Adam Porr

Table of Contents


My name is Adam Porr. I live in Columbus, Ohio with my wife and two kids. I've always had a deep love for nature and, more recently, for human-scale urban places. Over the years this love turned into a calling, and after working as an electrical engineer and manufacturing engineer for more than a decade, I left this career to pursue a new vocation in urban planning with an emphasis on geographic information science (GIS). I enjoy using my technical abilities to help leaders make decisions that are economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable and reflect the needs and preferences of the community.

"Headshot of Adam"


I was awarded B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the Ohio State University with an emphasis on signal processing. I have ten years of experience as an electrical engineer, manufacturing engineer, and project manager working on electromechanical systems for the defense, science, and healthcare industries. I also have significant experience in Linux systems administration and software development. More recently my efforts have been focused on geographic information science (GIS) and spatial analysis, particularly in the context of spatial multi-criteria decision models. I am in my second year of study in the Master of City and Regional Planning program in the Knowlton School of Architecture at the Ohio State University, and I am a graduate student researcher at the Center for Urban and Regional Analysis.

In my free time I enjoy reading, hiking, gardening, cooking, food preservation, and spending time with my family. I am a tireless advocate for strong towns, active transportation, and free and open source software. I think Columbus, and Ohio in general, is vastly underrated, and I appreciate any opportunity to show others all of the great things Central Ohio has to offer.

I believe that each of us is a steward for our planet, our cities, and our culture. I believe that by engaging in economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable practices we can build a liveable and productive world not only for our own benefit, but also for our descendants.


The best way to reach me is by email:

I'm active to a lesser extent on social media:

If you need to send me something sensitive, please encrypt it first.

My GPG key ID is F7F72CBA. You may obtain it from a keyserver or from this file. The fingerprint is shown below.

$ gpg --fingerprint F7F72CBA
pub   1024D/F7F72CBA 2006-11-21
      Key fingerprint = 2E02 EEAC EF67 E8B3 1FA5  6DF4 A0FB C0CF F7F7 2CBA
uid                  Adam Porr 
uid                  Adam Porr 
sub   4096g/986E4E4C 2006-11-21


My resume is available upon request. Most of the details are available on my LinkedIn page.


The following sections contain a partial listing of my professional skills. Click on items with links to see examples of my past work, or feel free to review my portfolio.

GIS (Geographic Information Systems)

I have experience with the following aspects of GIS:

Although I am proficient with Esri tools and use them frequently, I am a strong advocate of free and open source software, and I enjoy seeking opportunities to use those technologies (especially QGIS, GDAL/OGR and Leaflet) whenever practical.


Project Management

  • Contract review and negotiation
  • Work breakdown structure definition
  • Schedule and budget planning and control
  • Risk management
  • Earned value management


  • Requirements specification, verification, and validation
  • Troubleshooting of electromechanical systems
  • Manufacturing process definition
  • Failure mode effects analysis (FEMA)
  • Design for assembly/manufacturing/test
  • Basic circuit design and analysis
  • Embedded systems design


Statistical Signal Processing

For my masters program in electrical and computer engineering, my studies focused on statistical signal processing. Coursework included:

  • Signal detection and estimation,
  • Stochastic variables/signals/processes
  • Parameter estimation
  • Digital signal processing
  • Communication networks

Tools and Data

This section contains tools and data that I have generated in the course of my work. I provide them here in the hope that someone else might be able to benefit from them. Please note the licenses associated with each of the tools. Regardless of license, I provide no warranty for any of the resources provided here. They served my needs at one time, but they may or may not work for you. I cannot commit to provide support for these resources, however if you have a question or run into a problem, please send me an detailed email, and I'll be glad to help if I am able.

Emacs / Org Mode configuration

Emacs is a mature and versatile multi-platform text editor. The website for Org mode says "[it] is for keeping notes, maintaining TODO lists, planning projects, and authoring documents with a fast and effective plain-text system", but it is much more than that. For me, Emacs+Org mode is a digital extension of my mind. I consider myself agnostic in the so-called "editor holy war", however I find Org mode so compelling that I suppose I side with Emacs by default. Org mode requires a time investment to be able to use it effectively, but it was worth it for me. It helps to have a useable configuration (.emacs file) as a starting point. Feel free to use mine (below). It borrows heavily from Bernt Hansen, who provides his configuration as well as a tutorial with many use cases on his website. His tutorial is also an interesting demonstration of literate programming using Org mode. The Org mode manual and Worg are also very useful.

Filename Description Size Last update md5sum
adam.emacs Emacs configuration file with customized Org mode configuration 56K 2016-01-08 3ec60cd42f4ed17e75612b5ce7dc7dc1

File metadata lister

This is a quick-and-dirty utility I wrote to list the metadata of files in a user-specified directory in CSV format. As provided, it lists only size, modification time, and md5sum, however it would be trivial to add additional fields. As provided, you will need the md5sum program in your $PATH. You may need to change the argument of the md5sum.split() call in line 34 depending on the output format of your md5sum tool.

Filename Description Size Last update md5sum Python script to create a CSV file containing metadata of files in a user-specified directory. 1.3K 2016-01-08 8b1047dbad032126f8599577d14464a7

Consensus decision making

Years ago I helped start FreeGeek Columbus, a now-defunct non-profit organization that was dedicated to responsible electronics repurposing and recycling, and computer education. The organization was loosely based on the original Free Geek in Portland, Oregon, which still exists, does amazing work, and is well worth a visit if you find yourself in Portland.

One of the guiding principles of FreeGeek Columbus was inclusivity, and to that end we pursued a consensus-based model of decision making. The FreeGeek Columbus consensus handbook, linked below, might be a useful starting for an organization wishing to implement consensus decision making. Although believe strongly in consensus and contributed heavily to the handbook, I also had some concerns about using the model at FreeGeek and I have included those below as well. The concerns are not insurmountable (nor are they all-inclusive), but I believe they warrant consideration prior to adopting the model.

Filename Description Size Last update md5sum
FreeGeek_Columbus_Consensus_Handbook.odt FreeGeek Columbus Consensus Handbook (OpenDocument format) 32K 2010-04-22 df5a1e92b36fabfaa2b906c362d3ded0
FreeGeek_Columbus_Consensus_Handbook.pdf FreeGeek Columbus Consensus Handbook (PDF format) 220K 2010-04-22 d06afa3dc4d01ad968813644ac3873ef6
AMP_Thoughts_on_Consensus.pdf Case studies about the limitations of consensus decision-making (PDF format) 83K 2009-12-02 c9e0e5fc8aca8ee934f5dcea851d4d45

Author: Adam Porr

Created: 2018-01-17 Wed 14:06