Jonathan Lin

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Ocean and Climate Physics, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO), Columbia Climate School

61 Route 9W
306A Oceanography
Palisades, NY 10923
USA

RECENT POSTS FROM STATE OF THE PLANET

Aug 16, 2020

A Chance of Rain

I was always confused by what a “chance of rain” meant (before I started graduate school and worked on probabilistic forecasts). It’s an odd way to represent a prediction - in practice, people just want to know whether or not it will rain. A “chance of rain” doesn’t give me any information on whether to postpone my outdoor plans other than to keep an eye on my weather app. Despite this, people still have a general sense of probability. For instance, a 10% chance of rain means you can probably go on that run, but a 90% chance of rain means you probably don’t need to water your garden.