Even if the location info is "anonymous", you can probably detect members of Congress from the movement pattern.
The rolling over when a lobbiest walks in?
I'm still at loss how that form of corruption is not just legal but apparently completely accepted in the US.
PACs and other organizations that do lobbying can spend money on an independent campaign (Citizen's United), but they can't give it to the candidate.
Way more insidious than campaign contributions is the "revolving door" where former elected officials are hired as lobbyists or consultants as a deferred award for their support during their tenure.
A web search turns up e.g. https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/economy/news/2015/06...
Or more recently and pointedly, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-congress-cbo-idUSKBN1...
Or you can find many other sources from the past 25 years discussing this.
The Congress should be robustly funding the Congressional Research Service, the Government Accountability Office, the Congressional Budget Office, committee staff, individual members’ staff, etc. But one party does not want the Congress to build up long-term institutional expertise or do careful independent analysis.
Are you typing from the past? The 5k rule means nothing in today's world of dark money. A lobbyist can give unlimited amounts to third parties, organizations that will either support a campaign or not. Or they can just spend the money themselves. A billionaire may only be allowed to hand over 5k in cash, but they can spend millions on people to attack you online. So you listen to those lobbyists with the deepest pockets because they pose your greatest threat.
I've always been very skeptical of the fact that high ranking and influential politicians (eg: ones that a lobbyist would want to influence) always seem to have a "non-profit" charity foundation, while low ranking politicians (ones who aren't high enough on the totem pole to be worth influencing) infrequently or rarely have non-profit charity foundations.
It's always about loopholes and indirect payments.
> Congress needs experts for information.
That's what members and committees have staff for (and, in a broader sense, what the US government has an executive branch which Congress sets the rules governing and required to report to them for.)
Lobbyists don't work for Congress in the public interest, they work for actors that want Congress to serve those actors' private interests.
With the current set of laws in the US, it pretty much is. Also, congress needs Janitors.. but we don't excoriate ourselves over the impossibility of getting that work done, we just hire and pay a janitor for their work.
With the DNC and RNC raking in so much money every year, I find it amazingly hard to believe that they're lacking for expert advice.
Off the cuff, I am of the opinion that this is the root of the problem. We live in 2019, not 1819.. it's simply _not_ that hard for a congressperson to be "in touch" with their constituency.
> and convince them why passing this particular law is a good idea.
I don't want them _convinced_ I want them to be _informed_. There's a huge difference.
> I think you will find that just as many good laws were the result of a lobbyist
Yea, it _can_ work.. but we _should_ we rely on that? I would say given the high-mindedness of those who founded this country and the set of laws the left us, the answer should be a resounding "No."
For instance, I think think of lobbying broadly as the 'gears' of democracy, from one individual sending an email about an issue to an organized entity using their collective powers for change.
However, I think the distinction is most people think of lobbying as a special sort of 'relationship capitalization' that happens on the Hill; I'm not hiring Group X because they can best funnel my grassroots to the grasstops (though that exists) but rather I hire Group X because my account manager used to work at Dirksen and is friends with current target COS. This selling of connections, relationships, etc is what I think understandably makes people wary of lobbying.
Congress should hire some, then.
"I'm an expert, and I would like to give you some advice... for free, plus I'll give your campaign money!" should be suspicious.
Indirectly? In the post-Citizens United world, it's literally unbounded. Not to mention a lobbyist is free to:
1. Organize a fund-raises for the politicians campaign. They can't pay $100k directly, but they can sell 100 seats for $1000 each.
2. With a wink and hand=-shake, pffer the politician a job in the future.
What you seem to be describing - disguising a donation from one individual to a politician that is over the contribution limit as several donations from different many different people - was and still is illegal.
The fund-raiser would also be legal. There is no masking of donations - those attending the fund-raiser do pay for their tickets. Nothing prevents a lobbyist from doing the legwork to make the fund-raiser happen.
Main point being, despite legal limits on direct donations, there are many ways a lobbyist can facilitate the flow of money from special interests into the pockets of politicians.
You're still misrepresenting reality and when you say that this functions to "facilitate the flow of money from special interests into the pockets of politicians." This money never enters the pockets of politicians. If that happens, it is a violation of the law.
Definitely certain PACs benefit certain politicians over others. A PAC organized to promote environmentalism is probably going to help Democrats a lot more than Republicans. But it is not correct in any way to say that this money is funneled to the politicians themselves. The politician does not hold the purse strings of PAC money, the PAC can decide at any time to stop promoting items aligned with that politician.
https://mobile.weather.gov is really nice lightweight website with no ads.
Your favored website may soon enough be taken down in order to enrich the Myers family, but it will be packaged as reducing costs or not "competing with industry" aka AccuWeather.
