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Michael Marking


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Welcome!

I'm Michael Marking, and this is my web site.

     My day job is designing and developing computer systems.

     I built my first computer when I was eight years old: it had one transistor. I've worked with analog and digital, with dozens of programming languages, on machines from microcontrollers to mainframes and large server clusters. My work has gone into aircraft, factories, machines, tools, peripherals, consumer electronics, instrumentation, telephones, radios, and automobiles. I've helped make chips, and the machines that make the chips. It's fun, but the best part is seeing people use and enjoy the products, even when they don't know what's inside.

     Most of my background has been software, but I sometimes have crossed the line to hardware and the physical world. It's hard to write code for embedded systems without knowing a little about control theory and the physics and math used to solve the problems. But the software world is amazing, too. The most interesting problems are the most complex ones, especially those involving multiple computers working together.

     My other interests include mathematics, philosophy, economics, law, and history. I'm also a student of languages, an interest which started when I was young and collected stamps: I wanted to read all those things written in strange scripts on those little pieces of paper from all around the world.

     Nancy E and I live in the mountains of central Nevada, where the population density is about one person per square mile. There are one bank and two grocery stores within about seventy miles of here; for more, for other banks or a supermarket, we must drive at least a hundred miles. This land was a mining claim, patented in 1869 but it hasn't been worked for over a century. It's on a dirt road with no official name. The Pony Express once went by here; some horse people re-create the event once a year, and we can sit at our front gate and watch the rider pass. Our electricity comes from solar cells, and our connections to the Internet are by satellite. This is considered high desert by some, we don't get much precipitation, but we have trees. We're 6500 feet above sea level. Our nearest neighbours, not counting the critters who were here before humans, live two miles away at a U.S. Forest Service compound.

     We have pinyon, juniper, rocks, sage, and quietness for our horses, dogs, cats, and ourselves. We see and hear coyotes, deer, birds, mountain lions, civet cats, foxes, and occasionally a badger. A few cattle graze in the surrounding area, and sometimes elk and wild horses in the valleys below. There are also, of course, the smaller creatures, such as mice and insects. Entertainment includes sitting on a fallen tree or boulder and enjoying the sound of the cicadas, or listening to the snow fall, or maybe just enjoying the breeze.

     I hope you enjoy the site. The menu at the left is the best way to navigate around it.

Copyright 2017 Michael Marking. All Rights Reserved.
http://www.tatanka.com/index.html last modified Sunday, 08-Jan-2017 05:07:06 CET
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