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Old 04-19-17, 08:57 AM   #1
RubeRad
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Rain Alerts?

So here in SoCal I have to deal with maybe only 5-10 rainy days/year. (Don't hate me ).

For a while I've been carrying my raingear with me all the time (ikea poncho, packable rain pants), because I can't get in the habit of checking the forecast every day. But I'm tired of all the space it takes up and they're always in the way.

So I got the idea I'd find a free service online that would monitor weather forecasts and send me an email 48hrs before any predicted rain.

A little googling, and all I could find was too extreme (severe weather alerts from the national weather service) or too often (email the forecast every single day).

All I want is to be able to configure something to send me maybe 20-30 emails/year, whenever there is rain forecast within 48 hours.

Anybody know of an online service like that?

EDIT: The Answer, thanks to JReade, is IFTTT (If This Then That), which has an amazingly flexible infrastructure for setting up automated actions as responses to detectable conditions, including "if it's raining tomorrow then send me an email" (although this is the only one that I have seen that is remotely useful for me).

Everybody else, feel free to tell me how wonderful your life is because you check the weather or get an automated forecast in your email every single damn day.

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Old 04-19-17, 09:21 AM   #2
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I can't help with finding a service to send you notices, but as a bike commuter I'm checking the weather pretty much every day. The only days I don't are when I've checked the day before and I know there's 0% chance of foul weather already. Weather Underground is pretty much permanently open on my web browser and it's just part of my morning routine to check it. Takes all of a few seconds.
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Old 04-19-17, 09:35 AM   #3
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I can't help with finding a service to send you notices, but as a bike commuter I'm checking the weather pretty much every day. The only days I don't are when I've checked the day before and I know there's 0% chance of foul weather already. Weather Underground is pretty much permanently open on my web browser and it's just part of my morning routine to check it. Takes all of a few seconds.
ditto. as a daily 4 season bike commuter in chicago, checking the weather forecast is the very first thing i do every single morning, even before i get out of bed.

the alarm on my phone goes off. i grab it to shut off the alarm, and then i immediately proceed to check the forecast and radar for the day. it's automatic.

i've never heard of any type of service that will send you an email if there's a chance of rain anytime in the next 48 hours.
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Old 04-19-17, 09:41 AM   #4
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Weather Underground has a more-detailed rain/snow forecast but I don't see a way to turn it into an alert.

https://www.wunderground.com/us/ca/g.../precipitation
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Old 04-19-17, 09:43 AM   #5
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Does anyone have an app that can warn me when I need to eat and pee? Yes I'm trolling a bit but why be so concerned for something that supposedly rarely happens in your area and I would assume is just a very minor inconvenience... unless you're made of cotton candy. Melting is a horrible way to go.

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Old 04-19-17, 09:52 AM   #6
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IFTTT is an app or service that lets you configure stuff, like "If I get an email from sender x, turn my lights on at home". I looked on the site, there are some that are pre-filled like "alert me if there is a high pollen count" and "get an email if there is snow expected tomorrow" so I imagine there is an option for "email me if there is rain past x % chance" or however you want to configure it.

Edit- yep there is.
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Old 04-19-17, 10:14 AM   #7
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Thank you JReade for answering my actual question! I don't have a smartphone so I can't use it as an app, but I see there's a Chrome extension that clones it, hopefully that will do the trick.

And no thanks to those of you who posted an 'answer' of 'just check the forecast every day'. I know that checking the forecast every day is a solution to my 'problem', and I also know that for me and my life, it is a solution that doesn't work. I don't watch the news, I don't use a smartphone, when I wake up the computer's not on and I don't want to spend the time to turn it on; I just roll out of bed into my biking clothes, grab underwear, socks, and shirt for work, hop on the bike and go.
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Old 04-19-17, 10:18 AM   #8
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Thank you JReade for answering my actual question! I don't have a smartphone so I can't use it as an app, but I see there's a Chrome extension that clones it, hopefully that will do the trick.

