passing arguments, contouring

From: Jeremy Winick <winickjr_at_nyahnyahspammersnyahnyah>
Date: Tue Jun 11 2013 - 14:32:55 MDT

I am trying to learn ncl as a long time matlab user who is retired and
cannot afford new licenses.
My first problem I am attempting is plotting contours of satellite
retrieved data on map projections.
I have gotten this to work to some extent, but want to automate the
process and don't see how to do it efficiently. The data comes from limb
retrievals of satellite passes, 15 orbits per day. At least one day is
needed to get the longitudinal coverage, and sometimes two or three days
will help fill in more points.

To contour temperature at some altitude or pressure level, using
gsn_csm_contour_map_polar I am currently using natgrid to put the
temperature data at each lat, lon point on a uniform grid. Then after
setting, units, named dimensions and coordinate variables I can get the
plot. With one day of data these contours often have some "non-smooth"
features. Is there a way to get smoother contours or better griding.
Note that these temperature points are measured at different times and
maybe getting a grid should not just use nearest neighbor type methods
but is there a way to weight points by how far apart in time?

Now, to the problem of automating. All the examples I see on the web
pages surely don't fit my type of need. The data opened in the script
uses a specific name. My data is data that has already been analyzed and
it in large ascii files - column format. Although all columns are not
numeric, readAsciiTable seems to work although the column of the data
that are not numeric (say dates in Feb12 type format) are not usable. I
want to tell the script what the file to open (changing from run to run
or incorporated in an csh-shell or bourne shell script, and also pass
which days, and which column (temperature at one of a few levels).
Setting enumerable environment variables seems like an awkward solution.
Passing these as command line arguments would be very nice (like in
matlab), but I haven't seen that this is possible. My work around now
would be to open a fixed name file that I read in the script and change
it each run to change these important parameters. I think I must be
missing something that is basic, since my problem doesn't seem to be

One other complaint is that the web page support when viewed on Firefox
20.0 does not print correctly. Only the first page (and not even all of
it) prints. I know these pages are designed for online work, but having
ten or more open at a time and going back to just one or two, it would
be easier to have those two printed out.


“What is wanted is not the will to believe,
but the wish to find out, which is its exact opposite”
  ... Bertrand Russell
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Received on Tue Jun 11 14:33:06 2013

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