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Change in Numbers [anfischer.com] is an informative extension of an existing public display that features the actual ambient temperature in the city. The additional display calculates and shows the difference in temperature to historical statistical weather data of the past. In this case, the display calculated the difference of the month February to the same month about 50 years ago. By doing this, it aims to raise the public awareness of anthropomorphic global warming.

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7 COMMENTS

Great post. But I think you mean anthropogenic GW, not anthropomorphic. It's a funny slip though :)

Mon 09 Mar 2009 at 7:15 PM
Allan

This is rather silly, if not downright dishonest. On average, global temperatures have risen 0.8 degrees C since 1880. So even if the change were constant, it would only be 0.3 degrees since 1958. In addition, I think the 1950s were a rather cool period overall.

Mon 09 Mar 2009 at 11:11 PM
John S.

John, do you have a reference for that? I'd really be amazed if that turned out to be true, especially because if the temperatures have only risen .8ÂșC since then, what's been causing the poles to melt and rise sea level?

Tue 10 Mar 2009 at 1:37 AM

While the intentions are good here, it concerns me that the viewer may come away with an impression that is the opposite of that which was intended.

It seems to me that this display might often indicate a negative value due to fluctuations in temperature related to local weather conditions. While it is tempting to use tangible, real time measurements to communicate about climate change, I think the fundamental difference between weather and climate undermines the conveyance of a clear message. The impression I get is that, unfortunately for "easy" public education, to really grasp the idea that climate change will increase the likelihood of abnormal weather events (weather warming or cooling, droughts or floods), one needs to engage with long term data.

Tue 10 Mar 2009 at 4:41 AM
Ed

great post and great blog. When I first landed on the page I didn't really get the design and nearly left but have just spent 20 minutes looking around. Don't think I have seen a design like this before on a blog, very visual :)

Tue 10 Mar 2009 at 9:39 AM

Is this sign simply to create public unrest? It would seem to serve no other purpose.

Tue 10 Mar 2009 at 6:01 PM

How about raising public awareness? People should be uneasy about the subject! I can't remember who, but someone said, and I agree completely: "The thing about global warming is that we thought it was a problem we should solve so that our grandchildren had a better world to live in... Well, seems like we'll be around to see it's consequences instead."

Wed 11 Mar 2009 at 12:48 AM
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