Sarah-Jayne Blakemore: The mysterious workings of the adolescent brain

TEDGlobal 2012

Sarah-Jayne Blakemore: The mysterious workings of the adolescent brain


Why do teenagers seem so much more impulsive, so much less self-aware than grown-ups? Cognitive neuroscientist Sarah-Jayne Blakemore compares the prefrontal cortex in adolescents to that of adults, to show us how typically “teenage” behavior is caused by the growing and developing brain.

Susan Solomon: The promise of research with stem cells

TEDGlobal 2012

Susan Solomon: The promise of research with stem cells


Calling them "our bodies' own repair kits," Susan Solomon advocates research using lab-grown stem cells. By growing individual pluripotent stem cell lines, her team creates testbeds that could accelerate research into curing diseases -- and perhaps lead to individualized treatment, targeted not just to a particular disease but a particular person.

Jonathan Trent: Energy from floating algae pods

TEDGlobal 2012

Jonathan Trent: Energy from floating algae pods


Call it "fuel without fossils": Jonathan Trent is working on a plan to grow new biofuel by farming micro-algae in floating offshore pods that eat wastewater from cities. Hear his team's bold vision for Project OMEGA (Offshore Membrane Enclosures for Growing Algae) and how it might power the future.

Scott Fraser: Why eyewitnesses get it wrong

TEDxUSC

Scott Fraser: Why eyewitnesses get it wrong


Scott Fraser studies how humans remember crimes -- and bear witness to them. In this powerful talk, which focuses on a deadly shooting at sunset, he suggests that even close-up eyewitnesses to a crime can create "memories" they could not have seen. Why? Because the brain abhors a vacuum. Editor's note: In the original version of this talk, Scott Fraser misspoke about available footage of Two World Trade Center (Tower 2). The misstatement has been edited out for clarity.

Kent Larson: Brilliant designs to fit more people in every city

TEDxBoston 2012

Kent Larson: Brilliant designs to fit more people in every city


How can we fit more people into cities without overcrowding? Kent Larson shows off folding cars, quick-change apartments and other innovations that could make the city of the future work a lot like a small village of the past.

Beth Noveck: Demand a more open-source government

TEDGlobal 2012

Beth Noveck: Demand a more open-source government


What can governments learn from the open-data revolution? In this stirring talk, Beth Noveck, the former deputy CTO at the White House, shares a vision of practical openness -- connecting bureaucracies to citizens, sharing data, creating a truly participatory democracy. Imagine the "writable society" ...

Vikram Patel: Mental health for all by involving all

TEDGlobal 2012

Vikram Patel: Mental health for all by involving all


Nearly 450 million people are affected by mental illness worldwide. In wealthy nations, just half receive appropriate care, but in developing countries, close to 90 percent go untreated because psychiatrists are in such short supply. Vikram Patel outlines a highly promising approach -- training members of communities to give mental health interventions, empowering ordinary people to care for others.

Shyam Sankar: The rise of human-computer cooperation

TEDGlobal 2012

Shyam Sankar: The rise of human-computer cooperation


Brute computing force alone can’t solve the world’s problems. Data mining innovator Shyam Sankar explains why solving big problems (like catching terrorists or identifying huge hidden trends) is not a question of finding the right algorithm, but rather the right symbiotic relationship between computation and human creativity.

Robert Neuwirth: The power of the informal economy

TEDGlobal 2012

Robert Neuwirth: The power of the informal economy


Robert Neuwirth spent four years among the chaotic stalls of street markets, talking to pushcart hawkers and gray marketers, to study the remarkable "System D," the world's unlicensed economic network. Responsible for some 1.8 billion jobs, it's an economy of underappreciated power and scope.

Leslie T. Chang: The voices of China's workers

TEDGlobal 2012

Leslie T. Chang: The voices of China's workers


In the ongoing debate about globalization, what's been missing is the voices of workers -- the millions of people who migrate to factories in China and other emerging countries to make goods sold all over the world. Reporter Leslie T. Chang sought out women who work in one of China's booming megacities, and tells their stories.

