Dear Tom,

I’m amazed by the data Frank Wachowski can produce.  I’m assuming he doesn’t leaf through paper copies of weather reports, so what kind of database does he use?

Russ Ruda, Springfield

Dear Russ,

Frank has been observing and documenting Chicago’s weather since the 1950s, so, yes, for many, many years he absolutely did leaf through paper copies of weather reports. While today, the vast majority of his work is computerized, he still has access to paper copies of weather records and observations, along with newspaper accounts of the city’s major weather events. Chicago’s entire history of weather observations has been incorporated into a searchable database, allowing Frank to quickly come up with his plethora of weather statistics. Frank continues to document the city’s daily sunshine, keeping current a database dating back to 1893.