November 25, 2018
This post is part of a new series by Product Hunt, Makers’ Stories, highlighting unique products and the people behind them from across the world.
Charlotte Dann is the maker of Hexatope, a system that allows you to design your own unique jewellery using intuitive interaction with a hexagonal grid. She has been coding since her school days in 2006 and has an MA in Computational Design from Goldsmiths.
Hexatope is a union of my two passions: jewelry design and programming. It’s an app that makes it easy for you to design your own jewelry online.
I love that little ‘aha’ moment you get when you’re really in the flow of something and think, “Wow I can actually do this, I’m being creative!”. I wanted to give that feeling to people who don’t naturally think of themselves as designers, so I started working on Hexatope.
I first started building when I was 14. I really wanted to make jewelry, but didn’t have any resources or skills. I found some YouTube tutorials for making chainmail that only required garden wire, a drill, wire cutters, and pliers.
I spent a whole summer making jump rings by hand and weaving them together. It was a revelation to be able to make something physical from such raw materials that actually looked good.
Don’t try to learn things alone. So many areas of tech are mind-boggling and intimidating — it’s so easy to get lost searching for the ‘right thing’ to learn or bogged down with intensive courses.
A great place to dip your toe in is at meetups and hackathons. Hackathons are welcoming to any skillset. Teams need non-coders too, and they’re very open places for you to learn from other people, make like-minded friends, and get a greater context for the type of things you’re interested in learning.
I only read things that are going to make me think differently, otherwise what’s the point? So I’d have to go for the last book I read — Grit by Angela Duckworth. It’s about how grit (perseverance/resilience) is the most important trait for long-term success, far more than skill or intelligence.
It’s made me think a lot about my upbringing and the focus we put on certain personality traits throughout adolescence. It also made me analyze my flaws as a business person — I’ve always thought myself passionate and determined but now realize I’m not actually very gritty and that that will hold me back unless I internalize it and work on it.
Take a shower, have a glass of water, go for a walk, or cook a meal. I always feel so much better when my self-care basics are covered, then if I’m still low I’ll ring a friend to talk through the problem and how to solve it.
If I’m still not motivated after that, I know I’m not working on the right thing.
I was such a puzzle nerd and I still haven’t got over it. Yoyos, Rubik’s cubes, jigsaw puzzles… I love it all.
I’m worried we’ll go down a path and not realize it’s the wrong one until it’s a decade too late. I’ve watched too many Sci-Fi movies to believe we won’t massively mess up the mass assimilation of AI.
Hell yes. I used to be so afraid of change but then I started traveling solo and now the excitement of adventure royally trumps the fear. I like making gains, and Mars is a pretty big gain.
No mouth 😶. So understated, so humble, so forgiving.
September 18, 2018