Welcome to Mark's Page

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(Remember when having a personal "home page" was hip and trendy? I built this a long time ago. I don't maintain it anymore, but I've left it here for the sake of nostalgia. --Mark)

Go here for my work/research page. You may also view my CV/résumé in [Postscript] [PDF] or [Plain text]

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Hobbies

Star trails at the Oregon Star Party Astronomy. When the midwest's climate permits, I enjoy observing with binoculars or my telescope, a 12.5 inch f/6 truss-tube Newtonian that I built in 1998-99. Some special observing interests are the aurora, meteor showers, and artificial satellites.

Check out some of these useful astronomy links:

The Messier Objects Database, provided by the University of Arizona chapter of SEDS (Students for the Exploration and Development of Space).

Want to observe comets? Try Seiichi Yoshida's weekly information about bright comets.

The Solar Terrestrial Dispatch is a good starting place for learning more about the Sun-Earth connection and the aurora (northern/southern lights).

Roaring Creek, Detroit Ranger District, Willamette NF Backcountry Hiking and Camping. I try to get away to the southern hills of Illinois or the forests of upper Michigan or Wisconsin every year in the spring and fall, but natural surroundings were obviously not the main factor in my choice of grad school.

Photography. When visiting scenic places, I enjoy improving my photography skills. Five summers ago I explored a good-sized chunk of the Willamette National Forest in the wonderful state of Oregon. Visit my waterfall page to see pictures of these plus other waterfalls in the midwest and the tropics. I also like to experiment with low light and astrophotography; see the Pohnpei tour below.

Sokehs Rock, Pohnpei, FSM Travel and volunteer work. While in college I had the opportunity to serve as a high school teacher at the Pohnpei Seventh-day Adventist School in the Federated States of Micronesia, teaching computers and some music and math. I really grew attached to the place and the people there, and would love to go back some day.

Take a tour of beautiful Pohnpei! (many more pictures)

Cool fact: Pacific islanders were settling the far-flung islands of the Pacific in ocean-going canoes long before Columbus stumbled onto America. Check out the Polynesian Voyaging Society at the University of Hawaii for more on this often-overlooked history.

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Projects

Comet Hale-Bopp, 20 minute exposure with a 200mm lens on a barn-door tracking mount Designing and building scientific instruments. See my new projects page.

The aurora detectors were my senior design project at Walla Walla College, and one is still operating near Walla Walla, Washington. Coupled with some custom software and a mailing list running on my Linux box, this system can wake you up at night when the northern lights expand unusually far south. There is quite a bit of online documentation now:

If I ever finish with my current projects, I'd like to add computer control to my telescope, redesign the aurora detector so more hobbyists can build one, and play with a device known as a field mill, which monitors the atmospheric electric field.

Bill doesn't live here anymore.
Linux system administration on my personal computer, an AMD Athlon box named angwin.

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Other fun stuff

* Slashdot: "News for nerds. Stuff that matters."
* Dilbert
* The Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5
* The Storm Prediction Center products page, a new favorite of mine since moving to the Midwest.
* Today's Space Weather: What's going on right now in the Sun-Earth environment.
* Interval Signals Online, a neat collection of shortwave broadcast IDs.
* Get the lowdown on one of the Net's most widespread urban legends -- the Craig Shergold story. Or, perhaps you have heard the Rocket Car / Darwin Award legend.
* Another web page devoted to urban legends. This one has a large database complete with a search engine. Learn about the AIDS needle scare, the Neiman Marcus cookie recipe, the FCC modem/internet tax, and more! Impress your friends.

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Last updated 27 April 2003
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