Challenges with the previous version
The installation of previous versions of Climsoft was not easy to many Climsoft users due to indirect connection to the database, many Climsoft users experienced difficulties in setting up the connection to the MySQL back-end through ODBC. Previous versions of Climsoft were using MS Access to manage data stored in MySQL back-end database as well as user access control; the security features in MS Access were not very stringent. Users could easily gain access to the database through the back door, and there were issues that often developed with the security management system of MS Access that resulted in some users failing to log into the Climsoft system even with the correct username and password. The quality of graphical output (graphs, charts, plots etc...) and facility to manage paper archive were among the challenge in previous versions.
Climsoft version 4 brings the solutions to the issues of installation and system security since the installation of Climsoft V4 is now much easier largely because it has removed dependency to Microsoft Access by providing direct connection to the database, security is now managed efficiently at database level. User access privileges are now configured and controlled to the finest detail.
Management of images of paper records (paper archives) in support of Data Rescue was made possible in Climsoft version 4 (Images of paper records can be stored and retrieved on the fly to facilitate immediate checking of key in data against the handwritten observation paper records).
Capabilities of Climsoft Version 4 Climate Data Management System (CDMS) that make it suitable for use in many National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHS) are:
Climsoft is a free climate Data Management System (CDMS) built on the freely available open source tools such as Visual Studio, MySQL/MARIADB making it less costly to implement and maintain. After the initial training, users are able to continuously support Climsoft operations on their own;
Climsoft can be implemented in a standalone computer at the observatory as well as in the server at the centralized database at the NMHS headquarters. It therefore allows connectivity between the observatories and the remote database server thereby facilitating data digitization right from the source. It works very well in a multi-user environment allowing many users to access the centralized climate database concurrently for different operations;
3. User Management, Operations Monitoring and Quality of Data
Secure security access levels is guaranteed. It is easy to monitor data entered by different users, set a target for users to achieve and evaluate user work performance through Climsoft. It has got an elaborate key entry and post Key entry Quality Control (QC) functions;
4. Ingestion of data from Automatic Weather Station (AWS)
Climsoft automatically ingests data from Automatic Weather Stations (AWSs) on real time basis thereby making those observations to be available for weather forecasting purposes;
5. Data files Import and Export
Data files of different formats can be easily imported into Climsoft. It can exports data in formats ready for use by many climate applications that include RCLIMDEX, CPT, GEOCLIM, INSTAT, ENACTS, etc.;
6. Message Encoding and Forwarding to Global Telecommunication System (GTS)
Climsoft encodes observations into weather messages according the WMO standards of Table Driven Code Forms (TDCF). It is capable of forwarding those encoded messages to the WMO GTS network;
7. Management of images of paper records (paper archives) in support of Data Rescue (DARE)
Images of paper records can be stores and retrieved on the fly to facilitate immediate checking of key in data against the handwritten observation paper records;
8. Climate Products
Climsoft produces the standard WMO climate products from the archived and quality controlled data. The data inventory function is good and advanced (Ability to inventory available and missing data in both spreadsheet and graphical format);
9. Linkage to R - Instat Climate Analysis Tool
Climsoft interrogate very well with R - Instat to produce variety of climate summaries and reports (including wind rose, time series plots, trend analysis graphs, calculations of the start/ends of rain, length of the season, spell length (dry/wet), Data Inventory graphs, spatial distribution maps, Examine trend and quantify the evidence of climate change (global warming), rainfall variability, etc.);
10. Technical Support and Software Maintenance
It is very easy and cheaper to get technical support, software maintenance and training.
Mr.Marcellin HABIMANA | Climsoft Project Coordinator | World Meteorological Organization, Eastern and Southern Africa, Dagoretti Corner, Ngong Road | P O Box 1395 - 00606 Nairobi, KENYA | E-mail: email@example.com |Skype: mhabimana | Tel:+250788740275/ +245716980451 | website:www.wmo.int