Candy Chang: Before I die I want to...

TEDGlobal 2012

Candy Chang: Before I die I want to...


In her New Orleans neighborhood, artist and TED Fellow Candy Chang turned an abandoned house into a giant chalkboard asking a fill-in-the-blank question: “Before I die I want to ___.” Her neighbors' answers -- surprising, poignant, funny -- became an unexpected mirror for the community. (What's your answer?)

David Binder: The arts festival revolution

TEDGlobal 2012

David Binder: The arts festival revolution


David Binder is a major Broadway producer, but last summer he found himself in a small Australian neighborhood, watching locals dance and perform on their lawns -- and loving it. He shows us the new face of arts festivals, which break the boundary between audience and performer and help cities express themselves.

Antony Gormley: Sculpted space, within and without

TEDGlobal 2012

Antony Gormley: Sculpted space, within and without


Legendary sculptor Antony Gormley riffs on space and the human form. His works explore the interior space we feel within our own bodies -- and the exterior space we feel around us, knowing that we are just dots in space and time.

Timothy Prestero: Design for people, not awards

TEDxBoston 2012

Timothy Prestero: Design for people, not awards


Timothy Prestero thought he'd designed the perfect incubator for newborns in the developing world -- but his team learned a hard lesson when it failed to go into production. A manifesto on the importance of designing for real-world use, rather than accolades. (Filmed at TEDxBoston.)

Mark Forsyth: What's a snollygoster? A short lesson in political speak

TEDxHousesOfParliament

Mark Forsyth: What's a snollygoster? A short lesson in political speak


Most politicians choose their words carefully, to shape the reality they hope to create. But does it work? Etymologist Mark Forsyth shares a few entertaining word-origin stories from British and American history (for instance, did you ever wonder how George Washington became "president"?) and draws a surprising conclusion. (From TEDxHousesofParliament in London)

Ivan Krastev: Can democracy exist without trust?

TEDGlobal 2012

Ivan Krastev: Can democracy exist without trust?


It seems the more we know about how democracy works -- through government transparency, better media coverage, even new insights about our brains -- the less we trust democracy itself. Yet it's still, arguably, the best system of government available. As Ivan Krastev says, "What went right is also what went wrong." Can democracy survive?

Clay Shirky: How the Internet will (one day) transform government

TEDGlobal 2012

Clay Shirky: How the Internet will (one day) transform government


The open-source world has learned to deal with a flood of new, oftentimes divergent, ideas using hosting services like GitHub -- so why can’t governments? In this rousing talk Clay Shirky shows how democracies can take a lesson from the Internet, to be not just transparent but also to draw on the knowledge of all their citizens.

Caitria + Morgan O'Neill: How to step up in the face of disaster

TEDxBoston 2012

Caitria + Morgan O'Neill: How to step up in the face of disaster


After a natural disaster strikes, there’s only a tiny window of opportunity to rally effective recovery efforts before the world turns their attention elsewhere. Who should be in charge? When a freak tornado hit their hometown, sisters Caitria and Morgan O’Neill -- just 20 and 24 at the time -- took the reins and are now teaching others how to do the same. (Filmed at TEDxBoston.)

Jon Ronson: Strange answers to the psychopath test

TED2012

Jon Ronson: Strange answers to the psychopath test


Is there a definitive line that divides crazy from sane? With a hair-raising delivery, Jon Ronson, author of The Psychopath Test, illuminates the gray areas between the two. (With live-mixed sound by Julian Treasure and animation by Evan Grant.)

Hannah Fry: Is life really that complex?

TEDxUCL

Hannah Fry: Is life really that complex?


Can an algorithm forecast the site of the next riot? In this accessible talk, mathematician Hannah Fry shows how complex social behavior can be analyzed and perhaps predicted through analogies to natural phenomena, like the patterns of a leopard's spots or the distribution of predators and prey in the wild.

