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Seeing Spots

This clear and accessible text describes the methods underlying short-term climate prediction at time scales of 2 weeks to a year. Although a difficult range to forecast accurately, there have been several important advances in the last ten years, most notably in understanding ocean-atmosphere interaction (El Nino for example), the release of global coverage data sets, and in prediction methods themselves. With an emphasis on the empirical approach, the text covers in detail empirical wave propagation, teleconnections, empirical orthogonal functions, and constructed analogue. It also provides a detailed description of nearly all methods used operationally in long-lead seasonal forecasts, with new examples and illustrations. The challenges of making a real time forecast are discussed, including protocol, format, and perceptions about users. Based where possible on global data sets, illustrations are not limited to the Northern Hemisphere, but include several examples from the Southern Hemisphere.