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Weather from Microsoft Start: AI-powered precision in forecasting


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Staff member
Nov 29, 2020
In weather forecasting, accuracy reigns supreme. An inaccurate forecast can ruin a barbecue, shorten an outdoor walk or change your weekend plans, but in many cases, the stakes are much higher, and AI can help. With AI technology, the Weather team has taken a unique approach to create more accurate forecast models using diverse types of data, and better data delivers better results. For the second consecutive year, Weather from Microsoft Start was named the “overall most accurate weather forecast provider globally” by ForecastWatch*. With AI-technology driving improvement in its predictions, Microsoft is setting a new standard, and the 2023 report* reaffirms the industry-leading position. This independent study of 22 weather services for the entire year of 2023 evaluated 13 different metrics. Weather from Microsoft Start had the top scores for multiple metrics including high and low temperature predictions and cloud cover forecasts. This included forecasts for 1-5 days out. In fact, Weather from Microsoft Start’s total first place percentages were 11% higher than last year and the lead from the nearest competitor grew by 4%. So how did this happen? AI technology ushers in a new era of weather forecasting Weather forecasting has traditionally used supercomputers and large-scale physics simulations. Weather from Microsoft Start reimagined weather forecasting using AI, bringing together massive weather datasets, large scale computation models, mapping and topography data plus real-time reports from users. This comprehensive, data-driven approach makes it possible to offer a complete range of solutions to users, from up-to-the-minute rain and snow “nowcast” predictions, cloud cover forecasting and modeling, and even new 30-day forecasts, all with better accuracy than was previously possible. We are very proud of our Weather Team’s innovative spirit, applying the power of AI to weather models. This gives great user benefit today, with a clear trajectory to even greater achievements. Improving weather preparedness on a global scale Extreme weather impacts to people and property are becoming increasingly common, but better forecast data can help. In March 2024, over 150 billion weather notifications were sent to Microsoft users, including 9 billion severe weather alerts. Weather from Microsoft Start is a proud ambassador of NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation, an initiative committed to informing and preparing citizens of weather dangers, and is also a strong part of the UN's Early Warnings for All initiative focused on providing weather warnings for every global citizen. This makes sense when you remember that Weather from Microsoft Start is integrated natively into Windows. Taskbar alerts combined with detailed, interactive maps, charts and even AI-powered insights make this a powerful and comprehensive tool. In addition to Windows, the most accurate weather forecaster provider globally is integrated into Edge, MSN, Bing, the Microsoft Start mobile app and more. Weather from Microsoft Start delivers accurate information and insights, helping people make more informed decisions to keep them and their loved ones safe. By improving weather forecast accuracy and availability in partnership with government agencies, this is another way Microsoft delivers on its mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. *ForecastWatch, Weather from Microsoft Start ForecastWatch Report January–December 2023 - Microsoft Start Blog (msn.com)

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This should be entertaining. Weather forecasting in the past was purely based on statistical analysis of a huge pool of collected historical data. Global warming (I hate that term, more like climate change) has skewed that data making pure forecasting based on past events not so accurate. So yes we need to survey the current trends and adjust the forecasting placing more weight on current trends anallysis coupled with traditional weather trends. This winter in the US was a very good example of that. The West coast saw rainfall amounts that haven't occured in decades although in past centuries were common place. That trend extended into the Mid-States in the Country as well.
If there is one factor that can't be ignored, as water temps rise, evaporation rates do to to cool these bodies of water. That increases rainfall, violent storms as the Earth dissipates excess energy just like it did in the past. I am a degreed Biologist and we were taught the philosophy promoted by Lynn Margulis; The Earth as a living thing. This would explain what is happening now, with the weather Homeostasis. Look it up if you are interested.