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26 April 2003
Thursday morning, I fly to Oklahoma City. Unlike last
year, I will not have an extra day to wonder around the Oklahoma City area.I
probably should cancel my rental car reservation. Even last week, the
10-day forecast showed the first and second of May to be promising chase
days. And frankly, last time I went to go look for books at the University
of Oklahoma bookstores, they didn't have what I needed. So I might
be wasting a trip, the gas, and the cost of a rental car anyways. Besides,
the beginning of May as a very active time for severe weather, as anybody
who was in Oklahoma City on May 3, 1999 would . On that day,
there were over 50 tornadoes in the Oklahoma City area, including the very
large F5 tornado that plowed through the suburb of Moore. |
This year's chase runs from May 1 through May 12. The pattern this year looks even more promising than last year's dismal pattern. Nonetheless last year, Bill Reid, and Dean Cosgrove put us on a spectacular set a storm south of Amarillo that eventually yielded the tornado at Happy. Today probably the biggest preparation, I made for the trip was getting Dragon Naturally Speaking software for my laptop. Unlike earlier renditions of speech recognition software, this version seems to be fairly accurate and requires very little manual correction on my part.
I am looking forward to the technology upgrades to the Tempest Tours van. Bill and Dean did fine with last year's technology, but having wireless Internet connectivity on the road should prove invaluable . Nowcasting is well and good, however, it is always a good thing to make your own interpretation of the data that you find on the net.
Initially I was torn between whether to take the Toshiba 4340 or three XP based laptop with me on the trip. After a little bit of thought. The extra storage capacity on the 4340, the better assortment of software,and the fact that I have Dragon Naturally Speaking already installed on this machine makes me lean toward taking the 4340 with me. Perhaps I will relax about it a little bit if I make a backup of all of the files on this machine. it is highly unlikely that the laptop will be lost or damaged during the tour, however. It would be good to be safe versus sorry.
The issue on my mind is really the software. I plan to get a new laptop next year anyhow.
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