Bob’s Page


About Me

  • Professional

    As my résumé shows, I have been a software developer professionally for years.

    My first professional programming job was at GTECH Corporation in West Greenwich, RI. GTECH provided lottery services to governments throughout the United States and abroad.

    I started there as an embedded developer, writing software for point-of-sale on-line lottery terminals (the machines that print lottery tickets). Over the years, I worked on software for a number of different systems (other embedded devices and accessories, DOS, Windows, Unix, even some firmware and mainframe work), but I never stopped working on lottery terminals.

    When my wife took a job in Maine in 1995, I thought I’d have to find a new job. My boss thought otherwise! He allowed me to work remotely, which I continued to do in one fashion or another until 2002. At that point, policy changed and all software positions were moved to Texas. Since we were settling in nicely in Winthrop and had two young children in school, we decided to remain in Winthrop and I left the company.

    It was at GTECH that I first started working with relational databases. As often happened, they had a technical need, and I accepted the challenge. The Tri-State Lottery had just installed GTECH’s Lottery Mail Subscription System, which ran on a SyBase RDBMS. Because I was already in Maine, where the Tri-State Lottery data center was located, I was asked to take over support for the system.

    After leaving GTECH, I spent my time doing contract work and going back to school. In 2005, I took a contract with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection to create a program to assist the Bureau of Land and Water in their efforts to maintain the quality of the state’s rivers. While there, a full-time position opened up, and I became a DEP employee.

    In 2007, the state created the Office of Information Technology as a central administrative division for all IT staff. I-ve been working for OIT ever since, still primarily supporting the DEP. In 2012, we moved from our offices in the DEP’s building to co-locate with the other OIT staff.

    While working for the State of Maine, I have primarily been an Oracle PL/SQL and Forms developer. However, as happened at GTECH, I have worked in other technologies as needed.

    My other career, prior to becoming a developer, was as a Machinist’s Mate in the United States Navy for three years. I served the last two of those years aboard the U.S.S. Claude V. Ricketts (DDG-5), an Adams-class Guided-Missile Destoyer, where I primarily worked in the forward engine room, maintaining and operating the ship’s starboard engine, two of the four generators, and many other mechanical systems.

    My service was ended abruptly in 1986 when I was permanently injured and receiving a medical discharge. Luckily, through the “Vocational Rehabilitation” program provided by the VA (now DAV), I was able to go to college to be retrained, since I could no longer physically do the work I had been trained to do.

    Some other jobs I’ve done over the years:

    • Catering Company Kitchen Staff, Taunton, MA
    • Beverage Machine Repair Technician, Stoughton, MA
    • Injection Molding Machine Operator, Taunton, MA
    • Janitorial Staff, Seekonk, MA
  • Personal

    I have been married for years to the same wonderful woman, Linda. She was already a programmer for GTECH when I started working there in 1991 and we took an immediate dislike to each other. Luckily, that didn’t last long, and we were married fourteen months later.

    We moved to Maine in 1995, first to an apartment in Westbrook, then to the house in Winthrop where we’ve lived for the past years.

    Together, we have two awesome children, Teresa, , and Phillip, .

    One interesting fact about my wife and I  —  when we met, we’d both seen penguins “in the wild’. She saw some during her visit to Australia (supporting one of the Australian state lotteries for GTECH). I saw some while going through the Strait of Magellan as part of a Naval tour of duty circumnavigating South America in 1985.

  • Travel

    Some of the places I’ve lived:

    • Providence, RI (born there)
    • Taunton, MA (two addresses)
    • Warwick, RI (two addresses)
    • Westbrook, ME
    • Winthrop, ME (where I live now)

    While going to Westfield State College (now University), I lived in Westfield, MA.

    While in the Navy, I was stationed at various bases:

    • Naval Station Great Lakes, Great Lakes, IL (boot camp and ‘A’ school)
    • Orlando Naval Training Command, Orlando, FL (more school)
    • Norfolk Naval Base, Norfolk, VA (active duty)

    While in the Navy aboard the U.S.S. Claude V. Ricketts (DDG-5), we visited a number of countries and islands, including:

    Flag of Puerto Rico Puerto Rico       Flag of the US Virgin Islands Saint Thomas, USVI       Flag of Barbados Barbados
    Flag of Panama Panama Flag of Venezuela Venezuela Flag of Colombia Colombia
    Flag of Chile Chilé Flag of Argentina Argentina Flag of Brazil Brazil
      Flag of Uruguay Uruguay  

    While working for GTECH Corporation, I had opportunties to travel throughout the United States supporting software deployments. Some of the states I visited:

    Flag of the state of Arizona Arizona       Flag of the state of Missouri Missouri       Flag of the state of Kansas Kansas
    Flag of the state of Indiana Indiana Flag of the state of Georgia Georgia Flag of the state of New York New York
    Flag of the state of Maine Maine (before I moved here)
  • Pages About Me

    Here are some other pages, on this site and elsewhere, where you can find out more information about me.

My Pages

  • Hexa-Gone!
    My on-line game, written entirely in HTML5, CSS3, Javascript and jQuery. Those technologies are not ideal for the type of real-time I/O processing needed for gaming, but it is possible to make a fairly functional game using them.
  • Numeric text generator

    A form that will convert an entered decimal value to the equivalent text. The form will convert integers, real numbers, and mixed numbers. It supports Web services, which is how I used it in this page.

    This was actually the original intent of the program, so that I wouldn’t have to remember to go back and update my Web pages as time passed. Yes, I could have just inserted the numbers, but I prefer the look of numeric text. Of course, once I built it, I had to keep going to see how robust I could make it. The current digit limit is not because the program finishes, but because the Web client times out.

    Use the button to toggle highlighting of the places on this page where I’ve used this Web service.

  • Random number generator
    A form that will generate a pseudo-random decimal integer with the specified number of digits.
  • π Patterns Page
    A page that lists the first occurance of each 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-digit numeric sequence in the decimal portion of the first 1,500,000 digits of π (after the decimal point).
  • Sudoku Trainer Page
    This page is now defunct since browsers stopped supporting NPAPI. Without NPAPI support, embedded Java applets no longer work.
    At some point, I may convert the page to launch the program using Java Web Start.
  • My Blank Page
    If a page has a color, can it be truly called “blank”? If a page is blank, is it truly empty? Visit the page and find out.
  • My LEGO® Page, highlighting some of my creations from the 1990s. Forgive the image resolution – digital cameras were not as capable back then!
  • My LEGO® “Tech Talk” Library
    I have been coaching the Winthrop Middle School LEGO® Robotics team for years (since 2009). In that time, I’ve developed some training lectures, which I call “Tech Talks”, to help the students build better robots. I’ve recently started building a library of these lessons on-line. The library will be continually growing as I get more lessons added and get more pictures, drawings, and videos added to the existing content.
  • Hornet & Three Spiders Page
    Would you like to see three spiders taking on a hornet many times their size? Would you like to watch for almost five whole minutes without seeing the final outcome? I have a video that shows exactly that happening in my own garage. Seriously, I have no idea if the hornet escaped or if one of the spiders succeeded!

My Links To Other Places

I miss my little airplane “<HR>” dividers…

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Updated 2017 DEC 22
Designed and created by Bob Easterbrooks (
Copyright © 1995-2017, Robert Easterbrooks. All rights reserved.