And no thanks to those of you who posted an 'answer' of 'just check the forecast every day'. I know that checking the forecast every day is a solution to my 'problem', and I also know that for me and my life, it is a solution that doesn't work. I don't watch the news, I don't use a smartphone, when I wake up the computer's not on and I don't want to spend the time to turn it on; I just roll out of bed into my biking clothes, grab underwear, socks, and shirt for work, hop on the bike and go.
I didn't realize that it had a chrome extension. Thanks! I just assumed you had a smart phone. Well, hope it works!
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Old 04-19-17, 10:26 AM   #9
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Actually it looks like ifttt.com can be used just via the website. There were already recipes/applets/whatever available for "if it will rain tomorrow, send me an email". So I set that up, and I won't know if it works until maybe November!

Kind of scary though, to hook up to the gmail 'service', it asks for permission to read/modify/delete your emails, labels, etc, even though the applet I applied should only need to send an email.
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Old 04-19-17, 10:26 AM   #10
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Here in Oregon, that would be around 250 alerts/year. Seriously, if I were you, I'd put a lightweight rain jacket (maybe a Showers Pass or the like) in a sock and toestrap it to my seatbag for the months where in might rain. Then you can just do your routine and you are covered if it does rain.

I'm a step behind you technology-wise. I have yet to have a smart phone or apps. I do make breakfast and boot the desktop but often don't make a note of the weather beyond looking outside and at the thermometer. (I am riding in bike clothes and keeping work clothes at work, so arriving wet doesn't matter.)

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Old 04-19-17, 10:32 AM   #11
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Here in Oregon, that would be around 250 alerts/year. Seriously, if I were you...
Well guess what, if you were me YOU'D LIVE IN CALIFORNIA! And if I were you, I'd live in not-california, and I'd check the f'in weather every f'in day. Maybe you should set up itfff with "if tomorrow is sunny, send me an email" so you'll know when you don't need to bring your rain gear.
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Old 04-19-17, 10:56 AM   #12
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I may have what you need. I have a friend in San Diego that sends me whiny texts whenever it rains - like it's some biblical plague. Send me your number and I will have him add you to his send list.

Anyhow, I check the Weather Underground app on my phone in the evening to figure out what the temp will be on my morning commute. This takes 15 seconds. If it looks like the 3 day forecast is not likely to vary, I won't check again for a few days (in SoCal, you could probably do this once a week). If rain is predicted, I check the Doppler radar map when I get up - this allows me to time the rain-free windows.
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Old 04-19-17, 11:08 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
So here in SoCal I have to deal with maybe only 5-10 rainy days/year. (Don't hate me ).

For a while I've been carrying my raingear with me all the time (ikea poncho, packable rain pants), because I can't get in the habit of checking the forecast every day. But I'm tired of all the space it takes up and they're always in the way.

So I got the idea I'd find a free service online that would monitor weather forecasts and send me an email 48hrs before any predicted rain.

A little googling, and all I could find was too extreme (severe weather alerts from the national weather service) or too often (email the forecast every single day).

All I want is to be able to configure something to send me maybe 20-30 emails/year, whenever there is rain forecast within 48 hours.

Anybody know of an online service like that?
Is rain even a big issue if it's 80 when it rains?
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Old 04-19-17, 11:22 AM   #14
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whoa.

OP I'm glad you found a solution for yourself.
As for all the replies from everyone and then the Re:Re: and then the Re:Re:Re: 's to come.....
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Old 04-19-17, 11:51 AM   #15
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ditto. as a daily 4 season bike commuter in chicago, checking the weather forecast is the very first thing i do every single morning, even before i get out of bed.

the alarm on my phone goes off. i grab it to shut off the alarm, and then i immediately proceed to check the forecast and radar for the day. it's automatic.

i've never heard of any type of service that will send you an email if there's a chance of rain anytime in the next 48 hours.
Double dittoes. On our Comcast cable service we have a channel (245) called Weatherscan that shows the current temp, wind speed and direction, and Doppler over about a fifty mile radius. So I can pretty precisely decide whether to take the beater bike or the pristine carbon fiber.

