Looking forward to the future of journalism

Is bike commuting the answer to the crazy gasoline crisis of 2017?

A highlight of bike commuting in San Antonio

After Hurricane Harvey made landfall and motorists in San Antonio besieged gas stations like frantic bank customers in “Mary Poppins,” there’s probably never been a better time to try something that lets you avoid gas stations altogether — commuting by bicycle. I’m here to help. We can all come up with excuses to avoid riding … Read more

Web tools and apps to track weather emergencies in Texas

Storm clouds at Woodlawn Lake in San Antonio, Texas

Texas weather can be wild and dangerous, as Hurricane Harvey is showing us this week, so here are some techniques that have helped me track the impact of storms, floods and other natural disasters in San Antonio and other parts of the state: Weather forecasts and warnings The National Weather Service provides so much useful … Read more

Meet Chris Lykins, the funny weather guy at the Express-News

Chris Lykins, Comedic Genius Behind Weather Updates

If you read weather updates on Facebook from the San Antonio Express-News, then you’re keenly aware that it’s summer and the forecaster is not happy about it. “There is no weather,” a typical forecast reads. “There is only this. Always this. Unchanging. Eternal. Forever. This.” Then there was this gem: “It’s mostly sunny and almost … Read more

What’s Evernote for? How about making a vast, searchable archive of all your files

Evernote

Evernote turns eight years old this week. But even after all these years, some people have trouble grasping what, exactly, this mystical app is supposed to do. Is it for taking notes? Saving bookmarks? Taking photos? All of the above? Everyone’s needs are different. But for me, Evernote really shines as a vast, searchable archive … Read more

New search tips for 2014 from Google research scientist Daniel Russell

I couldn’t attend the 2014 Investigative Reporters and Editors conference in San Francisco this year. But thankfully, Google researcher Daniel Russell was there. He gave another excellent presentation about search-engine strategies and posted his advice online. As the Uber Tech Lead at Google, Dan studies how people search the web. He started sharing little-known search … Read more

Telling stories about the unthinkable: How three journalists shined a spotlight on child abuse

In February 2009, an 8-year-old girl from Schertz died, alone, of acute appendicitis — a disease that could have easily been treated if caught in time. In the hours leading up to her death, people concerned about the girl — including officers from the Schertz Police Department — had warned the Texas Department of Child … Read more

How Mexican cartels launder drug money in San Antonio (Hint: Check the North Side)

Express-News reporter Guillermo Contreras wrote a story detailing a federal investigation of two Mexican brothers: Mauricio and Alejandro Sánchez Garza. Federal officials allege the brothers laundered drug money in San Antonio for Mexican cartels.

Check out every insurance claim filed against the city of San Antonio

Advanced Google search results for the city of San Antonio

What happens when you’re hit by a city vehicle and file an insurance claim against San Antonio? Now you can find out by searching a database that tracks every claim filed against the city in the past decade. I stumbled across this story by using Google’s advanced search options. Google lets you search specific websites … Read more

How to do a confrontational interview: Bob Costas grills Jerry Sandusky

Bob Costas’ grilling of accused Penn State child molester Jerry Sandusky should be mandatory viewing for all journalism students who want to learn how to handle a confrontational interview. Costas wielded a strong command of the facts. Listened intently to each answer. Asked focused questions and follow-up questions. And he wasn’t satisfied with vague proclamations … Read more

Texas Highway Patrol Museum raises millions — but spends little money on DPS troopers

Texas Highway Patrol Museum

The Texas Highway Patrol Museum sits on a prime piece of property near downtown San Antonio, across the street from Rosario’s Café y Cantina. Business is booming at Rosario’s, but not so much at the museum. It usually looks empty every time I drive by or hang out in King William. I’ve been kind of … Read more