Aviation Weather Center to debut web page upgrades

Date Posted: March 13, 2014
NWS Brownsville/Rio Grande Valley Forecaster Maria Torres with Pastor Abiel Ake at the Radio Esperanza studios in Edinburg, Texas

The NWS Aviation Weather Center will roll out a design refresh of the center's www.AviationWeather.gov website on March 25, 2014. Users will be able to access and comment on the upgrade prior to full deployment.

This design refresh is the continuation of a phased effort to update the entire NWS web presence and to improve customer access to information and services. The goal of this phase is to improve content organization, navigation, look and feel, functionality, and usability of www.AviationWeather.gov as well as to improve access from mobile devices.

The upgrade follows the National Weather Service overall web page refresh started in late 2012 and provides the same look and feel as the main weather.gov site.

"This change provided an opportunity to review the whole Aviation Weather Center web design layout and to provide pilots, briefers and other users a more interactive experience," said AWC director Bob Maxson. "The current web site is more than 10 years old and needed an update to ensure all systems and previous upgrades were compatible. Some of our old displays no longer function with modern software and browsers. Users have cited better interactivity with mobile devices as a desired need."

Installation of upgrades over the years led to a lack of consistency, according to Maxon, so the refresh better organizes the menu and navigation structure – web pages are unified under a consistent layout. Additionally, the older legacy pages have been preserved temporarily on the revamped site as users transition to the new page.

Another concern of users is the somewhat disorganized approach to the old web design. Upgrades and changes to the web site over the years led to a lack of consistency throughout the web site, and made page navigation less user friendly.

Some benefits of the new web site include:

  • Consistent Page Layout
  • Simplified URLs
  • No Pop-ups
  • URL Parameters
  • Mobile Support
  • OpenLayers GIS Displays
  • Plot de-cluttering through priority sourcing

Users and the public may examine the new web page structure before March 25, 2014, at http://new.aviationweather.gov.

The main page has descriptions of improvements and tutorials on the new site. Users can provide feedback directly to developers at http://new.aviationweather.gov/contact.