Being at N*able, I get the chance to listen Peter speak to a variety of audiences and events. From internal events, customer meetings to student conferences like typoday. I would have heard him say some of these things so many times, that I could probably give a word-to-word recitation of his speeches. Typoday was different in its own sense, as I was able to see Peter's empathy for design students and most importantly academics. He didn't play the role of a technology prophet, casting the developments in technology that will affect designers, but rather spoke on the intangible traits needed to be a creative.
Typoday 2017 was a typography conference organized by the University of Moratuwa Department of Integrated Design. It was the first of kind in Sri Lanka, as it was the first opportunity for design-nerds to get together and dive into the nerdiest of design elements; typography.
Peter's keynote orbited around a single concept; what it takes to be creative, and how our current education system was the worst incubator for creativity. The current education system we inherited from the brits, a system intended to churn out employees to fuel the industrial machine. This was in fact what led to the creation of the self-centered "career oriented" employee we have now. This deters a creative culture, as creativity requires collaboration. He pointed out this is why during pre-colonial times we have been able to create marvelous works of art, architecture and technology, because community was at the centre of importance, not the individual.
He took the example of his own life, and how the unstructured freedom he had when growing up had an impact in expanding his creative freedom. having heard this quite a number of times, I now start to see how it's true not just for Peter, but for other creative types.
Creativity happens when you give yourself to experiences outside your immediate mental periphery. And listening to peter speak is exactly just that.