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What is WxCoder?

WxCoder is a web-based data entry system that allows climate observers in the NOAA’s National Weather Service Cooperative Network program to enter daily observations for near real-time reporting and for official entry into NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). This is done through the use of an internet-ready computer with web browser capability (e.g., Netscape, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Apple Safari, Firefox, etc.). The web browser displays the entry system on the computer screen and allows you to enter your observations.

The WxCoder system is national in scope and available to everyone in the Cooperative Network. It functions in parallel with IV-ROCS, the telephone entry system for Cooperative observers. With WxCoder, the volunteer observer can enter weather observations, view and edit old observations, graph daily climate trends, and officially submit observations into the NOAA archive at NCDC.

I forgot my access code

That's OK. We can help you reset it. Visit the Forgot Access Code page and enter your username. We'll send you an email to your address on record containing a new, randomly-generated password which you can use to sign in to WxCoder. Once you are signed in, visit My Information to change your access code to something you can remember.

I don't have a username

Contact your supervising WFO. They can setup a new account or look up your username if you already have an account.

How do I change my access code?

To change your access code for WxCoder:

  1. Sign in at using your current access code.
  2. Under the WxCoder Menu on the left, click on My Information.
  3. Towards the bottom of the form, there are fields for a New Access Code and Confirm Access Code. Enter a new access code in both of these fields.
  4. Click the Save button. You should be redirected to the home page with a message stating your information has been updated.
  5. You must now use your new access code to sign in.

Why is Javascript required?

WxCoder uses Javascript to control the behavior of some pages in order to make them more interactive for users.
Help me enable Javascript

When do I access WxCoder?

While you may access WxCoder by internet through your local computer at anytime, it is preferable to enter your observations as soon as possible after taking them. This will ensure that your observations achieve the greatest utility by virtue of timeliness. Immediate entry also helps you provide the information in an accurate and insightful manner.

What kinds of quality assurance are performed on the observations as I enter them?

Integral to the WxCoder web interface, a series of basic internal consistency checks are immediately applied to data entries. In the event of an entry problem, the observer will be provided with an efficient and immediate opportunity to either re-enter or confirm their entry before the data is transmitted. Assuring efficiency for the observer must be balanced with the opportunity to address data errors to the maximum extent possible at the point of entry for the observation.

Basic quality assurance includes (but is not limited to) the following:

  • Gross limits checks (values cannot exceed physical limits);
  • Temperature consistency checks (e.g., maximum temperature cannot be less than minimum temperature for the same observing period, etc.);
  • Precipitation consistency checks (e.g., precipitation values cannot be negative);
  • Winter precipitation consistency checks (e.g., if snowfall exceeds three inches, snow depth must increase, etc.)

See QC Listing for a list of features in WxCoder.

What does "QC threshold exceeded" mean?

WxCoder maintains a set of "soft" limits for temperature data for each station. When an observer enters a value that exceeds this limit, they are required to provide an extra confirmation before the value is accepted. When a value is confirmed, the observer's NWS field office will be notified by e-mail. This notification is of value to NWS by bringing to their attention the possibility of extreme events occurring or the possibility of incorrect values being reported.

NWS field office admins can override the threshold values by visit the QC Thresholds link in the admin area.

Do I still record my observations as usual and mail them in to the National Weather Service?

No. You have the ability to electronically certify your observations at the end of the month for official submission to NWS and NCDC. Once a station has been officially converted to Paperless Status at NCDC and appears on the Region's WxCoder3 Station List (which is updated every month and sent to each region), paper forms should no longer be submitted. NWS Form B-91 (Record of River and Climatological Observations) is digitally available through WxCoder. You are welcome to print this form out for your use throughout the month.

The benefits of electronic submission are numerous, and include ease of use, timeliness, and quality assurance and control feedback. Be on the lookout for the announcement of when you can stop sending in paper forms.

TIP: If someone takes observations for you in your absence, they can be recorded on a printed B-91 form to be entered into WxCoder by you when you return.

How do I look at my data?

WxCoder has a Browse previous observations section, which allows observers to view their previous observations using a clickable calendar.

How can I get help?

You supervising NWS Weather Forecast Office will be happy to help you. You can send a message to the office in WxCoder by clicking on the e-mail address under Contact NWS.

I'm a WFO, how do I associate users to sites?

To associate a user to a site (or multiple sites), go to the Field Office Admin area after signing in.

On the left there are links to different sections. Click on Users and then click on a username from the list.

Scroll down to the box that says "Site(s)" and under that there is a link to select from list. Clicking on that will popup a new window. In the new window, click the checkbox next to the sites you wish to associate the user with. Click the Update and close link.

Click Submit at the bottom of the page. The list of associated sites will appear in the My Observations area when the user signs in.

I'm a WFO, how do I correct an observation.

First, make sure your username is associated with the site whose observation needs correcting. See how do I associate users to sites for help.

In the My Observations area, select the site from the dropdown list and click Go. Click Browse previous observations and find the day of the observation that needs correcting. Click on the day to view the observation and then click on the link Add correction from the left-hand side. Make the necessary corrections, click Submit, and confirm the observation.

It should be noted that a B-91 is only an output format for legacy purposes. All corrections should be done in WxCoder and not solely on a B-91. Any B-91 generated after a correction has been made will reflect the corrected data.

I'm a WFO, can I change an observer's access code?

Yes, a new access code for the observer can be set by taking the following steps:

  1. Go to "Field Office Admin" area after signing in to WxCoder with an admin account
  2. Click on the "Users" link on the left
  3. Click on the username for the observer who's access code will be changed
  4. Scroll down the page to where it says "Access Code" and "Confirm Access Code" and put the new access code in each box
  5. Scroll to the bottom and click the "Submit" button
  6. Supply the user with their new access code

I'm a WFO, how do I delete a user?

At this time, please just use the "disable" link. This will deny access to that user at login. If you have users you would like to permanently remove, let us know the usernames and we can look and see if they are tied to any data. If they are not, we can remove them for you.

Why aren't there times on the B-91?

We can't put the temp and precip times on the form because we don't have that metadata from CSSA. We could guess, but have decided to leave it blank so that it can be hand-written if needed.

Who's behind all this?

WxCoder III was developed at the Western Regional Climate Center in cooperation with the National Weather Service and the National Climatic Data Center. It is hosted by the Regional Climate Centers.