A few years ago, I gathered all my things, packed them in a moving pod, and moved out to San Francisco to start my dream job as a “Hardware Astronaut” at Google [X]. The past few years at Google have been nothing short of amazing. I worked among the smartest people I’ve ever met, and learned an enormous amount. I did everything from rapid prototyping to complete system architecture design, and I had the opportunity to work on several amazing projects, including Google Glass. The technical complexity of these projects taught me about manufacturing constraints, electrical design, certifications, user experience, product design, industrial design, branding, and so much more.
But, I’m always eager for a new challenge. After spending a few years becoming the expert on all things electrical within the Google Glass team, I decided that I was ready to work on a different kind of product. Specifically, I wanted to get back to my roots, by working on a product that could empower people to make amazing things. I considered switching to one of the other teams at Google, such as VR/Cardboard, Robotics, or the Self-Driving car, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that I really wanted to jump back into the startup world. When the opportunity to join Shaper presented itself, I knew what I had to do. Shaper’s mission and product goals resonate very strongly with me – we’re building smart power tools. In short, we want to empower people to make things by creating tools that anybody can use with confidence. As of November, I’ve joined Shaper as the Head of Electrical Engineering. I’m responsible for architecting the electronics for our first product, an augmented reality cutting tool called Shaper Origin. Origin simplifies the process of making by combining the versatility and intuitiveness of handheld tools with the intelligence of machine automation. We think of it as autocorrect for your hands. To fully appreciate what our tools can do, check out our videos on YouTube. Here’s a playlist of some videos showing what our tool can do:
Still curious about how Shaper works? Here’s a handy diagram that explains the technology we’re building:
I’m REALLY excited about what we’re building at Shaper. The world is built with hand tools, but they’ve remained largely unchanged for centuries. It’s my hope that we’ll be able to bring tools into the 21st century, while making it easier than ever for people to unleash their creativity.