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Thread: The Köppen–Geiger climate classification made simpler (I hope so)

  1. #1
    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    Default The Köppen–Geiger climate classification made simpler (I hope so)

    I see that lot of people have a hard time with their climates when they are creating their world. I'm not an expert, but I'm trying to make it simpler when it come to the climatic zones.

    I used this as the main source of information : Köppen climate classification - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    But also other pages and some scientific articles. Sadly, I wasn't able to find the original version of the classification other than in german but I can't read it. From what I understand the information on the wiki seems pretty solid but also very confusing. The information is there (most of it) but it's not very easy to understand. The first part I did was to collect the info on the wiki and also elsewhere to get a clear definition for each climatic zone: what it is but also where to place them: where they are the most likely to appear. It ended in something relatively complex and a long document. I still have some questions so I would like if someone could tell me what he thinks about it. By trying to make things simpler yet accurate I fear that I might be missing the boat.


    Things left to do:
    Find if others fantasy climates are possible
    And possibly making some table/graphic

    Questions :
    Is the description of the climates ok ?
    Temperature in degrees or by category?
    East and west: is it possible to have it the other way around?
    Wiki Color scheme wrong? it could be improved
    Easy to understand?
    would some infographiccs make it easier ?
    [INDENT]I was considering making a map with the different latitudes of each climate, where they are usually located.
    A graphic showing the maximum temperature yearly and by seasons for summer and winter (I just need to be sure my numbers are ok)
    Make a table with climate characteristics (like in page 6 but with more info)
    a graphic like this with the description of the climates but also for the individual letters. They could be all side by side. like this:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by Azelor; 07-30-2014 at 09:39 PM. Reason: File contain too many mistakes, will be back

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    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    My main goal was to find if there was a link between the climate and population density. And if so, to find what density would be for one specific climate.
    I realized I had a serious issue with a state with similar climate to India and somewhat similar size but the population was about only 9 millions people. I did not make sense and I had no answers how to get population density numbers right.
    I also happened to have no clear idea on where to place the climates. That's why I'm doing this, and hopefully I can work on the second part after this one is finished.

    But I admit that I'm not sure the population density numbers will make sense. We will see that later.
    Last edited by Azelor; 07-26-2014 at 08:12 PM.

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    Guild Apprentice Gracious Donor Iggy's Avatar
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    I tried to open the file but OpenOffice tells me it's damaged. Does that document come in any other format?

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    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    It's a .doc
    I will replace it with a pdf
    Last edited by Azelor; 07-23-2014 at 02:37 PM.

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    Guild Apprentice Gracious Donor Iggy's Avatar
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    OpenOffice Writer can read and write .doc files just fine. Except for this one.

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    I've read the whole thing, it is helpful indeed Azelor.

    Being a science teacher and an amateur climatologist/geologist (in fact, an amateur world-builder), I can follow all of it pretty easily. Dunno how less science savvy folks will manage it, but it doesn't seem complicated.
    I think it is a very valuable add-on to the tutorial I (we) are currently building.

    It made me think of one more climate map that would be very useful: a cross-reference between rain pattern and temperature, to make a two-colored map separating areas where evapotranspiration is greater / lower than precipitation. This could perhaps be helpful (do you think it would be helpful?)

    Picking up the word usage in my tutorial, what do you think of this?
    Lower precipitation than evaporation (DRY seasons)
    Very Hot + Moderate/Low/Dry
    Hot + Low/Dry
    Warm + Dry
    Roughly equal precipitation to evaporation (MODERATE seasons)
    Very Hot + Wet
    Hot + Moderate
    Warm + Low
    Mild + Low
    Cold + Dry
    Very Cold + Dry
    Higher precipitation than evaporation (WET seasons)
    All remaining combos

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    Guild Apprentice Corvus Marinus's Avatar
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    Breaking down the meaning of each of the letters is really helpful in understanding the details of the system. And I think Part II: Climate Zones will be very useful; it's a lot clearer than Wikipedia. The formulas in Part I, for me (not very science-literate), do not translate into immediate usefulness in worldbuilding; but I can easily take Part II and use it to "proof" my map after it has gone through Pixie's system.

    If I am still around when you have a final draft, I will happily check it for spelling/grammar/formatting, if that is something you'd appreciate.

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    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pixie View Post
    I've read the whole thing, it is helpful indeed Azelor.

    Being a science teacher and an amateur climatologist/geologist (in fact, an amateur world-builder), I can follow all of it pretty easily. Dunno how less science savvy folks will manage it, but it doesn't seem complicated.
    I think it is a very valuable add-on to the tutorial I (we) are currently building.

    It made me think of one more climate map that would be very useful: a cross-reference between rain pattern and temperature, to make a two-colored map separating areas where evapotranspiration is greater / lower than precipitation. This could perhaps be helpful (do you think it would be helpful?)

    Picking up the word usage in my tutorial, what do you think of this?
    Lower precipitation than evaporation (DRY seasons)
    Very Hot + Moderate/Low/Dry
    Hot + Low/Dry
    Warm + Dry
    Roughly equal precipitation to evaporation (MODERATE seasons)
    Very Hot + Wet
    Hot + Moderate
    Warm + Low
    Mild + Low
    Cold + Dry
    Very Cold + Dry
    Higher precipitation than evaporation (WET seasons)
    All remaining combos
    Good to know.

    Were you considering a map or some info graphic like this one : http://powerfulinfographic.com/wp-co...parency-11.jpg
    I don't know about the idea. There is a relation between temperature and minimum precipitations to avoid desertification. Did you know that the Sahara would need between 3000mm and 6000mm of rain per year to become a moderate climate similar to Spain? That's a lot of water and it's just the minimum.

    There is a part in the guide where I talk about yearly precipitation not seasonal. The problem with the classification is that it compares the driest month with the wettest without taking in consideration if the driest month is really dry. Sometimes, it's not the case. It's considered dry only because the wet month receive a lot more rain. So the letters s and w are more or less valuable here. At the equator, at least we know that under 60mm it's considered dry.



    edit : this ! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aridity_index

    and this : http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...dity-index.png
    Last edited by Azelor; 07-25-2014 at 05:58 PM.

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    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corvus Marinus View Post
    Breaking down the meaning of each of the letters is really helpful in understanding the details of the system. And I think Part II: Climate Zones will be very useful; it's a lot clearer than Wikipedia. The formulas in Part I, for me (not very science-literate), do not translate into immediate usefulness in worldbuilding; but I can easily take Part II and use it to "proof" my map after it has gone through Pixie's system.

    If I am still around when you have a final draft, I will happily check it for spelling/grammar/formatting, if that is something you'd appreciate.

    I got the idea and some of the info from the french page of the wiki. But I think some info were not 100% accurate. It's hard to tell since I made a lot of modifications+translation to english. Talking a'bout spelling, I have no doubts that there is room for improvement. Thing I did not know: the rules for capital letters in english are very different from french.

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    Guild Expert Azelor's Avatar
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    Hey, I got some numbers!

    Replacing this :

    • If less than 30% of annual precipitation occurs in the summer : Annual precipitation (mm) < 20 × average annual temperature (°C)
    • If more than 70 % of annual precipitation occurs in the summer: Annual precipitation (mm) < 20 × average annual temperature + 280
    • Else : Annual precipitation (mm) < 20 × average annual temperature + 140
    o If annual precipitation is < 50 % of the threshold = BW: desert climate
    o If annual precipitation is between 50 and 100 % = BS: steppe climate

    by this:

    if the annual precipitation (in centimetres)

    are Greater than R= humid
    are Smaller than R but greater than R/2= semi-arid
    are Smaller than R/2= arid

    R=2 x T if rainfall occurs mainly in the cold season (s=summer dry)
    R=2 x T + 14 if rainfall is evenly distributed throughout the year (f)
    R=2 x T + 28 if rainfall occurs mainly in the hot season. (w= winter dry)
    (T= mean annual temperature)



    Examples:
    Biak Indonesia (climate Af) precipitation = 284 cm: T= 27
    R=2 x 27 + 14
    R= 68
    R/2= 34
    284 is greater than 34, therefore it’s a humid climate (that is really wet)

    Let’s try with Rome (Csa) T= 15,2 /precipitation 80,4 cm
    R=2 x T
    R= 30,4
    30,4 is greater than 15,2 = humid

    Los Angeles (Csa) T= 17,8 precipitation: 45,2
    R=35,6
    45 is greater than 35,6 but it’s much closer (R= 38 downtown LA partly because large cities tend to influence climate)

    Tehran BSk (semi-arid): t=17 precipitation = 23
    R=34.
    23 is smaller that 34 but larger than R/2 so it’s semi-arid

    I tried with Tabriz (also BSk) and it was considered humid !
    Last edited by Azelor; 07-30-2014 at 01:18 PM.

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