We have a weather status message at the top of a website we built for a luxury beach rental home on Captiva Island, Florida. When a user visits the page, we pull the weather information from Yahoo’s weather RSS feed, and then we parse out the information we want to display.
Once the information is parsed, we compare to a database of images and weather types and then show an appropriate icon for the weather type. We use tango icons, because they have transparent backgrounds and are a higher resolution than the Yahoo images in the feed. This provides a better look and a more site-specific integrated feel to the weather portion of the page.
When Yahoo throws us a wrench, and we don’t have an icon for the weather type, the system immediately sends us an email and are able to go in and associate the appropriate icon for the weather type. We have some defaults in place, but sometimes you just don’t know; for instance, they added ‘Strong Thunderstorms’ and then ‘Wind/Rain’. We’re waiting for ‘hurricane’ to be added as well.