Friday, December 18, 2009

Well, I was right about one thing

Just received a nice mail from the Met Office in response to my queries about the data showing that I was right about one thing: there is something odd about the values in Australasia (or as they say, Oceania).

I had written to them saying:

I've noticed that there seems to be a big difference between the 'Normals' given in many of the datafiles for Australisia and the actual normal values calculated from the 1961-1990 data. See for example, this blog of entry of mine about one of them:

Do you know of any issues with these values?

Tonight they have replied:

First off, thank you for bringing this to our attention. We have undertaken further investigation upon the full dataset and confirmed this. The error affects <1% of the network and is primarily in Oceania. It arises because normals were calculated outside of the update cycle and the normals for these stations were not updated when extra data were added in the normals period as CRUTEM3 was being finalised for publication.

We intend to add this information to our online Q and A for the data and we would like to credit you with pointing out the error. Would you be happy to be mentioned in this way?

Wow. I shall now pat myself on the back, drink a little toast to Perl and openness in science, and go to bed.

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