Maker • Scientist • Writer
Dallas Maker Community
I am Founder and Executive Director of Dallas Maker Community. We are a non-profit organization that helps, promotes, and safeguards all Dallas/Fort Worth area makerspaces that contribute to the public good. This includes for-profit makerspaces, non-profit makerspaces, college/university makerspaces, public school makerspaces, and library makerspaces.
We also work to support other important maker/makerspace interests in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex. We believe in the power of making, and its ability to change lives. Our goal is to make Dallas/Fort Worth a mecca for Maker culture. By promoting, growing, and living our Maker culture here at home, we will be doing our part to grow and support the Maker Movement throughout the world!
I've always been fascinated by how people interact with their environment and each other. In 2010, I founded Dallas Makerspace, which grew to become the largest all-volunteer-run community workshop on the planet. Dallas Makerspace is one of the proudest ways I have given back. It serves as a monument to show how people can organize and come together to share their passions, leading to massive impact. People not only impact their own communities through makerspaces, but they can impact the whole world.
Dallas Makerspace is more than just a community workshop. It's a place where people can come together and learn new skills, make friends, and create things they never thought possible. It has everthing from woodworking and metalworking tools to 3D printers and sewing machines.
It has grown to become the gold standard for community makerspaces all over the world. What started as a small group of passionate people has become a template for an international makerspace movement that has changed the way people think about making things.
I'm an academic researcher with a diverse background in data science and machine learning. However, I find more fulfillment studying the softer sciences, such as management science, game theory, and human psychology.
Awarded a Ph.D. fellowship from UT Arlington in 2016, my formal research has taken a number of turns. While researching from a Computer Science perspective, I look for ways to use computing to explore the many ways that humans interact with each other and make decisions.
I am an occasional writer of science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories. I like to dabble in all sorts of genres (e.g., I've been facinated by children's fables and often write them for my own children), but I'm always fascinated by the ways people interact with each other, and how they solve problems. My hope is that through my writing, I can help people see the world in a new light.
I'm also a fairly prolific author on Medium, writing on nonfiction topics such as mental health, technology, and fiction writing.
Machine Learning•Big Data•Affective Computing
Facial Expression Analysis•Psychology•Game Theory
Cloud Architecture•Marketing•Programming Languages
Community Leadership•Team Leadership•Management Systems
Information Security•Computer Networking•Electronics
A few proud moments from my life story...
In 2018, I supervised a deep learning research team for the National Science Foundation to build a working prototype of a wearable emotion detection device for the autistic and visualy impared.
In 2018, I conducted deep learning research for the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, New York that could lead to more reliable ways to detect microexpressions in the face from standard video sources.
In 2016, I organized a research team to build a prototype of a wifi mobile disruption-tolerent ad-hoc mesh network for use on the international space station.
In 2016, I was awarded a full fellowship, funded by the Department of Education, to pursue a Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of Texas at Arlington.
In 2013, I received an MSM in Information Security from Colorado Technical University.
In 2010, I became a senior technical architect at AT&T, where I began designing production datacenter and cloud infrastructure. My most notable project was the development of all datacenter infrastructure blueprints for the nationwide rollout of the iPhone's online billing system.
In 2006, I began working as a lead systems engineer for core customer-facing voice and internet applications.
In 2005, I earned a BS in Computer Science from what is now the University of Texas Rio Grand Valley.
In 1999, I began working as a SQL Developer & Database Analyst.
In 1998, I sold a tech startup that I began just three years earlier.
In 1998, after taking many programming courses that included mastering COBOL (in preparation for Y2K), I received an Applied Associates Degree in Computer Science Technology from Texas State Technical College.
In 1996, I began to hire the first members of my support and sales staff.
In 1995, I was hired exclusivily to provide systems support for a startup Internet Service Provider and its customers.
In 1995, I was hired by a startup hardware manufacturer to decompile and reverse engineer a disk caching feature of Microsoft DOS.
In 1995, I became the youngest intern to work in what is now the Information Technology and Security Services division of the Texas Attorney General.
In 1992, at the age of 16, I got my first hourly job as a computer technician, where I discovered the unpleasant duty of paying taxes.
In 1990, at the age of 14, I started the Lower Valley Computer Club (LVCC) in my hometown, which grew to over 100 members.
In 1989, at the age of 13, I built an 8088 IBM PC XT clone from the free parts I had collected while doing computer repair and upgrade work for various business owners at my church. I then put it to work as a BBS that remained in popular use for the next six years.
In 1984, at the age of 7, I wrote my first computer program in Applesoft BASIC that went beyond
copying from the manual:
10 PRINT "MARK"
20 GOTO 10