A few years ago I started investigating why I do the things I do.

At first I thought that all my side projects were a normal phenomenon, that everyone has them.
But it turns out that's not the case...
And certainly not to the extent that I do it.

With the help of a coach I discovered that all my side projects had more or less the same characteristics.

Astonishment is the base.
Childish curiosity to the unexpected with the purpose of connecting / activating / motivation / transforming.

  • Astonishment / Surprise / marvel
  • The beauty of everyday life
  • Process is key
  • Community

All this is powered by:

  • Art
  • Engineering
  • Playful

And it took some time before someone pointed out that the word APE could be created if I changed the order (Art, Playfulness & Engineering).

So what is the APE-method?

Art and Engineering are sort of self-explanatory (I can have a lively debate about what is art, but lets not get into that). Playful (playfulness) might some need some extra explanation:

playfulness The quality of being light-hearted or full of fun.

playful Done as a form of play rather than intended seriously, or wanting to have a good time and not feeling serious.

Fond of games and amusement; light-hearted.

The projects that I do in my spare time, the side projects all have this play element in them.
But this becomes especially clear when I am not the project-owner. The project could be very innovative and useful, but sometimes it was missing "something".
That is the element that makes me happy, the play, the humor, the grin on your face. These are the elements that can always be found in my own projects. And now that I am aware of it, they appear in every assignment/project that I have (enough) influence on.


When the three elements come together (like in a Venn-diagram), that's where the magic happens 🦄.
Don't get me wrong: only art would fascinates me and I get excited about all fascinating engineering currently happening!

But I really belief the most exciting innovations will happen when we use the APE-method.

On-line, off-line and playful!