Second warmest September on record for the globe

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:49 PM GMT on October 16, 2009

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The globe recorded its second warmest September since record keeping began in 1880, according to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center. The combined global land and ocean temperature anomaly was 0.62°C (1.12°F), falling only 0.04°C (0.07°F) short of tying the record set in 2005. NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies also rated September 2009 as the 2nd warmest September on record, falling 0.02°C short of the record set in 2005. It was the 33rd consecutive September with a global temperature above the 20th century average. NOAA rated the year-to-date period, January - September 2009, as the sixth warmest such period on record. The September satellite-measured temperatures for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were the 2nd warmest on record, behind 1998. Global ocean Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies, however, cooled a bit, and were the 5th warmest on record. Global SSTs were the warmest on record during the Northern Hemisphere summer, June - August.


Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for September 2009. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center.

A warm September for the U.S., and record heat in the West
For the contiguous U.S., the average September temperature was 1.0°F above average, making it the 32nd warmest September in the 115-year record, according to the National Climatic Data Center. The West had is warmest September on record, with Nevada and California recording their warmest September, and six other western states observing a top-ten warmest September--Montana (3rd warmest), North Dakota (3rd), Idaho (4th), Utah (5th), Minnesota (6th), and Oregon (8th). However, a combination a slow-moving storm system during the beginning of the month and two surface cold fronts during the last week resulted in much below normal temperature averages in Kansas (10th coolest) and Oklahoma (11th coolest). The year-to-date (January - September) period was the 29th warmest such period for the contiguous U.S.

U.S. precipitation near average
U.S. precipitation in September was exactly average. Statewide-averaged rainfall was among the ten wettest for four southern states (Arkansas, 2nd wettest; Tennessee (5th), Mississippi (6th), and Alabama (6th)). Maine and Wisconsin each experienced their fourth driest September and both New Hampshire and Michigan had their seventh driest such periods.

U.S. drought
At the end of September, 15% of the contiguous United States was in moderate-to-exceptional drought. This is a drop from the 19% figure observed at the beginning of the year. Exceptional drought (the worst category of drought) was seen in South to Central Texas, though the area covered by exceptional drought shrank by 50% over the past month, thanks to much-needed rains over the region.

U.S. fire activity
During September, 5,535 fires burned approximately 378,523 acres, each of which was below the 2000 - 2009 average for the month. The acreage lost to wildfire was roughly half of the 2000 - 2009 average. For the year to date (January.September), 70,217 fires was slightly above the 10-year average, while acreage burned was slightly less than average.

Weak El Niño conditions continue
El Niño conditions continue over the tropical Eastern Pacific. Ocean temperatures in the area 5°N - 5°S, 120°W - 170°W, also called the "Niña 3.4 region", were 0.3°C above the threshold for a weak El Niño, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. NOAA's Climate Prediction Center is maintaining an El Niño Advisory. Current conditions and model forecasts favor the continued development of a weak-to-moderate strength El Niño event into the Northern Hemisphere Fall 2009, with the likelihood of at least a moderate strength El Niño (3-month Niño-3.4 SST index of +1.0°C or greater) during the Northern Hemisphere Winter 2009-10.

September sea ice extent in the Arctic 3rd lowest on record
September 2009 Northern Hemisphere sea ice extent was the 3rd lowest since satellite measurements began in 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC). Only 2007 and 2008 saw lower Arctic sea ice extent. Both the Northwest Passage and Northeast Passage melted free, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. This marks the second consecutive year--and the second time in recorded history--both of these Arctic shipping routes have melted free. The past five years have had the five lowest Arctic ice extents on record. In their 2009 report on this year's Arctic sea ice minimum, NSIDC Director and Senior Scientist Mark Serreze said, "It's nice to see a little recovery over the past couple years, but there's no reason to think that we're headed back to conditions seen back in the 1970s. We still expect to see ice-free summers sometime in the next few decades". Only 19% of the ice cover this summer in the Arctic was over 2 years old, the least in the satellite record, and far below the 1981 - 2000 average of 52%. NSIDC Scientist Walt Meier said, "We've preserved a fair amount of first-year ice and second-year ice after this summer compared to the past couple of years. If this ice remains in the Arctic through the winter, it will thicken, which gives some hope of stabilizing the ice cover over the next few years. However, the ice is still much younger and thinner than it was in the 1980s, leaving it vulnerable to melt during the summer". Earlier this summer, NASA researcher Ron Kwok and colleagues from the University of Washington in Seattle published satellite data showing that Arctic ice thickness declined by 0.68 meters (2.2 feet) between 2004 and 2008. The overall mean winter thickness was 3.64 meters in 1980, and 1.89 meters during the winter of 2007 - 2008, a massive decrease of 48%.

