Bill Otto's Home Page

I am not the Congressman from St. Louis.
I was an engineer and scientist who worked on the Space Based Laser.

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Topics that might interest you

Bad Science - Everything they taught you is wrong
This started with my frustration at some misinformation - they taught you that heat doesn't travel through a vacuum, that light travels in straight lines, but sound does not, and that glass is a liquid and it flows. It took much longer than it should have to understand these tings because I believed my science teachers, but they taught me lies!

Blue Ice Tests - Comparison ice versus commercial product to keep your food cold.

Vacuum Bottle Tests - Comparison of various vacuum insulated bottles

Space Based Laser - The History
I was directly involved in the Space Based Laser from 1979 to 1986. In 1997, I became involved again and was the technical lead for the beam control team. I continued to be involved and in 2001 was the head of the system level systems engineering, serving as the chief system engineer. During that time, I compiled a lot of information about the history. Of course, I relied on a lot of friends who were involved during the years that I was working on other things. I gratefully acknowledge their contributions.

Camera Tests - Performance of different types of cameras compared
I started this when I borrowed a friend's Sony TX7 and tested it. I took comparison shots with a Casio Exilim x75, a Fuji z70 (an inexpensive camera inspired by the Sony TX7) my Fuji s7000 bridge camera, and my Canon T3i.

Camera Flash Units - All About Strobes
I show that there is a calculable relationship between Joules (or watt-seconds) of energy and the guide number of the strobe. The current favorite term for this units is "speedlights." I also show many examples of circuitry for the devices, and many tests using various types of bounce and diffusers. You'll find that the design of the diffuser makes little difference.

Wide Angle Lens Attachments Tests
I have tested the Bower, the Raynox DCR-5000, and the Rokinon with my Canon T3i. The results clearly show why the $300 for the Rokinon is not wasted.

Language Quiz Page 1 - Experimental I first set this up for a translator friend of mine who is Italian.
Language Quiz Page 2 - Continuation
This is a test with some sentences in Italian with a multiple choice as to the best English translation. This is always tricky, because I do not speak British English.


Current Story
A Storage Case for the Camco Stove/Grill

Some people asked me about the Camco Stove. I said it works well enough, but its odd shape makes storage in a travel trailer a bit difficult without building a box for it. So here is the box I built.

Basic box is made of 3/8" good quality (sanded on one side, softwood) plywood.

The whole fit is a little tight. If I had to do it again, I'd make the box a little wider than 14 5/16 in. Allow another half inch. or allow an inch and use half inch thick foam on either side.

The bracket and the gas hose fit nicely in the bottom of the box.

I had some 1.5" x 1.5" polyethane foam - the same stuff used in swimming pool noodles - to keep the grill from tipping.

Box is held together with 10 1 X 1 screw blocks and 1" drywall screws. 1x1 blocks are also used as handles.

Box is 22 1/8" long

Box is 14 5/16" wide

Box is 11 7/16 " high, including the 3/8" bottom.

Grill mounted on the back of an RV trailer

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Personal data

  • married
  • four children
  • live in Northern Colorado

First attempt to make mobile friendly: March 10, 2017

Last updated 03/12/17 . First posted November 1, 1997.