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[my picture]Marko Mäkelä

About ten years ago, when NCSA Mosaic was making the WWW popular, I was wondering why people were making home pages along a common pattern, listing the name, picture, hobbies and favourite web pages of the proud home page owner—useless information for a random visitor. Now, in the year 2003, I am constructing a similar useless home page.


Everything that you have not wanted to know about me and my Curriculum Vitae.

My Family

I met my wife Heli in the beginning of the year 2000. We were engaged a year later, and we were married in 2002. We have two sons, Väinö and Otso, born in 2003 and 2005.

Our sons used cloth diapers (my wife was the first chair of the Finnish Cloth Diaper Association), and they are bicycle enthusiasts just like their father. As my wife started working in April 2008, I became a house-daddy for a few months, so that I can better witness the experiments of my kids.

[5-colour bedspread][6-colour bedspread][4-colour cushion cover][Väinö is wearing the 6-colour bedspread
for the very first time.]I have given my sons mathematical stimuli early on. I designed two bedspreads for them and assigned the manufacturing task to their grandmothers. My wife made cushion covers from some of the wool that was left over.

I am eager to see when Väinö and Otso will be able to figure out what this picture and the programs that generated it are all about.

Some of my Hobbies

old computers
I got my first computer, a Commodore 64, after a long time of begging my parents, in the spring of 1986. I did not acquire further computers until the 1990s, and I will not forget my first computer: in 1993, I founded a public file archive for 8-bit Commodore computers on FUNET’s file server, and I maintained the archive until June 2005. In the summer of 2009, I gave most of my largish collection of Commodore computers to fellow hobbyists, as Väinö needed an own room. I had some other computers as well, such as a few Atari VCS 2600.
When I was about five years old, I learned that it is not wise to connect a flashlight bulb directly to mains power, even though it is possible to attach the cord of a 4.5-volt LEGO motor to the bulb with a piece of tape, and the other end of the wire can be plugged into the cord of a radio cassette recorder. Luckily, I inserted the plug into the wall socket last while conducting the experiment. Digital electronics and embedded systems are easier for me than analog circuits.
I prefer to use free software. Not only to save money but because I and others will be able to adapt the programs to better suit my needs. I have written some free software as well, mainly in the C programming language.
Even though we live in a suburb consisting of detached houses with poorish public transport service, we have not acquired a car. Kids and goods are transported by trailers. Thanks to water-proof pannier bags and rain clothes, we can bicycle all year. For long journeys, we usually choose the train or bus.
In the beginning of 2009, I entered the GPS era by acquiring a bicycle navigator, which I attached to a USB dynamo charger of my own design. Because I prefer open systems, I became a member of the OpenStreetMap community. It is great to learn new bicycling routes near and far from home and add them to the map. Even on long journeys, one can use silent small roads without getting lost. I use and make a map of Finland for Garmin devices.
Late 2011, as the GPS trace transfers from my Garmin Edge 705 stopped working, I got myself a SonyEricsson Xperia Active, a waterproof phone that supports ANT+Sport sensors. I plan to contribute to open-source GPS software projects on Android, such as My Tracks and OsmAnd+.