I have been an avid weather geek since 1996 when I got my first crappy weather station with a mediocre outdoor sensor which ate batteries constantly, had a lame indoor LCD panel that showed a few metrics, but no long term history. Over the years, I've tried a bunch of different hardware and software combos. The most reliable have been Linux-based software packages with the Davis Vantage Pro series of stations. Recently, I had the chance to visit Steve @ Datawake and he had an Ambient Weather station he was setting up - I found some interesting new information about what used to be a $500+ hobby, and ways to leverage it on the boat.
Being prepared is something that I'm well known for with all of my friends and family - I'm called Mr. Redundancy. This last weekend, it helped to save our lives when we were stranded in the wilderness with minimal survival gear in deep snow and 15 degree temperatures. This is a story of how technology and being prepared helped us survive a very serious situation. It also reinforces how important preparedness is everywhere - at home, on vacations, in the wilderness, and on the water.