Meteorological Applications Developers…Do you exist?

09   May ,  2012 | 12
comments

As I mentioned in my previous post, “Is Meteorology turning into Computer Science”…weather companies are on the look out for meteorological developers.   That’s where the hiring from weather companies seems to be focused these days.   If you are a degreed meteorologist who can code in multiple programming languages…companies want to talk to you ASAP.   If you are good, they are ready to throw down some serious cash!

One of my buddies at Earth Sat Corporation is hiring for two positions.   The first is for a Web Applications Developer and the second is for a Meteorological Applications Developer.   These positions will create new weather analysis products and systems and have the chance to interact with forecasters on a day to day basis.  Might be a great way to get your foot in the door into a large weather company.   EarthSat is also a leader in the energy weather business…and it’s a great way to meet a lot of their energy trading clients too.

Folks, there are many other companies I know trying to fill these types of roles.   I’ll be happy to help as best I can.   Email me (or respond in the comments section below) and I’ll hook you up directly with the hiring managers.  I’m always an advocate to push for weather companies to hire talented meteorologists….even if they are for developer positions.

Let me know if you are interested?! (Photo credit: Bevan Colless)

Posted by AJ on May 9, 2012

  • Jon Flatley

    Can you tell me what skills i need to develop for these sorts of positions? You can respond here or at jonflatley@yahoo.com

    Thanks!

    • Anonymous

      Hi Jon…I would begin by taking programming classes. Bottom line, you need to be able to program in various languages and be able to analyze and disseminate large data sets. Then after you learn some of the programming…try applying your skills to a real world weather application. Perhaps you can create something new and cool that could be utilized in the commercial weather space. This way you have code samples to show prospective employers.

      Hope that answers your question. If anyone else has advice and tips for Jon…feel free to post.

      • Jon Flatley

        Okay – thanks. I do have some programming experience with scripting, perl, fortran, and vba. I’m rusty however, and don’t have much opportunity to practice in my current situation (work full-time as an underwriter at an insurance company). I feel it’s a ‘catch-22′. To get better you need to be in a developer type job. To get a developer type job you need to get better. Anyway, will see if any others have some comments for me.

        • Johnny Lin

          Hi Jon and AJ! I’m the Chair of the AMS Python Symposium, and let me also suggest attending our 3rd symposium at the Annual Meeting in Austin in January 2013. While it’s Python specific, you’ll find the talks will give you ideas of different things you can do with languages today that just weren’t possible (or were very difficult to do) only 10 years ago. There’s also a group of us who are trying to grow the Python community in the atmospheric and oceanic sciences, and we have a blog with resources and a mailing list (see pyaos.johnny-lin.com for details) that you might find useful.

  • Johnny Weber

    I can’t believe I ran into your website. This is precisely the area of software engineering that I am interested in. I even worked for NOAA on a grant to study data compression of signals from Aqua’s AIRS instrument way back in 2005. You can check out some of that work here:

    http://www.ee.columbia.edu/~johnny/science/compression/index.html

    I mostly used Matlab since we were only prototyping software for use in GOES-R, and I’ve been away for a few years because I decided to get myself a Computer Science degree at Columbia. But I would love to hear about opportunities now that I’ve graduated!

  • JustinLynnReid

    Hey AJ, I have real world computer programming/development experience along with my atmospheric science degree and this is the kind of path in meteorology that I would really like to pursue. My email is jlreid@unca.edu.

    • JustinLynnReid

      Scratch this, I have a major interview in the next two weeks :) Yay! I guess this sort of proves AJ’s point.

      • freshAJ

        Nice job Justin! Yes you are definitely in demand :)

  • encouraged

    I have CS bachelor’s degree and am finishing a PhD in Atmospheric Sciences. I miss programming beyond matlab plotting and model hacking and once I finish would love to get a job like this, combining CS and atmos. Writing research papers can be fun, but it isn’t really my strength and I don’t want to stay in academia. I hope you are right and I just haven’t looked hard enough, because I am not seeing a demand for this, at least not in my geographic location (moving isn’t really an option right now, though perhaps in our small field moving is necessary). I did a phone interview for a company that potentially fits the category you describe, but they were concerned I don’t have experience as a developer in a production environment. They said their developers don’t really need to understand the physics behind the code. I hope there are companies out there that value an understanding of atmospheric science but let me program to my heart’s content! Perhaps I need to attend the next AMS conference to learn about all these companies that want CS/met people. Thanks for an interesting blog post, it gives me hope!

    • freshAJ

      Hey encouraged….what part of the country do you live in? Given this info, I’ll see what companies I know out there of which are hiring and send them your way.

      Thanks,

      AJ

      • encouraged

        Hey, that is really nice of you! I live in Seattle, so lots of tech and software development out here, but for some reason not a lot of met/atmos opportunities. UW spews out tons of atmos talented people, and it seems most of them either move away or work in a different field when they finish. Something will work out, and I can always do what you are supposed to do with a graduate degree and find a postdoc! Because postdocs as it turns out often have a heavy modelling component, which benefits from CS experience. Though usually CS classes don’t have you digging around in Fortran… So even grad programs and the academic track like people who can program! All the more reason to encourage your readers to get some CS experience.

  • Mike-romberg

    Anything interesting in the Denver area? I have 16 years experience developing AWIPS which as you probably know is used at all of the NWS weather forecast officers.