At this time of the year, across Europe, eyes turn to the sky and the question on everyone’s mind is ‘What’s the

weather going to be like on our holiday’. With the warmest June WW having recently been reported then you

would think that  there are good odds for a great summer. No need to worry about he weather? But you would

be wrong. Our weather is becoming more extreme. In the UK we only recently come out of a cold and wet

winter and spring. There have been many instances of severe flooding across Europe. There has never

been a time when accurate weather forecasting has been more important. 


5th Aug 2015 006.JPG


However, holidaymakers have long accepted that they are at the mercy of the sun gods. When it comes to

booking holidays to destinations such as London, which remains Europe’s most visited city, tourists are

understandably always keen to check that they’re not in for a week of downpours, but as I write his, you

had better bring your sun cream.


Rain in London.jpg


Today’s weather forecasting builds on decades of numerical model development and the collaboration of

smart scientists and mathematicians across the globe. There is no guesswork in it . The models are

complex and require extreme technology to process the huge amount of observational data that floods

into the main forecast centres worldwide. Ground observations, upper air, satellite, shipping and aircraft

all contribute to the starting conditions from which the model runs, while the arrays that hold the forecast

data are getting ever finer detailed as compute and memory models advance. The output from the models

is highly time critical and is consumed by a wide variety of customers from air travel to retail.  



High Performance Computing organisations are continuously looking for technologies that enable them to

complete their calculations in shorter time and distribute the results to customers without delay. Flash

technologies have revolutionalised this process over previous generation technologies application

to a single second. This empowers the forecast teams to deliver crucial weather information in emergency



Finally, ‘Keep a Weather Eye Open’ = Remain alert for changes. Watch out for the Flash Flood!  For the business

and IT, Flash is biggest disruptor I have seen in the market for decades. Get it right and you will lead, get it wrong

and you will follow, at a fair distance. 



NetApp Flash PortFolio Links


Flash – respond faster to customers. Unlock the value of your data. 



Laurence James – On behalf of the NetApp Products and Solutions Team  

Laurence James

Laurence is responsible for driving market awareness for NetApp’s products across EMEA. His focus is on business growth and aligning NetApp’s offerings with customer and market needs.

Laurence works across all of NetApp’s products and has an in-depth understanding of diverse customer requirements to deliver value across the entire range of the product suite.

Working with a dedicated and experienced team, he now assists in developing and implementing campaigns that support the positioning of NetApp’s Cloud Infrastructure products.

Laurence has many years’ experience working with all aspects of Enterprise IT and held roles at Oracle, Sun Microsystems and StorageTek.

For nearly 20 years he was Principal IT Consultant at the UK Meteorological Office.

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