Earlier this afternoon, Hurricane Ike became Tropical Storm Ike, after nine days as a hurricane. The downgrade didn’t change the possibility of more damage — or the continued wall-to-wall coverage on the cablers.
The New York Times’ Brian Stelter describes the technology changes that have come with weather coverage, comparing what is used today with what was first used by an up-and-coming Dan Rather in 1961 — as he reported from Galveston, TX.
“Forty-seven years later, using technology that Mr. Rather couldn’t have imagined during Carla, TV networks demonstrated the dangers associated with Hurricane Ike using a cornucopia of maps and graphics,” writes Stelter.
He also describes the method employed by FNC’s Shepard Smith last night, as the anchor used a “life-size” TV screen and Google Maps to, “zoom in on specific spots as he interviewed Fox correspondents and small-town mayors.”
What Smith did last night with the Google map…
…looks similar to what CNN’s Jaqui Jeras has been doing this afternoon on the “Magic Wall” (“Weather Wall”?):