Collaborative Design of Real-Time Displays of Forecast Fields for Targeted End-Users

Ted Strub (Oregon State University, United States)

Event: 2019 Ocean Surface Topography Science Team Meeting

Session: Application development for Operations

Presentation type: Type Oral

Using atmospheric forecasts as the conceptual model, one might ‘predict’ that the primary future operational use of ocean remote sensing products will be as inputs to data-assimilating (DA) ocean circulation forecast models. Here we present our experience in collaborating with Oregon fishermen to design a web site (NVS Seacast, displaying forecasts from an experimental DA ocean forecast model. The model assimilates altimeter SLA, satellite-SST, and coastal radar surface velocities along the Oregon Washington coast.

Most people would agree that the information products and systems should be developed in collaboration with their intended end-users. However, the methods involved in 'Collaborative Development' are not well-defined and need to extend far deeper than simply asking potential end-users what they want, for example, surveys that ask whether sea-going end-users need to see depths in meters, feet, fathoms or furlongs. Even with such survey information, those designing the systems still rely on their imaginations to guess how their products inform the decisions of those receiving the products. The more basic problem is one of mutual ignorance: The Information Providers do not understand how the information will be incorporated into the critical decisions made by end-users; while Those with the need for the information contained in the products do not understand the range of data that are available from the Data Providers to be converted into the Information Products. Thus, the entire chain needs to be considered as a whole system to provide the best value to all involved.

In the process used to develop Seacast, a series of group discussions and one-on-one interviews were held between: representative regional commercial fishermen (end-users); those designing and modifying the display web site (Information Producers); and those providing real-time data and model forecasts (Data Providers). The focus was on: (1) What decisions the fishermen need to make for their safety and success, and (2) How the available data about present (and future) ocean conditions could best be converted to Information Products and presented to aid in those decisions. The research also involved a more basic examination of the perceptions of risk and uncertainty for each of the groups. The process led to the identification of the most important information to be communicated to aid in end-user decisions, along with suggestions for visual formats that would be most useful at sea or on land (sometimes different). The data providers also communicated the limitations of the available data (observations and forecasts). The lessons learned have a wide range of possible applications in the development of a range of satellite-derived real-time oceanographic products

Oral presentation show times:

RoomStart DateEnd Date
The Monroe Hub Wed, Oct 23 2019,10:00 Wed, Oct 23 2019,10:15
Ted Strub
Oregon State University
United States