For more extended forecasts I use Weather.com for hourly forecasts over about two days, and five-day and 10-day forecasts. I find them to be pretty accurate when predicting good weather, but can be variable for rain. As noted, the immediate Doppler of Weatherscan or Weather.com will make the final decision, but at least I’m forewarned.
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Old 04-19-17, 12:01 PM   #16
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I use weather underground for forecasting. They have a free email service, so I get a one line forecast every morning. If it looks interesting, there's a link to the full forecast.
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Old 04-19-17, 12:48 PM   #17
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whoa.

OP I'm glad you found a solution for yourself.
As for all the replies from everyone and then the Re:Re: and then the Re:Re:Re: 's to come.....
I know, right? For now I'll have fun flaming, eventually I'll get over it.
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Old 04-19-17, 12:52 PM   #18
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Anyhow, I check the Weather Underground app on my phone in the evening to figure out what the temp will be on my morning commute. This takes 15 seconds.
Good for you. Do you want a sticker or a button? Guess what, I don't have (choose not to have) a smartphone. Guess what, I have computers all over the place, and they're all connected to the internet, it also takes me 15 seconds to open a tab and type "weather poway<enter>" and see what the forecast is. And guess what; I'VE TRIED THAT AND IT DOESN'T WORK FOR ME because I never remember to do it. Maybe I should set up a service that automatically sends me an email every day to remind me to check the weather.
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Old 04-19-17, 12:55 PM   #19
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I use weather underground for forecasting. They have a free email service, so I get a one line forecast every morning. If it looks interesting, there's a link to the full forecast.
FB, FB, not you too! I don't want an email every morning. (a) I found plenty of daily forecast email services, I said in the OP that a daily forecast email was "too often" (b) I don't check email before I ride (c) I don't want to have to turn on the computer every morning to check email before I ride (d) the same email every day I would quickly condition myself to ignore

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Old 04-19-17, 12:58 PM   #20
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Is rain even a big issue if it's 80 when it rains?
I'll allow it as a legitimate question.

Rain at 80deg is what happens in Florida, not California. In California usually there will be no rain at all between, say, June and October. Most of the rain is in the 'winter', Jan/Feb. Overnight temps can sometimes just barely dip below freezing, but that's only on a crystal clear night. CA rain is usually on days when the temp is in the 40s or 50s.
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Old 04-19-17, 01:09 PM   #21
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Don't know about you guys, but I'm sick of paying taxes to support the National Weather Service when they can't even schedule their storms worth a crap. Hope Trump will make them get it together or go away.
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Old 04-19-17, 01:11 PM   #22
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Added an EDIT to the OP...

Yeesh, I'm starting to understand how mtnbke feels when somebody asks about headset presses and everybody just says 'eh, just use a bolt and a stack of washers'
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Old 04-19-17, 01:15 PM   #23
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I'll allow it as a legitimate question.

Rain at 80deg is what happens in Florida, not California. In California usually there will be no rain at all between, say, June and October. Most of the rain is in the 'winter', Jan/Feb. Overnight temps can sometimes just barely dip below freezing, but that's only on a crystal clear night. CA rain is usually on days when the temp is in the 40s or 50s.
Thank you counselor
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Old 04-19-17, 01:20 PM   #24
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I believe that should be 'your honor'! All the rest of you, I hold you in contempt of my OP!
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Old 04-19-17, 01:27 PM   #25
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Everybody else, feel free to tell me how wonderful your life is because you check the weather or get an automated forecast in your email every single damn day.
You know one thing that's wonderful about living in SoCal? You don't have to check the weather every single damn day!

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