Jan. 6, 2022

Chuck’s Origin Story: Career Pivots, and Learning to Love Ember

After diving into Robbie’s backstory in episode 017, today we’re panning the camera to Chuck. If you’ve ever wondered how he ended up at Ship Shape and where Chuck first discovered the world of the web, today’s episode explores his digital origin story. 

Like Robbie, Chuck’s foray into software development began in Photoshop. In fact, for a period after graduating college, Chuck considered going to photography school. Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you ask Robbie), shelling out cash for grad school seemed daunting and impractical. So he stumbled into a startup instead. 

After gigs at multiple startups, MLMs, a national network, and a non-profit abroad, a new baby sent Chuck searching for something with fewer hours and more flexibility. Spoiler alert: he ended up at Ship Shape. 

In this episode, Robbie and Chuck discuss Chuck’s gradual love for Ember, the frameworks that shaped his career, the developers who impressed him, and Chuck’s ideas on the future of the web. 

Key Takeaways

  • [00:27] - A whiskey review. 
  • [08:41] - Where it all began for Chuck. 
  • [11:48] - Chuck’s foray into the digital space. 
  • [15:19] - Where Chuck went post-grad. 
  • [19:08] - A turning point in Chuck’s career. 
  • [21:27] - Why Chuck headed to Europe.
  • [23:14] - Chuck’s career with National Geographic and the software that shaped him. 
  • [29:33] - When Chuck met Ember.
  • [33:30] - Why Chuck left the startup world. 
  • [37:56] - How Chuck found Ship Shape. 
  • [46:22] - Where Chuck’s headed next. 
  • [48:30] - How to send suggestions our way and a brief chat on NFTs. 


[20:25] - “For me, and I think for a lot of people, jQuery was kind of the entryway into JavaScript programming.” ~ Chuck Carpenter

[39:01] - “What was the next rung on the career ladder? I decided that instead of more middle management, getting my hands dirty and building a business sounded pretty great, or at least worth a try. I needed to check that box off.” ~ Chuck Carpenter

[41:55] - “It feels like things are going in a direction, even if it’s not Next, where there’s more opinionation.” ~ Chuck Carpenter


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