March 23, 2013
Facebook Adds Weather Information To Events
redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online
Facebook, the world´s largest social network, is moving one step closer to total Internet domination with the announcement they will be adding weather forecasts to events and public place pages.
According to PCMag´s Stephanie Mlot, the new feature comes courtesy of the folks at Weather Underground and will allow users to include general weather information to events that have a designated location and occur within 10 days from the time of creation. The feature will be available both on the Web-based and mobile versions of the website, she added.
Only the basic forecast and the estimated high and low temperatures will be directly viewable on the event pages, but users can click on the specified area to visit the Weather Underground website for more detailed information, explained Brittany Darwell of Inside Facebook.
Additionally, the individual creating the event will also be able to view the information during the set-up process, which could help them avoid scheduling an outdoor event such as a company picnic on a potentially rainy day. The feature will not be available immediately, but Facebook officials told Justin Lafferty of AllFacebook the new feature was expected to roll out starting on Thursday.
“The positive here is that Facebook is carefully surfacing this information in places on the site that make sense for users, rather than cramming it all over the place so that it just feels like clutter. For example, seeing the weather on an event page is fine, but it´s not something I want to see on my news feed,” TechCrunch´s Drew Olanoff said of the new feature.
“By providing this information, it´s just one less step you have to make when you´re making decisions on where to go,” he added. “The addition of events is great for the guests, but when you´re setting up an event, you´ll also see the weather prediction for that day, which can help you form your description, suggesting that people bring a sweatshirt, perhaps. If the event is within the next 10 days, you´ll see a 10-day forecast:”
The social media website will also begin displaying current weather conditions on pages belonging to public parks and cities, provided they do not have an administrator, Darwell said.
Those pages currently contain information culled from Wikipedia and, in some cases, local search features. With the addition of updated climate data, “these pages have more information that could make them a useful destination for users looking for more information about a place,” the Inside Facebook writer added.
In a statement, Facebook representatives told Lafferty that Weather Underground´s localized weather stations will allow the social network “to provide results tailored to the particular location within cities (not just the city´s overall weather). This is important for places like San Francisco, where the climate can vary dramatically from block to block. Current conditions will also be shown on places pages like parks, cities, and neighborhoods.”