References
Kwok, R., and D. A. Rothrock. 2009. Decline in Arctic sea ice thickness from submarine and ICESat records: 1958.2008, Geophys. Res. Lett., 36, L15501, doi:10.1029/2009GL039035.


Figure 2. Category 1 Typhoon Lupit in the Philippine Sea at 04:45 UTC October 16, 2009. Image credit: NASA MODIS Rapid Response System.

Tropical update
In the Atlantic, there are no threat areas to discuss, and none of the computer models is calling for tropical storm formation over the next week.

There are two potential serious threats in the Pacific. Tropical Storm Rick off the Pacific coast of Mexico is expected to recurve to the north and threaten Baja late next week. While Rick is expected to become a major hurricane early next week, the storm should weaken significantly before any potential landfall in Mexico, due to high wind shear and cooler ocean temperatures the storm will find as it approaches Baja.

More seriously, Typhoon Lupit in the Western Pacific is expected to intensify into a Category 4 typhoon and threaten the northern Philippines by Tuesday. Last week, Super Typhoon Parma crossed over the northern Philippines three times, dumping over twenty inches of rain in many locations. Over 300 people died in the resulting flash floods and landslides. A visit by Typhoon Lupit could create a major catastrophe in the northern Philippines as the storm dumps another 1 - 2 feet of rain on the already saturated soils.

My next post will be Sunday or Monday.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting atmoaggie:
And here is an example script...well a piece of one, anyway. For tcsh shells.

cd $analysis_DIR

date -u '+%m %b %d %Y %H %j' > DATE
set YYYY = `awk '{print $4}' DATE`
set MM = `awk '{print $1}' DATE`
set DD = `awk '{print $3}' DATE`
set HH = `awk '{print $5}' DATE`

set YYYYMMDDHH = $YYYY$MM$DD$HH
mkdir $analysis_DIR/results/$YYYYMMDDHH
cd $metar_dir

set ntries = 1

perl metarprocess.pl > observations
set ob_count = `wc -l observations | cut -d ' ' -f1`
if ( $ob_count < 100 )then
if ( $ntries < 3 ) then
@ ntries = $ntries + 1
sleep 30
goto getMETARS
else
echo "problems getting metar obs"
echo "problems getting metar obs" > analysis.txt
echo "for cressman analysis $YYYYMMDDHH" >> analysis.txt
set metar_check = no
set exit_code = 6
goto MailReport
endif
endif


I have much to learn, but I am getting paid to learn it, so its all good
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And here is an example script...well a piece of one, anyway. For tcsh shells. (This is the very beginnings of a script that runs every hour and retrieves all METARS, grabs forecast background wind fields, and performs a Cressman analysis)

cd $analysis_DIR

date -u ' %m %b %d %Y %H %j' > DATE
set YYYY = `awk '{print $4}' DATE`
set MM = `awk '{print $1}' DATE`
set DD = `awk '{print $3}' DATE`
set HH = `awk '{print $5}' DATE`

set YYYYMMDDHH = $YYYY$MM$DD$HH
mkdir $analysis_DIR/results/$YYYYMMDDHH
cd $metar_dir

set ntries = 1

perl metarprocess.pl > observations
set ob_count = `wc -l observations | cut -d ' ' -f1`
if ( $ob_count < 100 )then
if ( $ntries < 3 ) then
@ ntries = $ntries 1
sleep 30
goto getMETARS
else
echo "problems getting metar obs"
echo "problems getting metar obs" > analysis.txt
echo "for cressman analysis $YYYYMMDDHH" >> analysis.txt
set metar_check = no
set exit_code = 6
goto MailReport
endif
endif
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376. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
China Meteorological Administration
=====================================

** WTPQ20 BABJ 161800 ***
SUBJECTIVE FORECAST
TY LUPIT 0920 (0920) INITIAL TIME 161800 UTC
00HR 14.4N 133.3E 975HPA 33M/S (65 kts)
30KTS 400KM
50KTS 100KM
P12HR WNW 15KM/H
P+24HR 15.6N 131.0E 960HPA 40M/S (80 kts)
P+48HR 16.2N 130.3E 950HPA 45M/S (90 kts)
P+72HR 17.0N 128.3E 940HPA 50M/S (100 kts)
P+96HR 17.9N 124.3E 930HPA 55M/S= (110 kts)
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375. xcool


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Quoting atmoaggie:
t-dude,

here is a good cheat sheet of basic and not-so-basic Linux commands: http://www.unixguide.net/linux/linuxshortcuts.shtml (Some of these will only administrator-permissible, most are not)

Reading back, I see the $ discussion.

