Seeing the Wood for Trees

Welcome to This site hosts some C++ software tools for analysis and graphing of time series data, and an interactive graph generator where you can play with different ways of analysing data.

Climate data

These tools could in theory be used for any time series but the main rationale for their existence is for analysis of historical climate data. The idea is to allow you to go to the source data and look for answers to questions like:

  • Has the Earth got warmer recently?
  • Is it still getting warmer?
  • Is CO2 the only explanation for what has happened?
  • Are there solar cycles involved?
  • Are there other influences we don't understand yet?
  • If so, how much do they account for?
  • What is likely to happen next?

It's not the place of this Web site (or anyone else) to tell you the answers, even if I could! This is just a tool to help you dig into the data to help you form your own opinions. Whatever you decide the most important thing is that you learned what the issues in analysis are and how to test your ideas against real data.

Beware sharp tools

However, with sharp tools comes great responsibility... Please read the notes on things to beware of - and in particular on the problems with short, cherry-picked trends. Remember that the signals we are dealing with are very, very noisy, and it's easy to get misled - or worse, still to mislead others.

About this site

This website is a self-funded personal project by Paul Clark, a British software developer and practically-oriented environmentalist and conservationist. You can provide support through my Charity Tip Jar if you like.

Please note:

I have no particular axe to grind in the "Global Warming Debate" one way or the other. Indeed, as a life-long Green I think a shift to a efficient and sustainable way of life is a Good Thing whether or not CO2 is a significant problem in and of itself.

My aim here is only to use what skills I have as a programmer to help others with greater domain knowledge to discover and debate what is happening. No angle, no hidden agenda.

After 30 years of messing around with (and being messed around by) computers and complex software, I would just say this:

Computers are great tools for helping you think; just never rely on them to do the thinking for you.

How you can help

I welcome constructive suggestions of new algorithms or datasets I could add, and in particular help from experts if I've got any of the maths badly wrong (which is quite possible).

Mail me at 'paul' at this domain. Flames will be silently extinguished.

UAH 5.5

Update to UAH v5.5 & GISTEMP fix

19th November 2012:

WFT now uses the new UAH 5.5 dataset. Here is their changelog describing the rationale for the update.

I've also fixed a problem in the GISTEMP file reader which was adding a bogus zero sample to the end of the dataset.



18th April 2012:

WFT now includes the new HADCRUT4 dataset from Met Office Hadley.

Here's a quick comparison of HADCRUT4 with HADCRUT3.


Now including CRUTEM4 data

12th April 2012:

Rather late to the party, but WFT now includes the new CRUTEM4 dataset from Met Office Hadley and East Anglia CRU.

Here's a quick comparison of CRUTEM4 and CRUTEM3. CRUTEM4 seems to have a markedly higher recent trend (2.8°C/century) than CRUTEM3 (2.2°C/century).

Draw your own conclusions!

Charity Tip Jar

Charity Tip Jar for the Woodland Trust

1st January 2012:

A number of people have kindly suggested I provide a 'tip jar' as a reward for keeping WFT running, but I've always been uncomfortable with taking any payment myself because it's crucial that WFT is seen as independent of any agenda-driven funding.

However, I've decided to open a Charity 'tip jar' in favour of the British Woodland Trust. Please visit if you find WFT useful and would like to provide encouragement.

Many thanks,