Scilla Elworthy: Fighting with nonviolence

TEDxExeter

Scilla Elworthy: Fighting with nonviolence


How do you deal with a bully without becoming a thug? In this wise and soulful talk, peace activist Scilla Elworthy maps out the skills we need -- as nations and individuals -- to fight extreme force without using force in return. To answer the question of why and how nonviolence works, she evokes historical heroes -- Aung San Suu Kyi, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela -- and the personal philosophies that powered their peaceful protests.

Lisa Kristine: Photos that bear witness to modern slavery

TEDxMaui

Lisa Kristine: Photos that bear witness to modern slavery


For the past two years, photographer Lisa Kristine has traveled the world, documenting the unbearably harsh realities of modern-day slavery. She shares hauntingly beautiful images -- miners in the Congo, brick layers in Nepal -- illuminating the plight of the 27 million souls enslaved worldwide. (Filmed at TEDxMaui)

Pam Warhurst: How we can eat our landscapes

TEDSalon London Spring 2012

Pam Warhurst: How we can eat our landscapes


What should a community do with its unused land? Plant food, of course. With energy and humor, Pam Warhurst tells at the TEDSalon the story of how she and a growing team of volunteers came together to turn plots of unused land into communal vegetable gardens, and to change the narrative of food in their community.

Bahia Shehab: A thousand times no

TEDGlobal 2012

Bahia Shehab: A thousand times no


Art historian Bahia Shehab has long been fascinated with the Arabic script for ‘no.’ When revolution swept through Egypt in 2011, she began spraying the image in the streets saying no to dictators, no to military rule and no to violence.

Kirby Ferguson: Embrace the remix

TEDGlobal 2012

Kirby Ferguson: Embrace the remix


Nothing is original, says Kirby Ferguson, creator of Everything is a Remix. From Bob Dylan to Steve Jobs, he says our most celebrated creators borrow, steal and transform.

Max Little: A test for Parkinson's with a phone call

TEDGlobal 2012

Max Little: A test for Parkinson's with a phone call


Parkinson’s disease affects 6.3 million people worldwide, causing weakness and tremors, but there's no objective way to detect it early on. Yet. Applied mathematician and TED Fellow Max Little is testing a simple, cheap tool that in trials is able to detect Parkinson's with 99 percent accuracy -- in a 30-second phone call.

Margaret Heffernan: Dare to disagree

TEDGlobal 2012

Margaret Heffernan: Dare to disagree


Most people instinctively avoid conflict, but as Margaret Heffernan shows us, good disagreement is central to progress. She illustrates (sometimes counterintuitively) how the best partners aren’t echo chambers -- and how great research teams, relationships and businesses allow people to deeply disagree.

Becci Manson: (Re)touching lives through photos

TEDGlobal 2012

Becci Manson: (Re)touching lives through photos


In the wake of the 2011 Japanese earthquake and tsunami, mixed into the wreckage were lost and damaged photos of families and loved ones. Photo retoucher Becci Manson, together with local volunteers and a global group of colleagues she recruited online, helped clean and fix them, restoring those memories to their owners.

Daphne Koller: What we're learning from online education

TEDGlobal 2012

Daphne Koller: What we're learning from online education


Daphne Koller is enticing top universities to put their most intriguing courses online for free -- not just as a service, but as a way to research how people learn. With Coursera (cofounded by Andrew Ng), each keystroke, quiz, peer-to-peer discussion and self-graded assignment builds an unprecedented pool of data on how knowledge is processed.

Stephen Ritz: A teacher growing green in the South Bronx

TEDxManhattan

Stephen Ritz: A teacher growing green in the South Bronx


A whirlwind of energy and ideas, Stephen Ritz is a teacher in New York's tough South Bronx, where he and his kids grow lush gardens for food, greenery -- and jobs. Just try to keep up with this New York treasure as he spins through the many, many ways there are to grow hope in a neighborhood many have written off, or in your own.