$ in most linux terminal shells is how you signal a variable name for scripting and is also the command prompt, if it is set to be so. "$" is not to be typed as the first character in a command when using a guide or source of commands. For example, if I type (with > just being the command prompt):
>Tdude="Number One"
>echo Tdude
Tdude
>echo $Tdude
Number One

(the above example is for Borne shells, not tcsh)


Ok, awesome, thanks!! I cant mess with it until monday tho :/

Quoting Meteorology101:
Hi guys.


hey Chris
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t-dude,

here is a good cheat sheet of basic and not-so-basic Linux commands: http://www.unixguide.net/linux/linuxshortcuts.shtml (Some of these will only administrator-permissible, most are not)

Reading back, I see the $ discussion.

$ in most linux terminal shells is how you signal a variable name for scripting and is also the command prompt, if it is set to be so. "$" is not to be typed as the first character in a command when using a guide or source of commands. For example, if I type (with > just being the command prompt):
>Tdude="Number One"
>echo Tdude
Tdude
>echo $Tdude
Number One

(the above example is for Borne shells, not tcsh)
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371. xcool
i.m back .

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Thank you! And the scout's mom, who just walked into my office, says thank you too!
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SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAMPA BAY AREA - RUSKIN FL
421 PM EDT FRI OCT 16 2009

FLZ049>051-162130-
PINELLAS-HILLSBOROUGH-PASCO-
421 PM EDT FRI OCT 16 2009

...STRONG THUNDERSTORMS WILL AFFECT SOUTHERN PASCO...NORTHWESTERN
HILLSBOROUGH AND PINELLAS COUNTIES...

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATES A LINE OF
THUNDERSTORMS...MOVING EAST AT 30 MPH...THAT WILL AFFECT AREAS FROM
AROUND NEW PORT RICHEY TO CLEARWATER...TAMPA AND SAINT PETERSBURG.

...UNTIL 530 PM EDT.

GUSTY WINDS UP TO 40 MPH WILL OCCUR. FREQUENT LIGHTNING IS EXPECTED.
TO BE SAFE GO INDOORS IMMEDIATELY. IF CAUGHT OUTSIDE...FIND A LOW
SPOT...AND STAY AWAY FROM TALL OBJECTS. TORRENTIAL RAINS WILL REDUCE
VISIBILITY TO NEAR ZERO AND WILL CAUSE PONDING OF WATER ON ROADWAYS.

&&
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Concerning that the ensemble mean moved out closer to the regular GFS solution on amplitude of the MJO...have to see if it sticks.

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Quoting miajrz:
12th straight record--94 at MIA. Monday morning's lows in the 50s per our local MWS. Could be an interesting weekend.
I know some scouts who are supposed to go camping in an hour or two. Is this a good idea?


Looks like most of the storms will be gone, and the line to the north doesnt appear to be building the far south.
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365. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
National Hurricane Center
Tropical Cyclone Warning #5
SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE RICK (EP202009)
21:00 PM UTC October 16 2009
=======================================

Subject: "Rick" Continues To Rapidly Intensify And Further Strengthening Is Forecasted

At 18:00 PM UTC, Hurricane Rick (981 hPa) located at 13.0N 100.0W or 235 NM south of Acapulco, Mexico has sustained winds of 75 knots with gusts of 90 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving west-northwest at 8 knots

Hurricane Force Winds
======================
20 NM from the center

Gale/Storm Force Winds
================
75 NM from the center

Forecast and Intensity
=======================
12 HRS: 13.2N 101.3W - 90 knots (SSHS-2 Cyclone)
24 HRS: 13.7N 103.3W - 105 knots (SSHS-3 Cyclone)
48 HRS: 15.0N 108.1W - 125 knots (SSHS-4 Cyclone)
72 HRS: 16.5N 111.5W - 120 knots (SSHS-4 Cyclone)
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Looks like CHIPS really wants to turn on the RI for a while on Rick.

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12th straight record--94 at MIA. Monday morning's lows in the 50s per our local MWS. Could be an interesting weekend.
I know some scouts who are supposed to go camping in an hour or two. Is this a good idea?
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Hah! What did I say about those upper 30s forecast lows, xcool?

Gone:

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around 50. North wind between 10 and 15 mph.

Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 64. North wind between 10 and 15 mph.

Saturday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 43. North wind between 10 and 15 mph.

Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 65. North wind between 10 and 15 mph.

Sunday Night: Clear, with a low around 43. North wind around 5 mph.

Monday: Sunny, with a high near 71.

