Re: Weather in GNOME (again)

On Sat, 2012-12-01 at 19:49 +0100, Giovanni Campagna wrote:
> Hello desktop-devel-list,
> This is just a heads up that I opened a new repository at
> for the GNOME Weather app I had previously announced.
> This is a lot better than it was the last time, and thanks to the just
> pushed updates to libgweather, it should support weather forecasts for
> all the world, using the free service.
> Of course there is a lot more to do, but I still hope that
> gnome-weather can be included as a preview for GNOME 3.8, like we did
> for clocks in 3.6.
> Basic functionality is there: you choose your location, and the
> weather data is fetched from the network. For next steps, besides some
> obvious ones like the about dialog or preferences for metric vs
> imperial units, I'd like to hear from designers, if for example it
> should move to a GNOME 3 content grid and main toolbar, or if the
> current minimal approach is fine.
> Additionally, this is call for help, sort of. libgweather 3.7.3 will
> include two weather backends in addition to the existing one (which
> was US only). The first one is Yahoo! Weather, the second one is
>, the Norwegian metereology service.
> To access these services, we need to extend the location database. In
> particular, Yahoo! weather uses a proprietary WOEID (Where On Earth
> Id), which can be queried using its geocoding service (or
> geocode-glib), but is not included in the database,

The WOEID isn't currently exported from geocode-glib. I've added this as
a TODO item for geocode-glib, which it would be great to deal with
before I make a full release.

>  while has
> one entry point using geographical coordinates, and another one using
> GeoNames.

geocode-glib can help there, by making searches on the user's input.

>  The amount of information varies among them, but in general
> has less data than Yahoo! Weather, so it would be very nice if
> you could update the location db, adding the woeid for your city or
> place, and ensuring that the city or place name in the db matches the
> one in GeoNames (including the region or other administrative
> subdivision).

I'm not certain this is necessary. Getting the weather requires the
network, so I would think that querying the online database from the
user's input would be best.

If you still wanted to fill in the Locations.xml file, you could
automate this. For each item, make a forward geocoding request, and look
the results that's closest to the location's coordinates (you can use
geocode_location_get_distance_from() for that), and populate the WOEID
like that.

> Also, it would be very helpful if you could review the contents of the
> location db for your region, and possibly replace the city name with
> one that is big and recognizable enough, in place of the town actually
> hosting the weather station, as currently in the db, as well as
> cross-checking the coordinates with Google Maps or some other service.

Again, I think this could be automated.

> Yes, my plan is eventually to integrate geocode-glib in the location
> entry, so it will be possible to have locations not stored in the
> offline db, but I still think it is useful to keep it up-to-date. In
> particular, if I ever write code fro that, I think I will continue
> referring to the offline db for weather stations.

I'd be looking into doing something similar for timezone selection in
the date and time panel. It's quite unfortunate that only forward
searches with a single result will return a timezone.


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