Yes, who is this Bill Porter character and why do I want to get into his mind? That is the question.

Bill Porter is quite a common name. If you Google ‘Bill Porter’ you get an overload of results from a salesman born with cerebral palsy (there was a movie made about him), a jazz band, an animator, to even a guy that ran sound for Elvis Presley. But if you are reading this, you are not interested in those Bill Porter’s. But I know a thing or two about this Bill Porter.

Ok, you got me. I am this Bill Porter. So let me tell you a little about myself. Look me up on Facebook and this is what you get:

Though I think I can do a better job than that.

Born and raised in South Florida, I was a typical Florida kid. Though instead of getting into football (They really tried to get me to play) I seemed to have inherited the family’s knack for engineering. Or maybe it was all those times I stuck a knife into a outlet as a kid? Anyway, I was the last of the true RadioShack generation; learning circuits the old way with tons of “100 in 1 Learning Labs” scattered about. All those springs and jumper wires, I loved those things. No Arduino, not much on the internet, the only way to learn was with one of these babies. I was on a first name basis with the manager of the RadioShack that was within biking distance of my house. I loved being a kid! I even kept some of them through college, they are handy to have around.

Fast forward through high-school (Go Raiders! ) and 3 years of drama productions; through college (Go Noles!) and many, many soldering irons and now I’m an Engineer for the U.S. Navy building Unmanned Systems. What is that? That is the fancy way of saying I work with and build really cool robots. Here’s one of the few public released videos about what I do:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipIQ6ckJ9NQ[/youtube]

No, I wasn’t interviewed, but that’s me in pretty much every other shot. Building robots at work is a blast, and I love the free time I have at home compared to being in college. That’s why I started this site; I wanted to document my projects for the benefit of others. I have a million ideas in my head, and this is where I let them out. So I hope you enjoy my site…

O wait! I forgot to tell you the best thing about working for the government! The federal STEM programs! I can get funding to support bringing science to kids. Did I mention I love kids and promoting science? The true testament to that is my unending effort into a program called the “Science Brothers”. The following is a news special on the program:

[flv w=360 h=264]http://www.sciencebrothers.org/wp-content/uploads//2011/04/ScienceBrothersNews1.f4v[/flv] [flv w=360 h=264]http://www.sciencebrothers.org/wp-content/uploads//2011/04/ScienceBrothersNews2.f4v[/flv]

For information on the ‘Science Brothers’ read this and then check out the “Science Brothers” homepage.

Beside the show, I also have attended local and long distance STEM events:

Yup, that’s me with a robot and a whole lot of elementary kids.

That’s me talking to kids at a Miami High School about robotics. More about it here.

That’s just some of the events I get to do, and it is a blast. There’s also mentoring FIRST robotics teams and visiting class rooms. Currently, I’m working hard to bring a science camp program where kids learn by building an ROV to a local Museum. I’m also putting together a traveling stage act (think Bill Nye the Science Guy, but on a cafeteria stage) to get more elementary kids interested in science. In fact, some of the current projects on my site (and several works in progress) are for use in this science show. I’m out to ignite the flame of curiosity in kids. I think it’s one of the most important things we can do.

Well, that’s the quick and dirty on this Bill Porter. Feel free to browse around and ask me a question if you like.

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  1. 9 Comments.

    • auntie deb says:

      You forgot to tell about when you were learning to walk in NY at Thanksgiving how you studied for a LONG time how the door hinge worked on the kitchen cabinet…open and closed, open and closed….You’ve surely come a very long way from those early years. I’m so proud of you!!! Lots of love…d

    • Bill PorterNo Gravatar says:

      Hmmm… It must be something in the name. I’m another Bill Porter, this one from Connecticut, also an Engineering geek, although you sound much smarter and motivated than I do.

      Thanks for passing on the love of science to the next generation.

      • BillNo Gravatar says:

        LOL! Must be, there’s another William Porter on my base, but he doesn’t go by Bill.

        I was just in Connecticut too, on vacation. My Grandfather, Bill Porter Sr. lives there. Also an engineer, now retired.

        Do you have a website or blog Bill?

    • […] knihovnu, která ještě více ulehčuje odesílaní dat pomocí rozhraní UART. Jejím autorem je Bill Porter a její zdrojový kód je ke stažení na jeho […]

    • Bill PorterNo Gravatar says:

      Hello Bill,
      I’m a retired (’99 @ age 56) Senior Engineering Tech from the Navy’s NSA Crane @ Crane, IN. Now I’ve taken up my second love of photography and that is why my website is @ pbase or photography base. I spent about 34 years working as a program manager over the Pyrotechnic Devices and other Life Saving Devices for all branches of service.
      Every once in a while I Google my name just to see who is out there. Your site is nice and I will keep a watch on it since this is the first time I have seen it.
      Hang loose and don’t get your wires crossed,
      -Old Bill

      • BillNo Gravatar says:

        Must be in the name!

        I work for NSWC in Panama City, it’s a tenant of the NSA base there.

        And you will have to fight my grandfather, Bill Porter Senior, for the title of ‘Old Bill’. A submariner and electrical engineer for IBM back in the day. I’m telling you it must be the name!

        Thanks for leaving a comment, if you ever travel through North West Florida, let me know so we can meet.

        • Bill PorterNo Gravatar says:

          Oh, I did not give you my full photo website link; sorry, here it is:
          http://www.pbase.com/bill77

          I have gone by this name all my life, however, now that medicare has come into play, I am forced to use my first name of John. (Ask the old guys about that one.) There are a long line of John’s in our family also as I am the fifth with a son being the sixth.

          As for traveling through Florida: I used to test at NAS & NS Key West. (Now that was rough duty.) Now the route we take is to Disney World about every couple of years.

    • LouLouNo Gravatar says:

      Billy! Really enjoyed visiting your site! I certainly remember how you took all your battery powered toys apart and put them all back together again. We said electrical engineer at what? 4 years old?? So glad you are enjoying working with and inspiring the kids!! XXLL

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