Monday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 51.
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Ahhhhhhh



Pensacola, Florida (Airport)
Updated: 49 min 53 sec ago
Clear
67 °F
Clear
Humidity: 61%
Dew Point: 53 °F
Wind: 17 mph from the North
Wind Gust: 25 mph
Pressure: 29.91 in (Steady)
Visibility: 10.0 miles
UV: 5 out of 16
Clouds:
Clear -
(Above Ground Level)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting DookiePBC:
Can't wait for this front. Its currently 91, with a heat index of 98 here. Wouldn't mind a little bit of rain out of this front either. Keep having to drag the hose over to the pool.

Hey Tornadodude...see if they can't get you some bigger monitors. ;-)


haha I'll get right on that!
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Can't wait for this front. Its currently 91, with a heat index of 98 here. Wouldn't mind a little bit of rain out of this front either. Keep having to drag the hose over to the pool.

Hey Tornadodude...see if they can't get you some bigger monitors. ;-)
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Quoting jipmg:


expect some cool air after they pass through =D

amazing its in the 50s in southern alabama.. and low 60s on the panhandle in 4 in the afternoon


nice ill be looking for those temps soon, i think they were saying 69 tonight.
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356. jipmg
Quoting StormChaser81:


Ya im in st. pete and the sky is looking very ominous to the west


expect some cool air after they pass through =D

amazing its in the 50s in southern alabama.. and low 60s on the panhandle in 4 in the afternoon
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


storms are approaching or exceeding severe limits at the moment heading towards tampa


Ya im in st. pete and the sky is looking very ominous to the west
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The IPCC report, hah! Speaking of can't seeing the forest for the trees.

Quoting KarenRei:


You know what posts like yours always bring up in the minds of people who have actually read the IPCC report? "Oh God, where do I even start with someone like this?"

Probably the best place is here: there are many, many, *many* climate histories that have been built up from entirely different sources of data. Some are regional, some are global. We have ice cores from Greenland, ice cores from Antarctica, we have oceanic sediment cores, we have varves, we have all sorts of different types of dendrochronology records, we have mercury thermometers, we have satellites, we have buoys, we have coral clocks, we have algae deposits, we have ice extent records of various kinds, and on and on and on and on.

Each of these records tells the exact same story.

Some of the types of records are too incomplete to give you an entire global picture at each point in history, but between all of the records together, there's a great deal of overlap.

The percent of published climatologists who don't accept that we live in a warming world (~3%) is way less than the percent of Americans who think the moon landing was faked (6-22%) and the percent of Americans who think Elvis is alive (8-11%).
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storms are approaching or exceeding severe limits at the moment heading towards tampa
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Quoting PcolaDan:


Main Entry: snow
Pronunciation: \ˈsnō\


The white specks on a television screen resulting from weak reception.

Preferable over PcolaDan's definition!
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Quoting AwakeInMaryland:
Atmo & the other "aggies", perdues, etc. -- I respect many of you a lot -- BUT I do not understand why so many people who study or work in the scientific community keep using the outdated language Global Warming when everyone, even a layperson like myself, knows the correct language is Climate Change.

Semantics...I don't care what you or anyone else calls it. I foresee that it will be given a new, scarier, better for TV name soon, anyway. The public's attention span is as long as my dog's short term memory after I tell her to stay. The fear mongers know it, too.

I just do science, really, not linguistics.

You could call it Wobal Goreming, if you want. Doesn't matter to me a bit.

cc, however, is how one calls a C compiler to turn your attempts at C code writing into a usable program in Linux. So I shall not use cc or CC as short for climate change.
"AGW" is not easily confused with any other subject that I know of, though.
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Afternoon all! See Rick pulled a Gustav..
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24938
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:

OMG, that's the chicken, isn't it?
I am SO caught; now I can't even go back and correct it -- too too funny. Sorry, T-Dude, I will lurk in hall of shame for awhile.
Actually, once again I have to walk the annoying canine dustmops, in the darn rain, so I will be out awhile, but I will be very interested in catching up on responses when I return. I'll probably get an earful!


hahaha dont worry about it! just call us "boiler makers"
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rain coming for T.B. area
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Quoting tornadodude:


ahem, I believe it is "Purdues" not "perdues" :P just harassing you

OMG, that's the chicken, isn't it?
I am SO caught; now I can't even go back and correct it -- too too funny. Sorry, T-Dude, I will lurk in hall of shame for awhile.
Actually, once again I have to walk the annoying canine dustmops, in the darn rain, so I will be out awhile, but I will be very interested in catching up on responses when I return. I'll probably get an earful!
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Out of here for awhile. Take care all and remember my friends quote.
"Some people are like slinkies. They put a smile on your face when you push them down stairs."
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Quoting AwakeInMaryland:
Yawn (dogs barking loudly at postman shook me out of long "power" nap)
Thank goodness atmo and tornadodude have gotten together on Linux; it was very painful in here earlier today.
The weather is so gloomy I actually watched TWC on New Hampshire AND the Chesapeake Bay (ah, yearning for nicer days) AND the San Juan Islands in Washington State. I had no idea; they're so cool, those islands.