Stuff like this and the shenanigans at the FCC w/ Net Neutrality really makes me rethink the concept of these types appointments not having more public involvement.
"On October 28, 2015 IBM officially announced an agreement to acquire The Weather Company’s business-to-business, mobile and cloud-based web properties, including Weather Underground, WSI, weather.com, and also the Weather Company brand."
IBM buys firms and then proceeds to eviscerate them.
Value destruction is their strong suit.
But, honestly, I love weather.gov. The local forecast (at least for the Pittsburgh area) is plain text, easy to understand (if you read the definitions), and updated multiple times per day. Plus, it has in depth forecasting for rain/snow/etc.
I stopped using weather.com because it would routinely crash my mobile browser. I suspect because it ran out of memory.
https://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lat=<your latitude goes here>&lon=-<your longitude goes here>&unit=0&lg=english&FcstType=graphical is my favorite.
Just substitute your XX.XXXX latitude and your YY.YYYY longitude (negative from 0 if you're in the US) for the <> and their contents as variables.
There's also a tabular form of this. Very dense in terms of hourly forecasts. I tend to plug in various lat/long changes to figure out when a storm is going to blow into the kid's sporting event clear across town. Each degree of latitude or longitude is 68.3 miles, so you can usually just adjust the URL to get a pinpoint forecast...which is useful in metro areas where you might be traveling 40-45 miles to an event.
That's only for latitude, longitude depends on latitude, so lon = cosine(lat) * 69.172
In 2008, AccuWeather named Conrad Lautenbacher, a recently departed NOAA administrator appointed by President George W. Bush, to its board. Myers was soon appointed to a NOAA working group that gave him a role in shaping policy. He helped fashion one in 2012 that restricted the organization’s ability to develop mobile apps for the public.
This is the same guy nominated by the Trump adminstration and currently awaiting Senate confirmation as the head honcho of NOAA.
I mean, the forecast isn't accurate far enough in advance to make most plans, and the weather today is usually obvious from any window, at least as far as I can actually use the info (which is how warmly to dress), but realistically I never pay attention and just dress for the season and it never seems like the difference day-to-day matters.
I definitely value forecasting hurricanes/blizzards/tornadoes, but that doesnt seem to be the general attraction.
And here in New England, knowing if it's going to rain or snow on the weekend, might effect what plans you make. We also have times of the year where the temperature can change 40F or more between morning and afternoon.
So looking out the window and deciding how warmly to dress, can leave you pretty uncomfortable later in the day. :)
This depends on your location. Cities immediately east of a large city get very good forecasts. The reason is that, like with any other industry, better people end up in larger cities. This gives the large cities better forecasts, and there is a halo effect eastward since in the United States weather generally travels west to east.
the weather today is usually obvious from any window
There are a lot of places in the nation, and the world, where weather changes rapidly and often. Many people who live in these places use the phrase, "If you don't like the weather, just wait." And each thinks it invented the phrase.
I never pay attention and just dress for the season and it never seems like the difference day-to-day matters
Be glad you have the luxury of living in a place with very stable weather. Or be sad that you don't travel enough to understand that the weather is variable in most places on earth.
This isn't the case for me in NYC. Anything within the next two days is fairly accurate.
I use the day's temperature info to decide what to wear in the morning. I use the UV index to decide if I need sunscreen. And while I don't use umbrella's, I know coworkers use the weather to decide if they should bring an umbrella.
Plans that involve the outdoors rarely involve only two days notice for me - plans are either spontaneous or in more than a week. Then again, my plans rarely involve the outdoors.
> UV index to decide if I need sunscreen
My skin tone is known as "fish belly", so I always need sunblock, but unless I'm planning to be outside at length (which I largely dont do) I dont really do so.
> decide what to wear in the morning
I may be odd, but my day to day wear doesn't really vary other than by season. When I lived in Pennsylvania and Virginia the weather changed dramatically enough over the day that dressing lighter or warmer was an invitation for problems. Now that I'm in Seattle, the weather is fairly consistent over the day, but I've never found myself wishing I had known the forecast when I dressed.
> I don't use umbrella's
Mostly the same, particularly here in Seattle. Before, if it was raining hard the need was obvious, and if it wasn't I didn't want to carry around something is just lose before I needed it.
I'm not trying to poop on your feedback (really!), it's just these are largely the arguments I've heard that dont seem to apply to me. Do people really spend that much more time outside than I do? Am I some sort of sky-avoiding freak?
It's the issue of competing norms - the weather (or at least, foreknowledge of it) doesn't affect how I dress or my activities for 350+ days of the year, over decades, living in multiple parts of the US, so it's hard to grasp that it does actually impact a notable portion of people. Clearly it does, and I've not questioned that (or at least I didn't intend to question that), but having more people tell me that it really, truly does hasn't changed my emotional incredulity that that is the case.
