Tech Allows Meteorologist to Forecast Midwest Weather From California Garage

By Kevin Eck Comment

Fox KMIR

Meteorologist Geoff Fox forecasts the weather in Nebraska without leaving his Southern California garage.

“That’s what I do,” Fox told TVSpy. “When it comes to weather, the window is overvalued as a forecast tool.” Of course, the window he’s talking about is the one you look out of to see what it’s like outside.

Fox is a veteran of local TV. He’s worked at WTNH and WTIC Hartford, Conn., and, most recently, at KMIR in Palm Springs, Calif., and is now mastering the art of the hyper-local broadcast with his forecasts for News Channel Nebraska, a string of stations serving small towns in the Cornhusker State.

Fox is able to be a stay-at-home forecaster through the wonders of NewTek’s TriCaster which allows him to record his forecasts in his garage and stream them out to the stations. NewTek describes the TriCaster as a “fully integrated, turnkey production system.”

We asked him about the TriCaster and what it’s like to forecast for an area so far away.

TVSpy: Can you talk about programming the TriCaster?

Fox: As with most things done on a regular basis there is a format for my weather casts. They start with an animated intro/sounder and end at the forecast pages. Maps are in the middle. The maps change with each weather cast.
I run the entire show on the TriCaster using macros. That means I am my own director. I cue each element with a SHOUT controller. TriCaster’s macro language allows you to replicate the keystrokes a live director would follow. I segregate the changeable elements from the static ones. That makes it very easy for me to modify shows to match weather conditions. The animation and forecast pages remain unaffected while I switch maps in and out.

TVSpy: Is it weird for you to forecast weather for a station thousands of miles away?

Fox: No, it’s not. I expect Nebraska’s weather will be more active than Palm Springs and sometimes more harsh than Connecticut, but I’m using the same guidance in the same way to reach a forecast decision. And, the amount of weather data available today on a real time basis is mind boggling. I like what I do very much. I like it even better when my forecast is right. No one has to motivate me. Getting it right is part of the fun. I also have a useful skill, probably common in meteorologists. After so many years of watching weather intently, I know what most temperature/dew point/wind combinations feel like. That helps me explain the weather, which is so much more than numbers.

Here’s a shot of what he calls “the coolest” garage, ever.

fox studio

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