Atmo & the other "aggies", perdues, etc. -- I respect many of you a lot -- BUT I do not understand why so many people who study or work in the scientific community keep using the outdated language Global Warming when everyone, even a layperson like myself, knows the correct language is Climate Change.

Even those of us who have to read "Weather for Dummies" know it's about the possibility of increased erratic
weather, not the warmer or colder rather outdated theories.

Are you all just being silly on purpose with the GW thing, and I don't get the joke because I'm an idjut?


ahem, I believe it is "Purdues" not "perdues" :P just harassing you
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Yawn (dogs barking loudly at postman shook me out of long "power" nap)
Thank goodness atmo and tornadodude have gotten together on Linux; it was very painful in here earlier today.
The weather is so gloomy I actually watched TWC on New Hampshire AND the Chesapeake Bay (ah, yearning for nicer days) AND the San Juan Islands in Washington State. I had no idea; they're so cool, those islands.

Atmo & the other "aggies", perdues, etc. -- I respect many of you a lot -- BUT I do not understand why so many people who study or work in the scientific community keep using the outdated language Global Warming when everyone, even a layperson like myself, knows the correct language is Climate Change.

Even those of us who have to read "Weather for Dummies" know it's about the possibility of increased erratic
weather, not the warmer or colder rather outdated theories.

Are you all just being silly on purpose with the GW thing, and I don't get the joke because I'm an idjut?
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Quoting HurricaneNewbie:
Atmoaggie, I would take a picture of the raw computing power here but policy prohibits cameras in the data center. I have 38,000 sq ft of raised floor space that I am responsible for keeping cool. I leave a huge carbon foot print.


I'll bet you do...

Yeah, my 64 processors and the 256 we are getting next month (I think) aren't all that special in a lot of places...

That pic is old, though. We moved to a better facility for this work...entirely redundant everything in power, cooling, etc. (Raised floor, too!)

In Slidell, LA (north of NOLA, on the lake) and this place stayed fully functional after Katrina except for city water supply. 3 MW generator, fuel for 8 days on hand at all times, and enough battery power to run the entire building for 10 hours at a time. (you should see the UPS room...think battery power for 300,000 sq feet of mission critical technology-prolific consumption all distributed from that room to every circuit in the place. Really cool to see once, but I wouldn't want to be the one working on it.)
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339. xcool
btwntx08 yeah did you looking at model.yet.!
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Quoting pearlandaggie:
out for a while...may or may not be on later.

take it easy!


you too!
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out for a while...may or may not be on later.

take it easy!
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Atmoaggie, I would take a picture of the raw computing power here but policy prohibits cameras in the data center. I have 38,000 sq ft of raised floor space that I am responsible for keeping cool. I leave a huge carbon foot print.
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Quoting atmoaggie:

With the new Intel Nehalem processors and DDR3?
Getting one of those soon, as in the next couple of months.

3:1 speed up in what we do over processors from 2 years ago.


hmmm, not sure what it has, havent got to see much of it, I just stick to my desktop :P
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333. xcool
btwntx08 hihi
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Quoting tornadodude:


nice! we have a super computer that has 74 processors

With the new Intel Nehalem processors and DDR3?
Getting one of those soon, as in the next couple of months.

3:1 speed up in what we do over processors from 2 years ago.
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Quoting atmoaggie:


And here I am...and one of our Linux clusters (the 64 processor one). No pretty graphics and huge monitors here, just raw computational power.



nice! we have a super computer that has 74 processors
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Quoting tornadodude:
here are the other computers I work with (:


And here I am...and one of our Linux clusters (the 64 processor one). No pretty graphics and huge monitors here, just raw computational power.

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Quoting Orcasystems:


Naw.. I just want to see snow in Florida... everyone keeps saying they are to hot and muggy. When we see the word "cold front" in our weather forecast... it means... COLD. I bet one day of snow...and everyone would like the heat back :)

KOG is suppose to get a bit of snow this weekend :)

BTW, looking at pictures of a possible new Toy :)


I grew up in Satellite Beach. I did see icicles once while walking to school. That was in the late 60's.
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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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