FSL Website Redesigned to Provide Faster Access to NOAA/FSL Science

With most sectors of the U.S. economy relying to some extent on NOAA's information services, easy access to all of NOAA's online data and weather products is integral to public planning and safety. Last month the Forecast Systems Laboratory released an updated version of its Website, http://esrl.noaa.gov/gsd/. The design, developed by the FSL World Wide Web Working Group over the last six months, utilizes new Web technology and trends to provide quicker access to FSL's technology, research findings, and data. From the main site, users can locate general information about the laboratory or specific information on the weather, data, projects, publications, and so on.

The site was redesigned to better organize existing top-level pages and to accommodate additional projects undertaken within FSL during recent years. Pull-down boxes reduce the number of mouse clicks needed to find specific information. For example, a click on "Data" brings up real-time data from the NOAA Profiler Network, GPS-IPW networks, Real-Time Verification System, surface observations (to name a few), and other datasets such as retrospective data covering days, years, or decades. The homepage displays a dynamic graphical image, changing every time the page is reloaded, that shows many of FSL's current weather products, and includes links to the appropriate FSL research site. The "Weather" category displays forecasts and analyses, including those from RUC, LAPS, and MM5 models, observations, and current weather conditions. Information on high-performance computing, systems development, observing systems, and data assimilation is located under "Projects." Each page at the site can now be accessed even if Javascript is turned off.

The strategy used to redesign the FSL Website was presented by Robin Paschall, FSL's Webmaster, at the recent 2004 NOAA WebShop. Since user feedback is very important in helping us continue to improve navigation of this site, our customers are invited to provide feedback via the link at the bottom of the main FSL Website.

Contact information
Name: Rhonda K. Lange
Tel: 303-497-6045