Read Radar, Make Your Own Forecast

12/13/2010 01:03 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Winter brings out the amateur meteorologist in us. We gaze at the clouds to guess their intent, we lick our fingers to judge the wind, and those of us with rheumatism go weak-kneed for approaching storms. We are in good company: before The Weather Channel, before the National Weather Service, even before the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson was recording highs, lows, clouds, and precipitation. Today, meteorology is no further than the palm of your hand. If you have a smartphone, you can predict whether and when water will fall from the skies... not over an entire state or zip code, but over your exact location. Watch Pocket Science Episode 23, "It's Doppler Time," to find out how:

Disclaimer: please do not use this video as an excuse for stupid decisions (if you're out golfing and you see lightning, go inside).