Anthony Mack


Welcome to my homepage.

This page is mostly a place for me to express some of my ideas and also tell you a little about myself. The domain "", is a remnant of a company I created (and then dissolved) in an attempt to fund a feasibility study for my wave energy converter idea (see sidebar Ideas).  I am still looking for a way to find out if that idea is economically feasible and how it could be implemented.  If you have any ideas, please contact me.

First a little about myself:  I have been happily married to my wife Susan for over 20 years and we live in a log cabin in Silverado Canyon, Orange County, California.  Our daughter Jillian still lives with us while she goes to college and works at PetSmart.  My stepsons, Ric and Rob have moved out.  Ric is 5 years into his 1 year trip to Japan.  Rob has recently married, has a child and is now buying a house.

See the resume section below for education and job history, but basically I am a senior systems software engineer.  For those of you who are not into computers, that means I'm a computer programmer who writes the really hard and complex programs.  I like hard problems.  My mom told me when I was a small boy, "The harder the problem, the more fun it is to solve."  It's true, a problem is just a puzzle in disguise. And I love puzzles. So needless to say, I am very happy in my job at Unitech.  However, I can't get enough.  At home, I'm constantly amusing Susan with my creative solutions to every problem (aka puzzle). You might enjoy reading about my WaterGate, solar water heater, pump system, reptile cage and barn.

Finally, there is a section on my hobbies and another on my un-implemented ideas.  These ideas I thought of and designed by myself (mostly in the shower).   Any similarity to existing products or ideas is coincidental. I often find out that someone else has beaten me to it.


Formal Resume

In my position at Unitech, I currently spend most of my time working on a performance monitor. I designed, implemented, tested and documented a performance monitoring tool for our largest client, Hitachi. It is a graphical tool capable of displaying, recording and analyzing critical resources used by hundreds of computers running thousands of threads. The tool presents a Blade or Cluster computer operator with three different views of the entire systemís health. The Analysis View shows which processes and/or threads are in trouble (if any). The Real-Time View allows the operator to see many specific metrics about any machine, process or thread in real-time. The History View presents months of metric data (memory, CPU and lock statistics) in a custom, variable density database. There are also special tools for identifying memory leaks, dead locks, hanging open files, signals, system calls, unexpected terminations and remote core dumps.

The monitoring tool is implemented in two parts: the Agent, a super optimal layer that sits between each application and the OS, and the Monitor, a GUI application written in Java designed to run on the operatorís console. The two halves communicate using a proprietary protocol that allows the monitoring of machines anywhere on the Internet.

Before the monitor, I spent many years developing a half dozen compiler back-ends, also for Hitachi. A back-end is the code generator part of a compiler. It's the hardest part because it does all the code optimizations (both on the high-level and instruction level optimizations).  If I can shave a few instructions off of a code sequence, every customer's application runs faster. The front-end parses a language and turns it into Common Intermediate Language (CIL), a "C" like tree structure language. The idea was to build a front-end for each language (COBOL, C, C++, Java, etc.) And a back-end for each platform (Intel x86, IA-64, HPPA, SPARC, PowerPC, etc.).  Now you can build a compiler for any language that generates code for any architecture. Unfortunately only one front-end took off, COBOL. This means that all the back-ends I worked on became COBOL compilers.

Hitachi 2002 COBOL Brochure

There are many other projects I worked on as well. If you go to page 6 of the brochure, you'll see "XML data handling". That was my baby. I designed it and was project leader from start to finish. For most of the project we had 3 or 4 engineers on the XML team. I also developed Hitachi's XML parser (with DOM and SAX), C++ compiler, linker and other little projects. That's one thing I truly like about working for Unitech, you get to work on different areas so the job never gets stale or boring.

My latest "Cool Project"

No matter how busy I get, I always try to squeeze in a  fun project with my dad.  My dad and I have been building projects together ever since I could walk or could hold a soldering iron (I'm not sure which came first).  When I was little, we built a traffic light controller, tool shed and even a manual/automatic phone exchange together. 

This project was not quite as innocent, it was an electric execution chair.  Ok, not a real one, but it looks good.  I made it for my son's Halloween maze at his house.  It had all the bells and whistles: Ear-splitting sparking and arcing sounds, flashing lights and even smoke.  But the best feature of all was that the main switch was in the hands of the observer.  They could zap you a little or a lot.  Read more.

My next carAnthony

is going to be an Aptera!  Haven't heard of it?  That's ok, no one has.  That is because they don't exist yet.  Aptera is a small startup company down in Oceanside, CA that is trying to make the world's most efficient car.  This car is designed right. They dropped a wheel to reduce rolling resistance by 25%. Anthony They shaped it like a bird, plane, fish, you know; the perfect aerodynamic shape that gives minimum wind resistance for a given frontal surface area.  But most importantly, it's electric.  The Progressive Automotive X-Prize, an unbiased third party observer measured its efficiency at a truly astounding 164 MPGe.  My 4-Runner gets 14 MPG. When gas hit $4 a gallon, it cost me $12 a day to go to work and back.  Once I get this beauty, that should drop to $1 a day in electricity. Check out my gas vs. electric calculator.

I'm #888 in a line of 3000 people waiting to get one.  Unfortunately, they are waiting on D.O.E. grant money to build their assembly line.  It will take 9 months to build the line once the money comes in, so unfortunately I'm not getting it this year.


  1. Electronics
    My current favorite pastime is designing and building little embedded processor projects.  Ever since I discovered the open source Arduino development environment, and the Boarduino kit for only $17.50, I have been embedding processors into everything.
  2. Horses
    Notice I did not say, "horseback riding".  This is because only 10% of having horses is riding them.  We have 2 to 6 horses on our property at any one time, but usually there are 3 (Monty, Willow and Tink).  Monty is my horse and he is as big and as stubborn as I am.  But Monty and I have come to an agreement.  We've got it worked out.  He gets away with almost everything, and in exchange, he takes me where I want to go (most of the time).  If you watch our struggles and fights, you'll see we actually love each other a lot.  Riding with Susan in Irvine park is one of my greatest enjoyments.
  3. Photography
    I have a Canon 10D and I know how to use it.  One of these days I will learn how to use it well, but in the meanwhile, here are a few pics I shot.
  4. Science - Physics, Astronomy, Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Cosmology, Anthropology, etc.
    I have always loved science.  All sciences.  I can't get enough.  However, I am currently very interested in how life got started (PAHS World perhaps) and our place in the Universe (Great Filter).
  5. SCUBA
    I'm an advanced PADI SCUBA diver.  I have always loved being underwater.  As a kid I used to build diving bells out of buckets tied to cinderblocks. It was hard for a 70 pound boy to lift 100 pound weights in and out of the water.  But once it was constructed I would hang out at the bottom of the pool for hours.   SCUBA is cheating.   It's just so easy and fun, and you can do it in the ocean.  At night!  How can you beat that?

Anthony Mack
P.O. Box 604
Silverado, CA 92676
Cell: 714-697-7005
Work: 949-753-1511 x113
Home: 714-649-3036

Virtual Windows
Smart Sprinkler Timer

Stock Ticker
NTP Packet Tool
Jave Dart Game
Reptile Cage
Solar Water System
Ping the Well