TPW TV: Collegiate Climbers

March 27th, 2015
Rock climbing in Texas

Rock climbing in Texas


This is Passport to Texas

To these University of Texas at Austin students, climbing to the top takes hard work, but in the end, it’s about fun.

04— I’m Will Butcher; I’m Christina Nguyen; I’m Zephyr Suerte Lutz-Carrillo, and I’m a member of the UT Rock Climbing Team.

They are all members of the team, and you’ll meet them in a segment on the PBS Texas Parks and Wildlife TV series next week.

05— I enjoy rock climbing because it’s really just you and the rocks; so, it’s very meditative in that sense.

Collegiate climbing didn’t exist until this guy came along:

13— I’m John Myrick, the head coach of the climbing team at the University of Texas. Collegiate climbing didn’t exist until 2008 when I started the pilot series here in Texas. And in 2009, the
nationwide collegiate climbing series was born.

During the TV segment, watch these climbers compete against other schools on an indoor rock climbing course.

13— Whenever you see your teammate on the wall, just cheering them on; because that, really, is what helps them get to the top. You push a little further – maybe it’s to the top, maybe it’s not –
but you definitely get a second wind by them cheering you on and having your back.

Find out how the UT Climbing team did at the most recent collegiate championships, next week on the PBS Texas Parks and Wildlife TV show.

Check your local listings.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Wildlife: The Nine-Banded Armadillo

March 26th, 2015
Nine-banded Armadillo crossing road.

He got across…this time.


This is Passport to Texas

The nine-banded armadillo is a Texas icon that has captured the imagination and hearts of Texans and non-Texans a like. Sadly, though, the only time some of us have seen an armadillo is in a flattened state on Texas highways.

About the size of a terrier dog…and covered with bony plates the color of pavement…it’s easy to understand why motorists might not see the armadillo as it attempts to cross roadways on summer evenings in search of food.

Speaking of the preferred cuisine of armadillos… they enjoy a diet of worms, beetles, larvae and caterpillars, among other “delicacies.”

Armadillos generally live where the soil is easily dug – because they probe for food beneath its surface. You’ll find the largest populations of armadillos where the soil texture is sandy.

Although the armadillo can swim, it tires easily when forced to go a long distance. Yet, if the stream is narrow enough, you might just see this unusual little creature enter the water on one bank, walk underwater along the bottom, and come out on the other side. Interesting, huh?

They’re also able to ingest air, which makes them more buoyant for the times when they do swim. I bet you never think of armadillos in quite the same way again.

Well, that’s our show…thank you for joining us. For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Tech: A New User Experience for TPW Magazine

March 25th, 2015
Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine on an iPad.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine on an iPad.


This is Passport to Texas

Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine has a new app.

09— This is a digital delivery of the magazine; you’ll be able to download it to a device like an iPad, and then you’ll be able to carry it with you.

Publisher, Randy Brudnicki says the app provides the core content of the print edition. But, Art Director Nathan Adams says the experience is entirely new.

21— It would be like if you took Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and handed the sheet music to Yo Yo Ma – a classical cellist – you’d expect a certain performance to come out of that. If you handed it over to Elvis Costello and the Roots, you’re going to get a completely deferent feel; different sound from that experience. Although the core music is the same, the experience is very different.

Elements of discoverability in the app will keep outdoor loving techies engaged, says Brudnicki.

11— So I think people will be able to say: ‘Well, what happens if I touch here? What happens if I hit this button, or swipe this way? What happens? We’ll have some instructions, but we’ll
leave some of that discoverability up to the reader.

Free to download from the iTunes store, the app includes video, audio, and a variety of free content. Readers may purchase the magazine individually or as a subscription—print or digital.

11—You’ll be able to tie in the digital version with your print version if you want, and you can do a combo buy, where you can get both the print and the iPad version for just a few dollars more.

Find details on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Tech: TPW Magazine Evolves with the Times

March 24th, 2015
Evolution of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine

Evolution of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine


This is Passport to Texas

Before Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine Art Director, Nathan Adams started work on an app for the publication, he wanted to know:

03— How do people interact with digital media?

Whereas print readers may find a comfy chair to sit and digest content at a leisurely pace, digital readers consume their content on the go.

06— [So] it was very important to me that we didn’t just take the print version and throw it onto an app.

The app addresses expectations of younger readers coming to the magazine.

08— It‘s not just a matter of reading, but there’s interactivity; there’s an expectation that you can touch and that the app will react to swipes and touches and whatnot.

Adams said these new readers expect traditional print content integrated with the agility, innovation, and depth of a digital platform.

32—[As well as] the expectation of always being connected and of always having whatever information you wanted right at your fingertips. So, for example, if you were reading in the magazine about an activity at a state park, there is an expectation digitally that you should be able to push a button and find out how to get to that state park. How far away is it from where I’m at? Is there a map to that state park? What are the hours? All of that information which would be very labor intensive, very space intensive, in a printed publication becomes just a tap away in a digital version.

The user experience; that’s tomorrow.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Tech: New App for TPW Magazine

March 23rd, 2015
TPW Magazine App

TPW Magazine App


This is Passport to Texas

In the midst of World War II, Texas Game and Fish—the predecessor to Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine—hit newsstands.

09— So, can you imagine what it would be like to start a magazine at that time? We have a print version of the magazine that’s been published continuously since then, and that print version is not going to go away.

Publisher Randy Brudnicki says the 73 year old publication, with black-and-white text and visuals, gave way to modern design, writing and brilliant color photos. What hasn’t changed is its mission to inspire Texans to preserve and enjoy the natural wonders of Texas.

16— We cover most of the concepts that support Texas Parks and Wildlife Department: hunting, fishing, state parks, and other conservation areas. [We have] articles about [the work of] game wardens, biologists…what’s happening with endangered species. Just a big, wide variety of what happens in the [Texas] outdoors.

Audiences change, and Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine is keeping pace beginning with digital issues, which require an internet connection to read, to a new app, which doesn’t. Art Director, Nathan Adams.

16— Well, it was very important to me that we didn’t just take the print version and throw it onto an app. Paper and digital are completely different media. And so, when we sat down and said we are going to do an app, it was very important to say how do people interact with digital media.

Insights on that question tomorrow. Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti