I was born Mark Rogers Johnson in Jacksonville, Florida in the early hours of November 3, 1970. Johnson comes from my father's family and Rogers from my mother's. I lived in Jacksonville for six years, but most of my memories come from home movies my grandfather ("Gramps") took on visits down from Connecticut and particularly intense childhood dreams about dinosaurs.
In 1976, my family moved to Gainesville, Florida, where I did most of the growing up I remember (see above). I immediately entered Glen Springs Elementary school, where my mother taught (and still teaches) art. In the second grade, I tested into the Enrichment program at Glen Springs, where I met many great friends and teachers.
In 1982, I was promoted to Westwood Middle School. It was there that I began my relatively short musical career as a trombone player. It was also there that I entered my very first Science Fair, although I made it to the regional level fair only by shear luck.
I finally made it to high school in 1985 when I was accepted into the International Baccalaureate program at Eastside High School. I stopped playing in the band, but began to participate much more in math and science. Each year I entered the Science Fairs, and each year I did better. I also began participating in the Florida Junior Academy of Science seminars, presenting papers and attending conferences.
Just before my junior year, a good and brilliant friend of mine, Anuj "Steve" Narang, and I attended the Student Science Training Program at the University of Florida. We were both relatively young for the program, but ranked in the top twenty out of that year's 135 participants by the end. We both continued our research afterward, and took our projects to the 1989 International Science and Engineering Fair, where we won several international prizes for our school.
In the summer of 1989, just two weeks after graduating from the International Baccalaureate Program, I moved to Atlanta, Georgia, where I now live, to attend the Georgia Institute of Technology. I started in the Chemistry program, but later switched to the College of Computing and then to the Science, Technology, and Culture (STAC) program offered by the School of Literature, Communication, and Culture (LCC for short).
After a little over five years of attending classes and working full time in the Cooperative Education program, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Science, Technology, and Culture. I continued working for various faculty in the schools of Psychology and Physics for the next nine months until the time was right for me to enter the Masters Program in Information Design and Technology, which is also offered by the School of LCC.
To date, I have finished my first quarter of IDT and am having the greatest time of my life!