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The Science of Extreme Weather

Narrated by: Eric R. Snodgrass
Length: 12 hrs and 55 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)
Regular price: $34.95
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Publisher's Summary

Thanks to an ongoing revolution in the science of meteorology, we can now understand how extreme weather conditions arise, produce far more accurate forecasts, and know how to protect ourselves when dangerous conditions develop. The Science of Extreme Weather is your field guide to the worst that Earth’s atmosphere can inflict.

In 24 exciting, informative, and potentially life-saving half-hour lectures aimed at weather novices and amateur forecasters alike, you gain a surprisingly powerful tool in the face of such overwhelming forces: knowledge. Even as the population of the globe continues to increase, fewer and fewer people are dying from extreme weather. The credit goes to improved forecasting tools along with more accurate computer models that weigh the countless data points that represent the ever-changing atmosphere. As a result, it is rare for a severe weather event to catch meteorologists by surprise.

Guided by meteorologist, storm chaser, and award-winning teacher Eric R. Snodgrass, you learn the fundamental science that underlies blizzards, flash floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, heat waves, and more. You’ll come away with newfound appreciation and respect for weather’s most awe-inspiring phenomena.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2016 The Great Courses (P)2016 The Teaching Company, LLC

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  • Keith
  • Tucson, AZ, United States
  • 01-10-19

Interesting, but an absolute mess of a recording

This recording is a mess, an absolute mess. Whatever editor (if there was one) allowed this to go to publishing is in need of help. Here's just a few of the audio issues I've encountered while listening.

1) Obvious edited-in audio : I'm sure this happens in a lot of these series, but when you have to re-record a section either because the narrator misspoke, or left something out, or the audio was garbled for technical reasons, usually you try in record in a similar environment or mask the audio to make it less evident that something has been edited in. This series contains hard edits where the speakers volume, tone, and the acoustic properties of the room & microphone are drastically different. It's jarring to the point of throwing you out of the lecture, and happens distressingly frequently.

2) Unedited out-takes : Again, if this happened once or twice it wouldn't be an issue, but it seems to happen once or twice per segment/lecture. Where the narrator stumbles over a word, or says something wrong, takes a breath, backs up, and does another take, the editor leaves all of this in constantly, at one point the gap was long enough I thought my player had stopped and I pulled out my phone to check.

3) An entire 2-3 minute segment of audio is played twice. At the end of one of the lectures, the professor tells a story about a record setting hail-stone, this concludes with the lead-in/teaser for the next lecture followed by the "don't try this at home" warning that comes before/after each lecture. Then this entire segment of audio is played in it's entirety, including the story, teaser and warning again. Again, I thought my player had malfunctioned or my pocket was pressing buttons. I pulled out my phone to scrub back and forth to check; sure enough, the section of audio is played twice.

Additional, non-audio issues

- The "don't try storm chasing at home" warning between lectures is annoying, it's like two minutes of the exact same warning each time, even between lectures that don't specifically talk about storm chasing (i.e. most of the early ones).

- Visual demonstrations and visual aids; the professor is constantly referencing visual aids like charts, pictures, diagrams, etc. and doing demonstrations which I can't see. Why would you put this lecture on audible if it has such a strong visual component.

Buried under all of these issues, is an interesting lecture series on how extreme weather forms, and how we monitor and track it, and what to do in case of extreme weather. But something happened during production; either the editor wasn't given enough time, or they had a non-editor do the editing, or raw material/recording they had to work with was just such a mess this was the best they could do, but in any case there is no excuse for allowing this to be put up for sale. It's not unlistenable, but it is an unfortunate blemish on the great courses series. If this were the first course I'd listened to from the great courses (most of them are excellent) I'd think they were a bunch of amateur hacks. Poor showing, very poor showing.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful