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The Coming Storm

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  5,768 ratings  ·  651 reviews
Tornadoes, cyclones, tsunamis... Weather can be deadly — especially when it strikes without warning. Millions of Americans could soon find themselves at the mercy of violent weather if the public data behind lifesaving storm alerts gets privatized for personal gain.

In his first Audible Original feature, New York Times best-selling author and journalist Michael Lewis delive
Audible Audio, 3 pages
Published July 31st 2018 by Audible Studios
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Average rating 3.82  · 
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 ·  5,768 ratings  ·  651 reviews

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Angus McKeogh
Aug 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great, concise story about weather and data science. Some interesting backstory about the current administration. Had me taking baby steps by deleting Accuweather from my phone. Worth a listen. Lewis always has the best information about topics. Recommended.
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Lena by: Everyone
Shelves: nonfiction, audio

The most relevant audiobook of the year.

The unsung heroes at NOAA will likely save your life someday (soon).

Or not.

Check out Audible’s informative page:
Jessica Woodbury
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
At this very moment there is a hurricane heading towards me and it occurs to me that maybe this was not the best time to read this book. While very short, it's very much worth your while. I only wish it was 5 times as long.

This isn't a book about climate change or the growing threat of severe weather. It's much more about how weather predictions have changed and the massive troves of data NOAA gathers. It's also a quiet indictment of the current administration and the many opportunities they've
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
Michael Lewis writes with his usual engaging thoroughness about the Commerce Department, NOAA, and the National Weather Service. He explains the way in which they use big data to solve important problems, and their ongoing fight against the commercialization and privatization of this weather data. It’s under three hours long but it’s chock-full of such revelatory facts and meaty interviews that it often feels like A full length book. However, it did seem to lack the organization that readers hav ...more
Anne ✨
This turned out to be an insightful look 'behind-the-scenes' at the politics and considerations of weather data collection and reporting, specifically: access to the data, responsibilities of the government to warn/protect its citizens and its track record on neutrality in managing it. You will hear about the viewpoints and motivations of different parties, such as NOAA, Public Weather Service, NASA, and profit players like Accu-Weather. It was surprising to learn how much interaction/influence ...more
Sep 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Data scientists, meteorologists, former astronauts, Trump cronies
ETA: Apparently, AccuWeather really, really doesn't like this book. See the comment thread to this review.

This Audible Original is a short work by Michael Lewis, who's written a lot of good non-fiction about economics and politics, including The Big Short and Boomerang, and yet another upcoming Trump book, The Fifth Risk.

The Coming Storm is partly about weather prediction and how the government is (and is not) dealing with it, but a lot of it is about the emerging field of data science, a term t
This short account of how data helps us, and is kept from us, was riveting. Weather data has long been collected by NOAA, and paid for with our tax dollars. Some entrepreneurial types created a way to sell this data back to American consumers via weather apps and websites. Shockingly, they also found ways to make sure that the free government data was buried and in many cases, NOAA and other entities were prohibited from sharing this data. Weather can kill - tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes and ...more
Aug 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Michael Lewis, best known for his financial journalism ("Moneyball," "The Big Short," etc.) has been commissioned by Audible to produce a series of long-form pieces about how well U.S. citizens are served by the large, bureaucratic agencies (Department of Agriculture, Department of Health and Human Services, etc.) that often receive little more than back page coverage in print newspapers. His first entry is "The Coming Storm," which looks at the Department of Commerce, and in particular the Nati ...more
kartik narayanan
Nov 17, 2018 rated it liked it
The book starts off with the Joplin Tornado which killed about 150 people in the town of Joplin, Missouri in 2011. The question that vexes weather scientists and others is why did so many people disregard the warnings provided the government? These people were living in the so called 'Tonado alley' and knew the dangers that tornadoes posed. The rest of the book is devoted to finding the answer to this conundrum.

Michael Lewis then gets into the stories of the people involved, the challenges face
Karen F
Aug 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
Not Lewis’s finest. I’ve enjoyed previous books because they were so well laid out and organized and interesting. I didn’t like his last book that well either.

Hopefully he’ll get back to his old style of writing. If not his next book will be my last.

This book jumped all over the place. He also politicized the topic. Obama = good. Trump = bad. (Of course)

The section on big data was interesting though. Glad it was short.
Aug 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As an economist and a data analytics professional, I loved this book. It highlighted the role of data and how important it is to use the data to increase our knowledge and to improve our decisions. It is sad to see how this administration is destroying one true national wealth.
Mike Smith
Aug 02, 2018 rated it did not like it
I was a big fan of Michael Lewis books, especially "The Big Short." Unfortunately, he has "written" an audio book which is no more than a political polemic designed to derail President Trump's nomination of Barry Myers -- a very good man and well qualified nominee -- to be administrator of NOAA.

How do I know? I'm retired from AccuWeather. I've known Barry since the late 80's.

