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a.k.a. “Stop Making New Year’s Resolutions And Just Do Something”

I’ve found that the new year is a great time to reflect. Not because it’s the end of one year or the beginning of another, but because everything seems to slow down around the same time. People go visit their families for the holidays, stores and offices close down, and you find yourself with some refreshing downtime before everything jumps back into motion. It’s quite nice, really.

This is also the time when people normally make resolutions for the new year — normally focusing on things like health/fitness, time management, and personal relationships. …

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Snapchat has been making somewhat of a Spectacle of itself lately. (no apologies for the pun. just roll with it.)

On Friday, the company announced that it was rebranding as Snap, Inc. (a camera company) and releasing a new hardware product called Spectacles. Go check it out if you haven’t seen it — it’s a pair of glasses that takes circular videos at the press of a button, and has an endearingly ridiculous, retro aesthetic to it.

Snap has had an interesting journey, and a value proposition that doesn’t make sense to most people: you take pictures and videos that…

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I’ve recently been spending a lot of time studying the creative process, and how to best inspire creativity in myself and others. This endeavor has led me into reading about things like psychology, design leadership, and interior space design.

A few days ago, I picked up the book 101 Things I Learned in Architecture School, thinking it would further educate me in space design and help inform the way I structure my working spaces. I didn’t realize how much more it would give me.

One of the biggest things I had struggled with as a UX designer learning about the…

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This is a transcribed version of the talk I gave at TEDxRaleigh in March of 2016. The full video of the talk can be found at

December 25th, 2002. It was Christmas Day and like any other ten-year-old kid, I was excited to rush down the stairs as soon as daybreak hit and see what was left under the tree. I got down, I was greeted by the lights, I saw the vibrantly colored boxes underneath — but one thing in particular caught my eye. Down under the left side of the tree where my gifts normally were, I saw this dark green, very impressive-looking three ring binder.

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Today, we’re proud to announce the release of DataMapper InFlight. Through this app, we allow drone users to autonomously collect geospatial imagery and provide the tools to inform critical decisions that can make or break a company. One day during the development process of DataMapper InFlight, I had an experience that fundamentally shifted the way I thought about the product we were making. I saw an opportunity to create more than just an app.

It was a clear and sunny day, and I was about to field test our app for the first time on the DJI Matrice 100. I…

About a week ago, Google announced the Pixel C. Immediately, it looked familiar. Isn’t this a lot like the Microsoft Surface that made its debut back in 2012? And is it another competitor to the iPad Pro, too? If this is a trend, was Microsoft the first to catch on?

Why is everyone suddenly putting keyboards on tablets and calling it a feature?

The idea behind these devices is that they’re “all-in-one.” You can use it like a laptop with the keyboard, or like a tablet with a stylus. The need for this is pretty clear: work is becoming increasingly…

Humanity has always depended on information. Invention is fueled by it, wars are fought with it, and many people spend their entire lives in search of it. Knowledge used to vary wildly between different parts of the world when broader communication networks hadn’t yet been established, making information the most valuable thing people could acquire.

Enter the modern world, and the story has changed completely. Information is now a commodity.

In this world, we can access near-infinite amounts of data on a whim with a tap of our finger. Great debates can be resolved in an instant just by typing…

Suppose you’ve just come up with your next great idea. What if you could revolutionize an entire industry by turning current ideas on their head? What if you could solve a problem that no one even realized they had?

What if your idea could change the world?

Well, we have good news: it can. But whatever idea you have, you’ll need to test it, or risk building something no one will use.

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The best way to test your idea is to develop a basic prototype of your vision. A prototype is basically just a stripped-down version of whatever you’re trying…

Ricky Hopper

Software engineer, designer, and product manager working to improve our interactions with technology. Currently writing 3D printer software at Formlabs.

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