Taking the temperature of weather apps

With much of the Gulf of Mexico and the Eastern seaboard in the grip of hurricane season, residents might want to update their iPads with the latest weather apps. (The iPad doesn’t come with a basic weather app, unlike its smaller sibling, the iPhone.) Mashable’s Elizabeth Woodard has a few suggestions.

For basic information in an uncluttered display, Magical Weather presents a week’s worth of temperatures in a transparent pane over an animated background. Users can swipe to retrieve an hourly forecast.

For all the bells and whistles, Intellicast HD displays a full 10-day forecast with charts, graphs, sunrise and sunset times, moon phases, a radar picture, storm cell tracking, wind direction and a weather blog.

For customizable graphs, Seasonality Go shows users a series of screens they populate with weather data. Users can move and resize the panes with forecasts and maps until they find the one they want.

Some apps, like WeatherBug and The Weather Channel, are also available for iPhone and Android devices.

Now if they’d only keep the roof from leaking.



PR firms see growth in 2012

More than half of America’s biggest PR firms say revenue and headcounts rose last year over 2010.

According to the Council of Public Relations Firms, which represents more than 100 of America’s leading public relations agencies, 70 percent of firms report that final 2011 revenues will be higher than in 2010. Only 13 percent anticipate lower revenues. Growth is coming from the consumer product, healthcare and energy sectors.

More than a third of those firms anticipate higher budgets in 2012. Some 60 percent report increased headcounts at the end of 2011. About three-quarters of firms expect an increase in social media services while more than a third expect growth in business-to-business, corporate communications and issues management.

The council notes one other trend for 2012: 57 percent of its agencies foresee partnering with outside firms to expand their capabilities.