You may have learned schematic capture and PCB Design basics from my Eagle Tutorials. While I love using Eagle for hobbyist projects, Altium Designer is my preferred design software that I use for making production-ready electronics in my role at Shaper. Altium runs a podcast where they talk about PCB design, manufacturing, and other topics relevant to the electrical engineers who use their products. On the latest Altium Podcast, I joined host Judy Warner to talk about my background, how I design the electronics for Shaper Origin, and what issues are top of mind when I’m thinking about a product’s manufacturability. You can can download the podcast from Altium’s website, or listen via the audio track or YouTube video embedded below!
Working at a robotic power tools company has really gotten me back into woodworking, a hobby that I had previously pursued when I was much younger. I’m particularly proud of this Chinese Checkers set that I just completed (with some help from my girlfriend and my awesome co-workers). The board is a (very heavy) glue-up of solid White Oak slabs. I used a special plunge-cutting ball bit to make the marble holes. The triangles are made using a simple engraving bit, and then the whole thing is cut out using a 1/4″ spiral upcut bit. I got marbles from Amazon. The board is finished with a coat of linseed oil. This design and many others will be available for Shaper Origin users to download and make on their when we start shipping Origin later this year.
Confused? Go check out ShaperTools.com to learn more about the Handheld CNC that we’re developing and bringing to market. And be sure to check out the Shaper Blog, too, where the other engineers/designers and I have been detailing what goes in to making a product like Origin.
I’m very humbled and surprised to share that Forbes Magazine has included me on their annual “30 Under 30” list in the “Manufacturing & Industry” category. The “30 Under 30” Manufacturing and Industry award aims to recognize 30 people under the age of 30 who “invent new technologies that help America make things and get stuff done.” You can see my brief profile here, or in the print edition that comes out on January 10th.
I didn’t get an engineering degree because I wanted to be awarded or recognized (there are better career paths for those who are looking for fame!) – I do what I do because it provides me with a creative outlet that delivers exciting new challenges every day. I suspect that that is the case for most engineers. I love my job, I love my hobbies, and I love sharing what I’m working on with people who want to learn from it. It’s exciting to be recognized by Forbes, but I’m really just doing what I love. It feels kinda weird to be given an award for just doing the stuff that I want to do anyways, but I’m grateful nonetheless and I promise to continue working on the things that I feel are important. Thank you to everybody who has supported me along the way, notably my university professors and peers, my work colleagues, my family/friends, and my mentors.
It’s no secret that I LOVE LEDs. It’s also no secret that I love 3D printing, Raspberry Pis, Laser Cutting, and woodworking (I just started a new job in an office with a full-featured wood shop). This project combines all of these things into a final product that I’m really proud of. I built it as a gift for my girlfriend, Leah. Taking inspiration from many commercial and DIY Word Clocks (example 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) that I’ve seen around the web, I built my own take on this unique timepiece. It uses words to spell out the time, occasionally displays “secret messages” in an accent color, and slowly cycles display colors for Leah’s name. First, here’s some pictures of the finished product (then I’ll go into more detail on the design process).