|MadSci Network: Earth Sciences|
All winds on the earth are linear...they are vectors having both dimensions of speed and direction. Winds move from high to low pressure at an angle to the pressure gradient. That angle is determined by the relative strengths of the pressure gradient force and the coriolis force and frictional effects in the layer of the atmosphere closes to the surface. Check out this brief tutorial from the University of Illinois at http://ww2010.atmos.uiuc.edu/(Gh)/guides/mtr/fw/home.rxml
Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Earth Sciences.