Hi! I’m David Simpson. I’m indie filmmaker, designer, university lecturer, TEDxOsaka co-founder, and AI enthusiast currently residing in beautiful Osaka, Japan. I am orignally from Canada.

In the past, I co-founded TEDxOsaka and made short films, which led me to graduate school. In 2014 I completed my Masters of Arts Film Directing & Design Research at the University of Edinburgh in the U.K.

My background in film directing rooted in design research has created a foundation of thinking and problem-solving that I continue to build on. Filmmaking is a methodical, step-by-step process. It’s a great framework to solve design problems across many fields. Ultimately, design is about learning problem-solving and applying those skills to whatever you’re looking at.

The project I'm the most proud of is my short film Konoyo which was created with a design thinking approach. Also, Sushi 2020, which helps improve the process of locating and dining at sushi restaurants for tourists during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

I’m currently focusing my user experience design skills on the development of conversational agents (chatbots). Also, experimenting with Python to serve as a stepping-stone to chat-based application development (natural language processing).

Finally, I would like to get more involved in design & develpment  community through writing, speaking, mentoring and experimentation.



It’s a great time for people that build stuff. There are a ton of awesome tools available to help you be more productive as a developer or designer. Here are the tools I use at the moment, and what I use them for:



Several years ago I started using Photoshop and is the tool that helped me become a designer, so it will always have a place in my heart. However, when I’m designing an interface, I use Sketch. Sketch is really fast and intuitive when it comes to designing user interfaces for apps and websites.



When I need to quickly test a static user flow on a device, I upload all my app screens to InVision and run it on my phone or share it with the other people involved in the project. 


Python, HTML, CSS

At the moment experimenting with Python to serve as a stepping-stone to chat-based application development (natural language processing). Also, knowledge of HTML, CSS, is great for prototyping front-end user experience concepts in Django. 



Atom is a free and open-source text and source code editor. Works straight out of the box but it also to reconfigure to your liking. I use this tool to write all my code whether is  Python, HTML, CSS or other supported language..



GitHub allows me to keep my software revisions straight, storing the modifications in a central repository. This allows developers to easily collaborate, as they can download a new version of the software, make changes, and upload the newest revision. 



Listed below are some of my favorite design and development books that cut to the chase and are filled with lots of insightful advice on the craft:

  • Natural Language Processing with Python – Analyzing Text with the Natural Language Toolkit by Steven Bird, Ewan Klein, and Edward Loper
  • Designing Bots Creating Conversational Experiences by Amir Shevat
  • Business Model Generation by Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur
  • The Elements of User Design by Jesse James Garrett
  • Don't Make Me Think by Steve Krug
  • Hooked by Nir Eyal



If you'd like to get in touch, you can send me an email directly at themaker@illectricsheep.com or contact me on Twitter or Instagram.