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Digital Atmosphere V0.40 (test) released
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Author:  Tim Vasquez [ Thu Dec 04, 2003 6:07 am ]
Post subject:  Digital Atmosphere V0.40 (test) released

A new Digital Atmosphere test version patch has been released:

IMPORTANT: Contouring will be more unreliable in this version.

IMPORTANT: The Internal weather data storage format is NOT compatible with previous versions. The record structure has been changed. This means that you MUST import new data before using this version of Digital Atmosphere or you will get a file error. Importing new data automatically rebuilds the internal data storage structure.


    * Adds Station Name as a plottable parameter (may be plotted in Station Plot settings under NAME). Only the first ten characters can be used. Edit DIGATMOS.STN and do File > Recompile Tables if you need to edit how a station's name looks.
    * Station table limit increased from 15,000 to 20,000 stations.
    * Changed image copy (Ctrl-C) to (Alt-Ctrl-C) to allow scripting edit box to use Ctrl-C.
    * Fixed import bug in which rawinsonde values with height but no T/Td/Wind were ignored. This was inhibiting import of subsurface values (e.g. 1000 mb).
    * Allows a new 60 day evaluation.
    * Adds the following new files: digatmos.mnu .
    * Adds a sophisticated scripting system, described below. Knowledge of the scripting is optional but greatly facilitates use of the program. Before testers begin spending a lot of time writing and playing with scripts, I want to point out that this scripting is intended to be a feature (and selling point) for the Professional version only. The Standard version will have this functionality hardcoded into the software using predefined scripts. I know this is not welcome news for the experimenters here, but Digital Atmosphere pays for my groceries and bills, and there has been a need for me to provide a true Professional DA version with "premium" capabilities.

New scripting system
A script (at this time) is made up of a group of commands on one line. There are two ways of executing a script:
(1) On the command line (on the Scripting toolbar). Though a message says that the scripting is inoperative, the OLD scripting is actually inoperative. The new format described here will work.
(2) In the DIGATMOS.MNU file, which is used to build the Analysis dropdown menu. This may be edited by hand. The pipe, |, symbol is used to separate the title from the script form and may be placed anywhere between the two providing it is padded with spaces only.

A line of script code follows the strict order:

(1) The script is read from RIGHT TO LEFT, so that any optional setup is done (such as setting the level), then defining the field to be worked on (such as temperature), then transforming (such as converting m/s to kts), then producing output (such as setting a contour interval and then displaying contours. Deviation from this form may cause unpredictable results.

(2) Users must be vigilant as to whether a scalar or vector field is being processed. For example, CONT WIND will result in a nonsensical output, because wind cannot be contoured (you can streamline it, but that command hasn't been provided yet). To view wind speed, you will need to extract a magnitude by using CONT WSPD (contour windspeed) or using a vector-to-magnitude function (which has not been provided yet).

(3) The active level is always taken from the Active Level setting on the toolbar. It can be overridden using a Setup command. The same is true for data Time settings.

(4) Multiple fields are handled by using the output form to write a field to a slot, such as STOR=5 to store the result in slot 5. Various transformations which depend on a field number, such as SDIF (scalar difference), are supplied with two field slots with which to read.

(5) Commands can be strung together to produce multiple fields. Currently there is a limit of 255 characters to a script command.

(6) Suggestions for transformation commands, output commands, operators, and so forth are greatly welcomed at this time. Much more is planned; this is only a start! For an idea of what is possible see the PCGRIDDS documentation at

(7) Scripts are not case-sensitive.


Explanation: Take the sea level pressure field. Set the contour interval to 4. Now contour it. Note that the color is not set, so the result color is unpredictable. Also the level is not set, so if the current height setting is 500 mb, an invalid field will result.

Explanation: Take the wind speed field (which will be in m/s). Convert it to knots. Now view it as a numerical grid.

Explanation: Take the 500 mb height field. Store it in slot 1. Take the 1000 mb height field. Store it in slot 2. Compute a difference between field 1 and 2. Now set the pen color to 200,0,0 (light red, i.e. red=200,green=0,blue=0. Set lines to dashed, and set a contour interval of 60. Now contour the result. This produces the 1000-500 mb thickness.

For other examples please open the DIGATMOS.MNU file and study the examples provided. They drive the Analysis dropdown menu.



HSFC Set level to surface
H000, H925, H850, H700, H500, H400, H300, H250, H200, H150, H100
Set level to a pressure surface


TEMP Temperature (deg C)
THTA Theta, or potential temperature (deg K)
DWPT Dewpoint (deg C)
RELH Relative humidity (%)
BULB Wet bulb temperature (deg C)
MIXR Mixing ratio (g/kg)
HGHT Geopotential height (m)
THTE Theta-e, or equivalent potential temperature (deg K)
PTEN Reported pressure tendency
WCHL Wind chill (deg F)
HIDX Heat index (deg F)
HUMX Humidex (deg C)
WSPD Wind, speed (m/s)
WIND Wind, vector (m/s) (referenced to true north)
WDRC Wind, direction (deg)
UGRD Wind, west-to-east component (m/s) (referenced to true north)
VGRD Wind, south-to-north component (m/s) (referenced to true north)
SLPR Sea level pressure (QFF) (mb)
ALST Altimeter setting (QNH) (in Hg)
PRES Pressure (mb) (used for upper-level heights)
LATT Latitude (deg)
LONG Longitude (deg)
ELEV Elevation (m)
TSEA Temperature, sea-surface (deg C)
WSWP Wave period (sec)
WSWH Wave height (m)
WWWP Wind wave period (sec)
WWWH Wind wave height (m)
WLP1 Sea swell period 1 (sec)
WLP2 Sea swell period 2 (sec)
WLH1 Sea swell height 1 (m)
WLH2 Sea swell height 2 (m)
WLD1 Sea swell direction 1 (screen relative)
WLD2 Sea swell direction 2 (screen relative)


VKNT m/s to kt
VMPH m/s to mph
VKMH m/s to km/h
DEGF deg C to deg F
SMTH Apply Haltiner smoother
SMTP=[number] Allow this number of smoothing passes (default 1)
SMTC=[number] Set smoothing coefficient (0 to 1 only) (default 0.5)


COLOR=r,g,b Set draw color to color r=red,g=green,b=blue (each is 0-255)
STOR=n Store field in slot n (1-9)

CONT Contour (defaults to contour interval of 1)
CINT=[number] Contour interval (must be an nonzero positive number)
GRTN=[number] Contours or fills greater than this number
LSTN=[number] Contours or fills less than this number
EQUA=[number] Plot a contour equal to this number
LINE=[number] Set line width (must be nonzero positive integer)
FILL Fill using fill color
SOLD Plot contours as solid line
DASH Plot contours as dashes
DOTS Plot contours as dots
DADO Plot contours as dash-dot
DADD Plot contours as dash-dot-dot
FILL Perform a flood fill
GRTN=[number] Contours or fills greater than this number
LSTN=[number] Contours or fills less than this number
FILS=[number] Set fillstyle to one of the following:
0 Solid (default)
1 Cross
2 Diagonal cross
3 Diagonal 1
4 Diagonal 2
5 Horizontal stripes
6 Vertical stripes
DATA Data grid values

BARB Wind barbs (m/s)
BKNT Wind barbs (m/s shown as kt)
BMPH Wind barbs (m/s shown as mph)
BKMH Wind barbs (m/s shown as km/h)[url][/url]

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