Creative Mornings Nashville with Parker Gates

On a recent and wonderful Creative Morning, I had the pleasure of scribing for my good buddy, Parker Gates in the stoke.d studio.

In front of 100+ members of Nashville's creative community gathered at The Skillery, Parker presented on design thinking—that amorphous, misunderstood, and mystical process of exploring and understanding people and problems in order to create effective solutions.


Creative Mornings Nashville

Parker Gates is a co-founder of stoke.d, a human-centered design practice.

Stoke.d focuses on education, and regularly partners with global organizations in ongoing projects. He also teaches Design Thinking at the at Stanford University.

Parker lives in Nashville, Tennessee, where he helps run an experiment in collaborative space, called stoke.d studio.

more at: | @stokedproject

TEDxNashville 2014 : Going to Mars, Ending Slavery on Earth, and Fighting for a Dignified Death.

This was Nashville's sixth TEDx event, our locally organized, independent instance of the decades-old TED events.

“TEDxNashville crackles with bright ideas and emotion” as speakers and performers played a sold out crowd of about 1,800 inside the Tennessee Performing Arts Center.

Alphachimp's Peter Durand was on stage for the sixth year to capture these ideas worth sharing. Speakers included political activist John Jay Hooker, entrepreneur Turner Nashe, NASA manager Chris Crumbly, End Slavery Tennessee's Derri Smith, Tulane University's Joel Dinerstein and other impressive speakers

For more detail, read this article by Tony Gonzalez writing for The Tennessean with some behind the scenes photos of artist and curator Sally Taylor, Tulane "professor of cool" Joel Dinerstein, and emcee Eddie George.

More information at:

A Visual Summary

Facebook's 5th Annual Compassion Research Day

Alphachimp spent a fascinating day, scribing for and learning about Facebook's research on encouraging people to resolve conflicts and reach out to friends in need.

Speakers pose with Alphachimp's artwork created live from their content.

Speakers pose with Alphachimp's artwork created live from their content.

Facebook has partnered with some amazing experts in human interaction, developmental psychology, emotion science, and evolutionary theory to help people have more meaningful and authentic dialogue and to resolve disputes that might arise.

In line with the mission and core values of Facebook's Compassion team, this public event shares the team's research questions, specifically: How does the perception of a hurtful post by a viewer often widely varies from the intent behind it?

In the words of Dalai Lama himself:

Experience has shown me that the greatest inner tranquillity comes from developing love and compassion. The more we care for the happiness of others, the greater is our own sense of well-being. Cultivating a close, warm-hearted feeling for others automatically puts the mind at ease. It helps remove our fears and insecurities and gives us strength to face obstacles — it is the ultimate source of success in life.

The organizers write: “We are passionate about helping people cultivate and express this compassion in interactions both on and off Facebook, and we are honored to have the opportunity share what we've learned.”

Learn more about Facebook's research on prevention of bullying, self-harm, and dangerous speech at:


PopTech 2014: A Decade of Documenting Rebel Lions

PopTech is a unique gathering of brainiacs, maniacs, rebels, spectacles, and indefinable superheroes. This year, the 18th annual conference was hosted by John Maeda, formerly of MIT and RISD, and truly a rebel in the zone of graphic design, computer science, art, education, and leadership. 

PopTech 18: Rebellion

PHOTO by Michael Duarte

PHOTO by Michael Duarte

And, 2014 was Alphachimp's 10th year to capture ideas graphically.

Traditionally, Alphachimp's founder Peter Durand creates paintings and drawings for each speaker using acrylic, oil pastel, Sumi ink, brushes and charcoal.

For the 10-year anniversary, however, Durand went digital. He served as an electric scribe for each of the 20+ presenters and performers, working in real-time on a large Wacom Cintiq 22HD tablet (think of an iPad the size of a suitcase).

Peter describes his first PopTech experience:

When I was first invited to scribe in 2004, I was standing in Radio Shack, shopping for cutting edge mobile technology: a new Motorola Razor cellphone.

The guy on the phone was Andrew Zolli. I was busy and distracted, but the guy was so excited and convincing, so I said yes.

Before I arrived, I thought PopTech was going to be another typical business conference. I remember listening to the first few speakers and having the same reaction as any first-timer:

‘Whoa... this is waaaay more than I expected.’
Along with the excitement of traveling with PopTech to events in Kenya and Iceland, my greatest pleasure has been to be involved with the Fellows Programs, working with social entrepreneurs and scientists right at the tipping point of their careers.
Every year, to my great relief, I have been shocked and honored to be invited back to witness brilliant people bring ground-breaking ideas to life.
View a 10-year visual catalog of PopTech Speaker Art  by Alphachimp on   Flickr  .

View a 10-year visual catalog of PopTech Speaker Art by Alphachimp on Flickr.

Dangerous Ideas at Ciudad de las Ideas 2013

Ciudad Candid Photo

Held annually in Puebla, Mexico, La Ciudad de las Ideas (CDI) is an “International Brilliant Minds Festival”, unique in its genre and created by the polymath Dr. Andrés Roemer, whose purpose is to empower citizens and present the most provocative and innovative ideas in sciencetechnologyartdesignpoliticseducationculturebusinessentertainment and other areas of knowledge. 

Alphachimp's Peter Durand produced individual painting and drawings for each artist, scientist, leader, performer and "Gifted Citizen" who shared their dreams with us on stage.

See artwork on Flickr:

Ciudad Candid Photo

Ciudad Candid Photo

Ciudad Candid Photo

Ciudad Candid Photo

Ciudad Candid Photo

More photos and all of the speaker posters:


TEDx Nashville 2013 — Next

On Saturday, April 6, 2013TEDxNashville hosted its fourth annual event titled "Next" at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. Distinguished leaders in technology, entertainment, design, science, art, education, government, public policy, healthcare and other areas will share their remarkable thoughts and ideas focused on creating positive changes in our society. 

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AgeLab and Disruptive Demographics

Aging is a disruptive force in many countries and economies. However, global aging is not simply a story of ‘more.’ The new disruptive demographics of aging is not your grandfather's old age.

In 1900, life expectancy for much of the industrialized world was under 50. Today, living well into one's 70s, 80s and beyond can be expected. How will we spend and make the most of our 30-year longevity bonus?

These new demographics require a radical new view of the changing definition of "old age" and the impact upon society, business strategy and innovation.

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