypted NIDS feed and you can figure out
who doesn't have it installed, by sites who aren't sending anything.

As one person put it, NOAAport is awesome, but it's offset by poor
customer service (outside of Julie Hayes and her department...this is
NOT her fault that she can't send out these messages!), and data
outages. Anyone else notice that when NOAAPORT/SBN died yesterday, the
live radar data on their web sites also stopped working? But...the NIDS
vendors got the data via the multicast.

C'mon NWS, this is unprofessional at best...

Gilbert Sebenste                                                     ********
Internet: gilbert@xxxxxxx    (My opinions only!)                     ******
Staff Meteorologist, Northern Illinois University                      ****
E-mail: sebenste@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx                                 ***
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Work phone: 815-753-5492                                                *