Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Wanderers 2007.1.31

I actually missed most of Bill Sheppard's Wanderers presentation, as Tara and I were accompanying Dawn to the hospital for another scan.

Here's from #1298 in our eGroup:

Bio from Bill:
Born: Yes. Sometime in the last century.
Relatively normal K-12 schooling.
Correspondence course in electronics during senior year of high school.
US navy for 4 years as electronics technician.
BSEE U of Denver, last century.
Worked for a few companies.
Clinical engineer at OHSU.
A year and a half with Project Hope in Grenada (after our glorious invasion).
Was registered professional engineer, State of Oregon.
Nothing else notable.

I've been an admirer of Bill's minimalist factals and stereographic polyhedra, all generated from custom assembler on an old dot matrix printer, written at so low a level Windows can't handle it (but comes close -- might be an issue with video RAM), so he boots into DOS.

Then he has this instrument called Not-a-Theramin, with a very simple circuit wired to two sensors. Gordon Hoffman was by and admired the elegance of Bill's circuit's design, thought he could use it in future Saturday Academy classes.

I'll check with Bill to find out if he'd like to open source these resources and add links here accordingly.

Later, Glenn showed us some of the fine handicrafts he's done, including a handmade letter opener with a tropical wood sheath, an antler handle, and a stingray's stinger for a blade.