This week we look at meteorology, the science of looking up in the air, making a guess from a multiple choice envelope, and telling us what to expect. Yeesh.
Meteorology is the study of the atmosphere. It goes back a long way, so far back that I would like to think witch doctors who predicted grim weather were the genesis for the modern-day science.
Either that or whoever invented the timeless, inaccurate and, therefore, apt phrase: “Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight. Red sky in morning, shepherd’s warning.”
Things have moved on significantly and, with the dawn of satellite, we’re far more accurately told what to expect nowadays. For example, the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) is the top dog over here, claiming it can predict weather patterns a couple of weeks in advance.
However, reputations are hard to shift and, therefore, it will take some time before people embrace weather men and women for anything other than suited guessers. True, not all weather presenters are meteorologists, but that’s what people think…
What they do: Through the help of computational algorithms, numerous reading apparatus on the ground and in the sky, and huge swathes of data to process, meteorologists look at weather patterns and establish where and when they will begin and end.
What they don’t do: Study meteors, sadly, or appear on certain Irish TV stations…
Educational requirements: Basically speaking, you need a degree in meteorology, maths, physics or atmospheric sciences. From there, MScs can help.
Here are a few meteorologist memes, jokes and videos which are all factually correct. Especially the cow pun.
Main image, via Shutterstock