[Dashboard] Weather Capabilities for Canvas

Problem statement:

Say a kid usually walks home from school, & they don't know there are thunderstorms outside, because they have been in class all day. So when the kid walks outside, they quickly get back inside, because it's raining outside. A worse case scenario is if another kid walks outside to walk home thinking it's just rain, but there is severe weather in the area, like a Severe Thunderstorm Warning or even a Severe Thunderstorm Watch, which puts the kid in danger. It's critical to know what the weather's like when there's weather problems. Getting back to the first kid, he calls his mom & dad to pick him up from school, but the parents work 30 min away, which turns into an hour because there is much traffic due to weather conditions. So the kid has to wait at the school building for an hour before his parents can pick him up. This situation could have been avoided if the kid knew what the weather was.

Proposed solution:

It would be nice if there was a small weather indicator somewhere in the dashboard. It could show the current weather & tomorrow’s weather. It would help students know what kind of clothes to wear the next day based on the temperature & weather, & it could help students know if they need to call their parents to pick them up if they usually walk home. It could get the location based on where the organization hosting their Canvas service is, as selected by the organization tech managers, or it could be a optional system where you type your location & you get your weather. You could partner with numerous companies, such as Weather Channel (website), Weather Underground (website), and Accuweather, among many others. For severe weather emergencies like a tornado warning, hurricane warning , & flood warning, I think it would be good to take a step further than the weather indicator that would be used for smaller things like severe thunderstorm warnings & heat advisories, because the former situations could be life-threatening. For those warnings, maybe there could be a banner scroll at the top of the webpage that would scroll consecutive times displaying the warning. Or it could be as simple as a pop-up displaying emergency information. Remember, the user would only get the weather related information if they or the district put in their location in the weather indicator system. Please consider my proposal. Thank you!

User role(s):


Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Open
Community Champion

I appreciate the energy and interest to make things better but in my view development of a weather app is not part of the core mission. The Apple and Android stores both have ample 3rd party weather apps along with the app that comes by default with the mobile OS.



Community Champion

I concur with Jeff. This is not part of Canvas' mission.

Canvas is designed to be flexible and allows people (admins, teachers) to embed iframes on a page. If a school really wanted to provide that information to the students, they could create a page or link that did that without Canvas needing to add additional functionality.

There is difficulty in basing a weather app that is tied tied to the institutions location. For many institutions, there is no guarantee that students are at the same location as the institution. I am in the United States but had a student from Thailand a few years ago. That student probably has no interest in what the weather was where the school was. Even if there were no online courses and everyone attended in person, many institutions have multiple locations for the same Canvas instance. For instance, Embry-Riddle has campuses in Daytona Beach, FL, and Prescott, AZ, but the weather is going to be very different there.

For those reasons, it really needs tied to the user's location, rather than the institution's location. An embedded iframe would likely go off the IP address. While institutional IPs tend to be stable, they may be unreliable for home users (right now, I'm being listed as coming from Naperville, IL, about 125 miles away, 157 miles if driving). What is the most reliable is the GPS features of your smart phone or manually inputting a location into one of the weather services. Those are far more suited for this application than adding a weather widget to Canvas.

Community Participant

Also on concur. If this is needed for students, institutions could easily add a 'weather' course and in that course provide a iframe with a site embedded. Or the student could navigate to a local news station.

Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Archived

Thank you for sharing this idea with the Instructure Community!

The Product Team reviewed all feature proposals recently, and unfortunately, this thread was identified as one that they would not be able to include in their current or future plans. While we appreciate your proposal, we also want to be transparent about the likelihood of something like this making it to production.

Thank you for collaborating, and we hope that you submit another idea in the future!