Software tools to increase access to and display of data have been developed, and a substantial service activity within CGD has been devoted to outreach and teaching of data processing software, in particular the NCAR Command Language (NCL). NCL is the primary tool used to create the Community Data Sets previously described, and so it can readily access these data and transform them to common grid resolutions. NCL provides scientists with a robust, supported software tool for file handling, computations, and high quality graphics. An overarching goal of the NCL developers within SCD and collaborating members of CGD is to ensure that NCL can address the evolving and diverse needs of the modeling and observational communities. Some examples include:
- Functions which use spherical harmonics to enable highly accurate regridding and derivations from basic quantities;
- Interpolation functions including from hybrid coordinates to pressure coordinates; and
- Special graphical templates that facilitate the creation of figures with consistent style.