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|XML Product Advantages
There are several advantages to the new XML products over their
legacy tabular counterparts.
Data Format – There will be a logical
format to the data. The Forecast and observations products
will be separate products. Customers and partners will now
have access to as much or little data as they need.
Reliability – The four new XML production
process and product creation will be automated. One of the
main problems with the production of the current product suite
is the fact that its labor intensive and frequently requires
manually intervention. Automation means that customers and
partners will have access to more reliable issuance of products.
Flexibility – The four new XML products
will offer greater flexibility. XML is easier for customers
and partners to choose the output and data they want. The NWS
can add additional cities, weather elements, times with no
adverse affect to customers and partners software.
Frequency – The XML products will be
issued more frequently. The FOX3, FOX7, and ObX products will
be issued hourly, and the TEX will be issued four times a day
(00,06,12,18 UTC). One of the main benefits in moving to hourly
observations will be that the West Coast observation timing
problem can be fixed. Currently, the SCS/TAV products are issued
twice a day for each day. For many western cities, overnight
low and daytime high temperatures reported in the legacy text
SCS are not credible since the issuance times are frequently
before the temperature has reached its maximum/minimum value.
Hourly issuance of the ObX product and the addition of the
high/low so far today weather elements will solve this problem.
Access to more data – The XML products means customers
and partners will have access to more data. Additional information
currently not available in the SCS/TAV text products include,
Character of Day (CoD) for nighttime, and High/Low Temperatures “so
far” today/tonight respectively.
Replacements for text products – The
four new XML products could eventually replace the legacy text
products. Tools like eXtensible Stylesheet Language Transformation
(XSLT) stylesheets can translate an XML document into text.
This would make it possible for customers and partners to create
as many products as they want, tailoring them to their needs.