However I think I've also explained why I find the information incredibly useful, for different reasons than you. It's an incredibly valuable service to me and most of my immediate peers.
When I neglect to check the weather in the morning, I do things like wear a long sleeved shirt that becomes overly hot in the middle of the day, because the weather had felt slightly chilly that morning. I work in an indoor office, but I go out to get lunch, and it's nice to not be overly hot or cold.
I will say that I find weather forecasts more useful in Spring and Fall than Summer or Winter. Right now, the answer to "what should I wear?" is almost always "thick clothes and a coat!" But then, there are also exceptions, and using the weather forecast to spot them is great.
(Actually, speaking of temperature, something I didn't mention—my apartment is always hot, so even with the window open, it's often hard to judge the current outdoor temperature without an app.)
Edit: Also, whatever your complexion: if the UV Index is 0, you don't need sunscreen. And if the UV Index is 12+, you absolutely should have sunscreen even if you're inside most of the day. It's worth checking!
You have, and your reasons are likewise reasonable - I just struggle to believe that there are so many people that are similar (but again, there clearly are - my struggle to understand doesn't change the facts). People who bike to work, for example, have lots of reasons to care about the weather...yet I seriously doubt that covers a significant portion of people that create the demand for weather apps.
Women tend to have more varied fashion and layers than men, so they would logically be more impacted by weather, yet there's no shortage of men that want that weather info. I get that they do...but I still have troubles accepting that my normal isn't, you know, _normal_.
Haha, have you noticed how half of the cars suddenly have ski racks as of the past month or so?
Supposedly, companies like Accuweather have been working for years to eliminate government weather services that are readily usable by consumers.
Phone OEM's always have to include a crappy global one for some reason.
(A previous version used to show the normal weather forecast in an iframe to the left of the charts, too)
It's just a single HTML page, I've put a script to make them over here:
It's government owned so no data collection. I'm not sure how useful it is outside of Norway but I have used it successfully when visiting other countries in EU. I think it also worked in Mexico but I can't really remember.
Yr pretty popular here in Canada, it tends to be better than Environment Canada or TheWeatherNetwork.com at predicting precipitation, and similar for temperature.
> The weather data used in the Weather app comes from The Weather Channel. If you have issues getting accurate weather information, tap the icon in the lower-left corner to go directly to the weather source.
If you have an iPhone and are in the US, a home screen shortcut to mobile.weather.gov is much safer. Avoid putting the site in web browser new tab Favorites, which will be pinged by Safari even if you don't visit the site. This can be seen with Charles Proxy.
No other information about you or your device is provided anywhere in the request url or headers. No other requests were made to api.weather.com during "check the weather" testing.
This probably works better with "My Home AP Uses A Cute Name That's Hilarious" if your IP rarely changes and you have other software leaking data to IBM, but less well for "xfinitywifi".
Again, I'm not an expert here, and would be happy to learn more about whether this sort of data collection is possible.
edit: this is quite an interesting rabbit-hole I've stumbled into. It seems that there are databases correlating SSID to location, but aren't collecting IP addresses of those networks:
That's available freely on the web. Hedge funds and others buying data from IBM can buy data from higher quality sources, including wireless carriers, financial institutions and data brokers.
Do you have an example of an IP address that geolocates to its homeowner's actual address (as opposed to region/city?)
Again, geolocation databases are not magical. This article explains that and some deficiencies:
I don’t think that Apple has any technical privacy measures in place here, but I would be deeply surprised if, after all their pro-privacy advertising, they allowed a default app to be (at the contractual level) a giant privacy risk for their customers.
They do not.
Apple ships an app "Weather", which currently uses api.weather.com as the data source.
IBM Weather Channel operates api.weather.com.
TLDR: You're both right: it's Apple Weather, and it requests from IBM directly. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=18822350
Care to link to where this "easily available" source code is? I tried searching for it and couldn't find it.
The backend code that seems to handle the REST call with user's lat/lon is still available.
Fortunately I cloned the Android repo locally. If you're interested I can reupload it somewhere. It's Apache licensed and I paid for a fraction of its development, so I think I'd be legally and morally in the clear to share it.
They have an app also but I just use the website.
I wondered why they wanted it...
This took me approx. two minutes longer to find than it should have.
Why say something so stupid instead of issuing a simple “no comment”?
and love for those who still use desktops too:
1. Does Apple’s contract with TWC allow them to market individual-level data to advertisers in the same way that TWC can with their own app? It would be shocking if the answer was “yes”.
2. To what level of resolution is the default Weather app lat/long data, compared to third party apps?