Adding Weather Forecasts to Your Calendar

Planning on traveling across the country or around the world? Not sure what the weather will be like when you arrive? Add a five day weather forecast to your calendar and get updates as the weather changes.
Written by: Shauna McGee Kinney, Productivity Consulting

There are times that you are planning a trip across the country or around the world and need to be ready for the weather at your destination. One of the nice features that has come from the web is the ability to subscribe to data, like weather forecasts, and to get updates regularly.

In this example, I am living in Perth - Australia and expect guests from Long Beach / Los Angeles - California. I want my guests to be ready for our weather and I want to plan to bring extra umbrellas to the Perth airport if it’s raining when they arrive.

What You Need



  • Apple iCal
  • Safari or FireFox
  • An Internet Connection

Let’s start with the finished product and then I will explain how to get the weather forecasts into an Apple iCal calendar. The subscription process described here can be used with Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar with a few different steps. In this story, I only show iCal. Please contact me if you’d like the steps for Outlook or Google Calendar.

I can see the weekly weather forecast for both Long Beach (Los Angeles) and Perth in my monthly, weekly and daily view.

Here’s how the weather looks in my weekly iCal view.

icalweather-01


By double-clicking on one of the weather forecasts, I can see a little more detail about rain forecasted in Perth on Wednesday.

icalweather-02

How to Add Weather Forecasts



Start at the Weather Underground website and find a major city’s forecast.

http://www.wunderground.com/

Type the name of the major city into the search box. Next, pick the city from the list. In this example, I am picking Perth, Australia.

icalweather-03

In the center of the window, find the 5 day forecast for that city. Look at the top-right corner of the 5 day forecast for a small, green “
ICAL” button.

icalweather-04

Careful!
CONTROL-click (right-click) on the ICAL button to get a menu.

Do NOT use a regular click.

icalweather-05

Choose “
Copy Link” in Safari. (“Copy Link Location” in Firefox)

The reason you copy the link and do not click the link is you want to make a subscription from your calendar to the updated weather. If you simply click on the link, you get a static invitation to that day’s weather without the ability to refresh the weather forecast.

Return to your iCal program.

From the menu, select
Calendar > Subscribe ...

icalweather-06

Use Edit > Paste or APPLE + V (keyboard shortcut) to paste the URL

icalweather-08

Here’s a hint - the default might come out with metric units. Change the word “metric” to the word “both” and help yourself get used to the overseas weather measurements!

icalweather-07

Click the
Subscribe button

Now you will see the Perth - Australia weather in your subscription list and on your calendar.

icalweather-09

Hey, did you notice that Anton share’s his calendar with me and it’s unchecked? You can hide items you don’t need at that moment or show items you want by turning the check box on and off.

Repeat the steps to add more cities. Cities like Long Beach in Los Angeles have relatively mild weather changes, but cities like Oklahoma City or Chicago can have quite dramatic weather changes depending on the season. You can temporarily add a city, say for a trade show, and simply delete it after you are done with your trip.

How to Update the Weather Forecast


You can manually pick up the most recent weather forecast by clicking on the city in your subscriptions

Next go to the iCal menu and select
Calendar > Refresh, or use the keyboard shortcut APPLE + R

icalweather-10

If you want the weather forecast to automatically update, go to Subscriptions and click on the city

From the iCal menu select
Edit > Get Info or the keyboard shortcut APPLE + I

You can change the color of the weather item and at the bottom of the window, you can Auto-Refresh often or rarely.

Hint: If you have a slow internet connection or travel with your computer, you might want to turn the Auto-Refresh off, since this will slow down your start up and internet activity.

icalweather-11

In summary, getting useful information like weather and calendar “mashed” together is easier than it has ever been before. For business travelers or the occasional vacationer the weather tool can make planning and getting around a lot more comfortable.

OK, Anton, what’s the weather like at Dartmouth?
0 Comments