In the eyes of Weather Underground’s ardent fans, the Weather Channel appears to represent the wrong kind of weather information: personality-driven sunniness and hype, they say, rather than the pure science of data. As Mike Tucker, a computer professional in New Hampshire, put it on Facebook, reacting to news of the deal: “Nooooooooooooooooo! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!”And the radical group — is it really okay to wink at terrorists? — got its name from Bob Dylan's "Subterranean Homesick Blues": "You don’t need a weatherman/To know which way the wind blows." My post title refers to another Bob Dylan song "All Along The Watchtower": "Two riders were approaching, the wind began to howl."
The controversy illustrates the deep national divide between those people who just want to know if it’s going to rain, and people who really, really, care about the data underlying the weather. Christopher Maxwell, a manager at a solar energy company in Richmond, Va., is in the really-really-cares-about-the-weather camp. He said he saw the Weather Channel deal as a sad sellout for Weather Underground.
“It seems to happen all the time,” he said. “Something great gets invented and sold in the United States, and it gets bought up and destroyed.”
Weather Underground was founded in 1995 in Ann Arbor, where it grew out of the University of Michigan’s online weather database. The name was a winking reference to the radical group that also had its roots in Ann Arbor....
Now, from the first-linked article, I see:
[Wunderground and Weatherbug] are dwarfed by Weather.com and the other properties owned by the Weather Channel, which is owned by a consortium that includes Comcast, Bain Capital and the Blackstone Group. The Weather Channel sites draw almost 50 million visitors a month. But only half of Weather Underground’s users also use Weather.com in a given month, which might be considered a silent protest of sorts.Bain Capital!
You know, it's 2012 and 2 riders are approaching. Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Barack Obama... Bill Ayers... Weather Underground. Make your own connections. Mitt Romney... Bain... Weather Channel....
"'There must be some way out of here,' said the joker to the thief/'There’s too much confusion, I can’t get no relief'/Businessmen, they drink my wine, plowmen dig my earth/None of them along the line know what any of it is worth..."
Do you think this is but a joke?