Alison Gopnik: What do babies think?

TEDGlobal 2011

Alison Gopnik: What do babies think?

July 13, 2011


"Babies and young children are like the R&D division of the human species," says psychologist Alison Gopnik. Her research explores the sophisticated intelligence-gathering and decision-making that babies are really doing when they play.

Charles Hazlewood: Trusting the ensemble

TEDGlobal 2011

Charles Hazlewood: Trusting the ensemble

July 13, 2011


Conductor Charles Hazlewood talks about the role of trust in musical leadership -- then shows how it works, as he conducts the Scottish Ensemble onstage. He also shares clips from two musical projects: the opera "U-Carmen eKhayelitsha" and the ParaOrchestra.

Mike Biddle: We can recycle plastic

TEDGlobal 2011

Mike Biddle: We can recycle plastic

July 14, 2011


Less than 10% of plastic trash is recycled -- compared to almost 90% of metals -- because of the massively complicated problem of finding and sorting the different kinds. Frustrated by this waste, Mike Biddle has developed a cheap and incredibly energy efficient plant that can, and does, recycle any kind of plastic.

Graham Hill: Less stuff, more happiness

TED2011

Graham Hill: Less stuff, more happiness

March 1, 2011


Writer and designer Graham Hill asks: Can having less stuff, in less room, lead to more happiness? He makes the case for taking up less space, and lays out three rules for editing your life.

Christoph Adami: Finding life we can't imagine

TEDxUIUC

Christoph Adami: Finding life we can't imagine

February 19, 2011


How do we search for alien life if it's nothing like the life that we know? Christoph Adami shows how he uses his research into artificial life -- self-replicating computer programs -- to find a signature, a 'biomarker,' that is free of our preconceptions of what life is.

Yang Lan: The generation that's remaking China

TEDGlobal 2011

Yang Lan: The generation that's remaking China

July 13, 2011


Yang Lan, a journalist and entrepreneur who's been called "the Oprah of China," offers insight into the next generation of young Chinese citizens -- urban, connected (via microblogs) and alert to injustice.

Danielle de Niese: A flirtatious aria

TEDGlobal 2011

Danielle de Niese: A flirtatious aria

July 12, 2011


Can opera be ever-so-slightly sexy? The glorious soprano Danielle de Niese shows how, singing the flirty "Meine Lippen, sie küssen so heiss." Which, translated, means, as you might guess: "I kiss so hot." From Giuditta by Frans Lehár; accompanist: Ingrid Surgenor.

Ben Goldacre: Battling bad science

TEDGlobal 2011

Ben Goldacre: Battling bad science

July 13, 2011


Every day there are news reports of new health advice, but how can you know if they're right? Doctor and epidemiologist Ben Goldacre shows us, at high speed, the ways evidence can be distorted, from the blindingly obvious nutrition claims to the very subtle tricks of the pharmaceutical industry.

Jarreth Merz: Filming democracy in Ghana

TEDGlobal 2011

Jarreth Merz: Filming democracy in Ghana

July 14, 2011


Jarreth Merz, a Swiss-Ghanaian filmmaker, came to Ghana in 2008 to film the national elections. What he saw there taught him new lessons about democracy -- and about himself.

Geoff Mulgan: A short intro to the Studio School

TEDGlobal 2011

Geoff Mulgan: A short intro to the Studio School

July 12, 2011


Some kids learn by listening; others learn by doing. Geoff Mulgan gives a short introduction to the Studio School, a new kind of school in the UK where small teams of kids learn by working on projects that are, as Mulgan puts it, "for real."

Abraham Verghese: A doctor's touch

TEDGlobal 2011

Abraham Verghese: A doctor's touch

July 14, 2011


Modern medicine is in danger of losing a powerful, old-fashioned tool: human touch. Physician and writer Abraham Verghese describes our strange new world where patients are merely data points, and calls for a return to the traditional one-on-one physical exam.

Sunni Brown: Doodlers, unite!

TED2011

Sunni Brown: Doodlers, unite!

March 3, 2011


Studies show that sketching and doodling improve our comprehension -- and our creative thinking. So why do we still feel embarrassed when we're caught doodling in a meeting? Sunni Brown says: Doodlers, unite! She makes the case for unlocking your brain via pad and pen.

Elizabeth Murchison: Fighting a contagious cancer

TEDGlobal 2011

Elizabeth Murchison: Fighting a contagious cancer

July 14, 2011


What is killing the Tasmanian devil? A virulent cancer is infecting them by the thousands -- and unlike most cancers, it's contagious. Researcher Elizabeth Murchison tells us how she's fighting to save the Taz, and what she's learning about all cancers from this unusual strain. Contains disturbing images of facial cancer.

Amy Lockwood: Selling condoms in the Congo

TEDGlobal 2011

Amy Lockwood: Selling condoms in the Congo

July 14, 2011


HIV is a serious problem in the DR Congo, and aid agencies have flooded the country with free and cheap condoms. But few people are using them. Why? "Reformed marketer" Amy Lockwood offers a surprising answer that upends a traditional model of philanthropy. (Some NSFW images.)

Jean-Baptiste Michel + Erez Lieberman Aiden: What we learned from 5 million books

TEDxBoston 2011

Jean-Baptiste Michel + Erez Lieberman Aiden: What we learned from 5 million books

July 24, 2011


Have you played with Google Labs' Ngram Viewer? It's an addicting tool that lets you search for words and ideas in a database of 5 million books from across centuries. Erez Lieberman Aiden and Jean-Baptiste Michel show us how it works, and a few of the surprising things we can learn from 500 billion words. (Filmed at TEDxBoston.)