Just about everything he writes about commercial meteorology is wrong. How wrong? Try this: http://www.mikesmithenterpris
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
michael lewis doing michael lewis things - you may be shocked to hear this but the trump administration may not be 100% altruistic in its policy and personnel decisions - which includes a shithead of mythical extent trying to *paywall the weather*

this is short; owing to graceful oblique narrative and also i think there is some kind of sequel coming? idk but this is 100% worth 2.5 hours, especially if you get it free as an audible subscriber
Donald Sherer
Aug 07, 2018 rated it did not like it
Very disappointing effort from a very good writer. This is little more than a political hack job, don't waste your time. ...more
Lis Carey
The age of Big Data is upon us, and mostly what we hear are the troubling and potentially terrifying consequences of business and government having easy access to all of our data. That's a real problem that we have to devote time and attention to dealing with.

Yet Big Data can do many other things, many of them very beneficial. The misnamed Department of Commerce collects enormous amounts of data about, among other things, the weather. Before the growth of the internet into its modern form, that
Erica Clou
I got this audiobook for free as part of my $15/month Audible membership. (Free as in, it didn't use up a credit.) It's about 2.5 hours long.

There are a lot of really interesting things in this book regarding government data collection and weather data. I don't read enough books about data, especially considering how important it is to our society today. Especially now that I live in an area prone to tornados, I was especially interested in the tornado section.

I don't understand the people who
Aug 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Michael Lewis writes about the Commerce Department and it's captivating and insightful and depressing and hopeful. He could, as the poets say, write about the phone book and I'd read. And enjoy. ...more
Michael Huang
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
A really good, focused piece on an agency that people don’t know much about: NOAA. The more than 12,000 people agency methodically kept weather data on the US for decades and is continuing to improve their understanding of the data as well as their ability to predict disasters, specifically the hard-to-predict tornadoes. The story explains how people in the tornado corridor deals with the storm, how people became weather scientists, how they try to master the difficult art of making their findin ...more
I wish this had been a longer, more in-depth book because I was hooked and wanted more. That said, a fascinating look at the politicalization of weather and more specifically, how private interests in monetizing forecasting does and will have a major impact on how emergency weather situations will be communicated to the general public.

If you have AccuWeather on your person, delete it. Instead, rely on NOAA. (& interestingly, a part of the book talks about how weather forecasts had gotten buried
Aug 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction, audio, 2018
It is appaling what Trump is doing to information collection in the federal government.
Definitely not my thing.
Craig Turnbull
Nov 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
This book was about weather. Yeah it was about weather. I think.

Here's what I can tell you about this book:

1. There was a woman who was once an astronaut involved now in weather,
2. There's lots of statistics in understanding the weather that one guy tried to privatize, and
3. Michael Lewis clearly does not like Donald Trump.

These were lessons that were spoken of over and over again and ones I don't really care about.

Reading it felt a little bit like I'd imagine a cat would feel walking around
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Too short to be a classic or the definitive word on regulatory capture, but still good. A nice reminder that government exists ideally for the public good, to do those things (like tornado warnings and massive weather data collection) that can't or shouldn't be left to the private sector. ...more
3.5ish stars.

Short but thought-provoking.
Brian Vargo
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was ok
I mean, I'm not sure what I was expecting, but it really didn't come together at the end. I still use the NWS website daily so I can't figure out what the point was. It's a long podcast and interesting...some of the info is worthwhile. ...more
Aug 15, 2018 rated it liked it
A short story about weather. Most interesting part is that Trump has installed private sector people to be responsible for the US weather data. The head of NOAH is trying to restrict open data use in order for AccuWeather to be the exclusive for-profit way of getting weather data.

Stephen Ray
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
There was some interesting stuff here, but it left me wondering what the point was.
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing

This should be required reading for every public policy maker, every voter, every high school student. Okay . . . everybody.

This isn't about Global warming, but it could have been. Instead it's the story about how those running the government don't really know what the government does. It's also a story about how private sector interests can abuse government resources for personal gain while obstructing public safety and liberty.

What does the Department of Commerce do?
Guess what . . . i
Ron Versetto
Dec 21, 2018 rated it liked it
A short but enjoyable narrative primarily about the Department of Commerce and the opportunity of information that the department sits on.

Naturally there was some content in there about the Trump administration performing ineptly which only caused frustration because there seems to be no place to escape the follies of Trump and his administration.

The book was interesting and worth the short listen to.
Aug 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Short Audible Original. Looks like he was trying to set up Moneyball for Weather but just didn't have enough material. Interesting story nonertheless about the importance of data in improving weather forecasts. The good guys are intrepid NOAA administrators and data scientist DJ Patil. The bad guys are Barry Myers, nominated by Trump to head NOAA and who wants to put weather data behind a paywall (he is the current head of Accuweather). ...more
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Michael Lewis, the best-selling author of Liar’s Poker, The Money Culture, The New New Thing, Moneyball, The Blind Side, Panic, Home Game, The Big Short, and Boomerang, among other works, lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.

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