View my Now page to see what I'm up to.

Hey, you made it!

You've reached the personal website of Derek Hopper. I'm a full stack web developer with skills in a bunch of different areas.

If you're looking for more information about me, you can either peruse this website or check out my other profiles on the internet.

In case you were wondering

This website is intensely overengineered. The best engineers protect people from the overengineered. That means if someone came to me and asked me to build a personal website for them, I would never recommend what I did here.

However, building something new is a lot of fun. You get to learn a lot. You get to try new things you might not otherwise have the chance to work with.

That's what I did. I've never used tailwind.css previously. I've never had a personal website built with a Rails stack.

Tech Stack

  • Heroku
  • Rails 5.2
  • webpack + babel
  • turbolinks
  • stimulusjs
  • tailwind.css

Why I build

I don't think enough developers and product people ask themselves that question enough. Why do you build what you're building?

Is it money? I hope not. You'd be a sad soul after a few years and I don't think you'd be producing your best work. Worse yet, most products fail.

On the one hand, I know I build things because I love making. However, I don't think that answer digs deep enough. There must be a deeper reason. It's great to serve yourself, but being a self serving person doesn't get you far in life. There's a difference between watching out for yourself and being a generally selfish person.

That's why I feel there's no singular answer to this question. It's a sum of many parts.

I build for a few reasons. Here's what I think makes sense for me. Your answers will almost certainly be different.

Why do you wake up every day and build?

  • To provide for my family.
  • To find solutions to problems.
  • To learn.
  • To impact lives even though that impact may be small.
  • To be a part of something.

How do your answers compare to mine? If you haven't thought about this question much before, I encourage you to take time and do it. It's easy to get lost in the day to day and lose sight of why you're building.

If you're feeling burned out or you've lost your way and need someone to talk to, feel free to send me an email.