Public availability of primary space weather data is made more convenient by the Internet. The space weather constituency is growing and one finds a vast array of web sites that provide data and information to serve this constituency. Many of these sites are cross-linked and have repackaged data from government sites such as NOAA-SEC. Other organizations make use of available data, add value, and provide unique services and products. There are a growing number of companies having systems that exploit current models and data to provide direct space weather support to customers. Recently, a number of private firms in the USA have formed a Commercial Space Weather Interest Group (CSWIG). This organization was facilitated through with the support of NOAA-SEC, and meetings are typically held at annual Space Weather Week workshops.
As an example of the balance between public and private resources, we make note of the Dynacast® service provided by RPSI that makes considerable use of government data but uses its own array of sounders for added value. Many companies belonging to CSWIG use similar strategies.
In Section 6.10, we revisit this data availability issue, and identify some entities that make space weather data available. It is remarked that it is rather easy to locate information on the Internet, provided one is reasonably conversant with search engines. With some regret, we have steered away from listing the URLs for relevant sites in this manuscript, principally because of our experience with broken links and outdated information. We were also influenced by a strong recommendation from our editor to avoid publishing web sites that may change or disappear altogether over the lifetime of the book.
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