Niall Ferguson: The 6 killer apps of prosperity

TEDGlobal 2011

Niall Ferguson: The 6 killer apps of prosperity

July 14, 2011


Over the past few centuries, Western cultures have been very good at creating general prosperity for themselves. Historian Niall Ferguson asks: Why the West, and less so the rest? He suggests half a dozen big ideas from Western culture -- call them the 6 killer apps -- that promote wealth, stability and innovation. And in this new century, he says, these apps are all shareable.

Sasha Dichter: The Generosity Experiment

NextGen:Charity

Sasha Dichter: The Generosity Experiment

November 16, 2010


In this inspiring talk at the NextGen:Charity conference, Sasha Dichter of the Acumen Fund shares the results of his month-long "Generosity Experiment" where he said "yes" to every request for help.

Lauren Zalaznick: The conscience of television

TEDWomen 2010

Lauren Zalaznick: The conscience of television

December 3, 2010


TV executive Lauren Zalaznick thinks deeply about pop television. Sharing results of a bold study that tracks attitudes against TV ratings over five decades, she makes a case that television reflects who we truly are -- in ways we might not have expected.

Richard Resnick: Welcome to the genomic revolution

TEDxBoston 2011

Richard Resnick: Welcome to the genomic revolution

July 6, 2011


In this accessible talk from TEDxBoston, Richard Resnick shows how cheap and fast genome sequencing is about to turn health care (and insurance, and politics) upside down. (Filmed at TEDxBoston.)

Kate Hartman: The art of wearable communication

TED2011

Kate Hartman: The art of wearable communication

March 2, 2011


Artist Kate Hartman uses wearable electronics to explore how we communicate, with ourselves and with the world. In this quirky and thought-provoking talk, she shows the "Talk to Yourself Hat", the "Inflatable Heart", the "Glacier Embracing Suit", and other unexpected devices.

Misha Glenny: Hire the hackers!

TEDGlobal 2011

Misha Glenny: Hire the hackers!

July 13, 2011


Despite multibillion-dollar investments in cybersecurity, one of its root problems has been largely ignored: who are the people who write malicious code? Underworld investigator Misha Glenny profiles several convicted coders from around the world and reaches a startling conclusion.

Yasheng Huang: Does democracy stifle economic growth?

TEDGlobal 2011

Yasheng Huang: Does democracy stifle economic growth?

July 12, 2011


Economist Yasheng Huang compares China to India, and asks how China's authoritarian rule contributed to its astonishing economic growth -- leading to a big question: Is democracy actually holding India back? Huang's answer may surprise you.

Raghava KK: Shake up your story

TEDGlobal 2011

Raghava KK: Shake up your story

July 12, 2011


Artist Raghava KK demos his new children's book for iPad with a fun feature: when you shake it, the story -- and your perspective -- changes. In this charming short talk, he invites all of us to shake up our perspective a little bit.

Lee Cronin: Making matter come alive

TEDGlobal 2011

Lee Cronin: Making matter come alive

July 13, 2011


Before life existed on Earth, there was just matter, inorganic dead "stuff." How improbable is it that life arose? And -- could it use a different type of chemistry? Using an elegant definition of life (anything that can evolve), chemist Lee Cronin is exploring this question by attempting to create a fully inorganic cell using a "Lego kit" of inorganic molecules -- no carbon -- that can assemble, replicate and compete.

Edward Tenner: Unintended consequences

TED2011

Edward Tenner: Unintended consequences

March 2, 2011


Every new invention changes the world -- in ways both intentional and unexpected. Historian Edward Tenner tells stories that illustrate the under-appreciated gap between our ability to innovate and our ability to foresee the consequences.

Joan Halifax: Compassion and the true meaning of empathy

TEDWomen 2010

Joan Halifax: Compassion and the true meaning of empathy

December 3, 2010


Buddhist roshi Joan Halifax works with people at the last stage of life (in hospice and on death row). She shares what she's learned about compassion in the face of death and dying, and a deep insight into the nature of empathy.

Skylar Tibbits: Can we make things that make themselves?

TED2011

Skylar Tibbits: Can we make things that make themselves?

February 24, 2011


MIT researcher Skylar Tibbits works on self-assembly -- the idea that instead of building something (a chair, a skyscraper), we can create materials that build themselves, much the way a strand of DNA zips itself together. It's a big concept at early stages; Tibbits shows us three in-the-lab projects that hint at what a self-assembling future might look like.

Julia Bacha: Pay attention to nonviolence

TEDGlobal 2011

Julia Bacha: Pay attention to nonviolence

July 13, 2011


In 2003, the Palestinian village of Budrus mounted a 10-month-long nonviolent protest to stop a barrier being built across their olive groves. Did you hear about it? Didn't think so. Brazilian filmmaker Julia Bacha asks why we only pay attention to violence in the Israel-Palestine conflict -- and not to the nonviolent leaders who may one day bring peace.

Svante Pääbo: DNA clues to our inner neanderthal

TEDGlobal 2011

Svante Pääbo: DNA clues to our inner neanderthal

July 14, 2011


Sharing the results of a massive, worldwide study, geneticist Svante Pääbo shows the DNA proof that early humans mated with Neanderthals after we moved out of Africa. (Yes, many of us have Neanderthal DNA.) He also shows how a tiny bone from a baby finger was enough to identify a whole new humanoid species.

Dan Ariely: Beware conflicts of interest

TED2011

Dan Ariely: Beware conflicts of interest

March 1, 2011


In this short talk, psychologist Dan Ariely tells two personal stories that explore scientific conflict of interest: How the pursuit of knowledge and insight can be affected, consciously or not, by shortsighted personal goals. When we're thinking about the big questions, he reminds us, let's be aware of our all-too-human brains.