Eva Zeisel: The playful search for beauty

TED2001

Eva Zeisel: The playful search for beauty


The ceramics designer Eva Zeisel looks back on a 75-year career. What keeps her work as fresh today (her latest line debuted in 2008) as in 1926? Her sense of play and beauty, and her drive for adventure. Listen for stories from a rich, colorful life.

David Holt: The joyful tradition of mountain music

TED2004

David Holt: The joyful tradition of mountain music


Folk musician and storyteller David Holt plays the banjo and shares photographs and old wisdom from the Appalachian Mountains. He also demonstrates some unusual instruments like the mouth bow -- and a surprising electric drum kit he calls "thunderwear."

Nick Sears: Demo: The Orb

TED2007

Nick Sears: Demo: The Orb


Inventor Nick Sears demos the first generation of the Orb, a rotating persistence-of-vision display that creates glowing 3D images. A short, cool tale of invention.

Larry Burns: The future of cars

TED2005

Larry Burns: The future of cars


General Motors veep Larry Burns previews cool next-gen car design: sleek, customizable (and computer-enhanced) vehicles that run clean on hydrogen -- and pump energy back into the electrical grid when they're idle.

Philip Rosedale: Life in Second Life

Serious Play 2008

Philip Rosedale: Life in Second Life


Why build a virtual world? Philip Rosedale talks about the virtual society he founded, Second Life, and its underpinnings in human creativity. It's a place so different that anything could happen.

Richard Preston: The mysterious lives of giant trees

TED2008

Richard Preston: The mysterious lives of giant trees


Science writer Richard Preston talks about some of the most enormous living beings on the planet, the giant trees of the US Pacific Northwest. Growing from a tiny seed, they support vast ecosystems -- and are still, largely, a mystery.

Gregory Petsko: The coming neurological epidemic

TED2008

Gregory Petsko: The coming neurological epidemic


Biochemist Gregory Petsko makes a convincing argument that, in the next 50 years, we'll see an epidemic of neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's, as the world population ages. His solution: more research into the brain and its functions.

Andy Hobsbawm: Do the green thing

TED2008

Andy Hobsbawm: Do the green thing


Andy Hobsbawm shares a fresh ad campaign about going green -- and some of the fringe benefits.

Dan Barber: A foie gras parable

Taste3 2008

Dan Barber: A foie gras parable


At the Taste3 conference, chef Dan Barber tells the story of a small farm in Spain that has found a humane way to produce foie gras. Raising his geese in a natural environment, farmer Eduardo Sousa embodies the kind of food production Barber believes in.

Bill Joy: What I'm worried about, what I'm excited about

TED2006

Bill Joy: What I'm worried about, what I'm excited about


Technologist and futurist Bill Joy talks about several big worries for humanity -- and several big hopes in the fields of health, education and future tech.

George Smoot: The design of the universe

Serious Play 2008

George Smoot: The design of the universe


At Serious Play 2008, astrophysicist George Smoot shows stunning new images from deep-space surveys, and prods us to ponder how the cosmos -- with its giant webs of dark matter and mysterious gaping voids -- got built this way.

Franco Sacchi: A tour of Nollywood, Nigeria's booming film industry

TEDGlobal 2007

Franco Sacchi: A tour of Nollywood, Nigeria's booming film industry


Zambia-born filmmaker Franco Sacchi tours us through Nollywood, Nigeria's booming film industry (the world's 3rd largest). Guerrilla filmmaking and brilliance under pressure from crews that can shoot a full-length feature in a week.

Stewart Brand: The Long Now

TED2004

Stewart Brand: The Long Now


Stewart Brand works on the Clock of the Long Now, a timepiece that counts down the next 10,000 years. It's a beautiful project that asks us to think about the far, far future. Here, he discusses a tricky side problem with the Clock: Where can we put it?

Ursus Wehrli: Tidying up art

TED2006

Ursus Wehrli: Tidying up art


Ursus Wehrli shares his vision for a cleaner, more organized, tidier form of art -- by deconstructing the paintings of modern masters into their component pieces, sorted by color and size.

Charles Elachi: The story behind the Mars Rovers

Serious Play 2008

Charles Elachi: The story behind the Mars Rovers


At Serious Play 2008, Charles Elachi shares stories from NASA's legendary Jet Propulsion Lab -- including tales and video from the Mars Rover project.

Isaac Mizrahi: Fashion and creativity

TED2008

Isaac Mizrahi: Fashion and creativity


Fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi spins through a dizzying array of inspirations -- from '50s pinups to a fleeting glimpse of a woman on the street who makes him shout "Stop the cab!" Inside this rambling talk are real clues to living a happy, creative life.

Samantha Power: A complicated hero in the war on dictatorship

TED2008

Samantha Power: A complicated hero in the war on dictatorship


Would you negotiate with someone you knew to be evil, to save lives? Samantha Power tells a story of a complicated hero, Sergio Vieira de Mello. This UN diplomat walked a thin moral line, negotiating with the world's worst dictators to help their people survive crisis. It's a compelling story told with a fiery passion.

Lee Smolin: Science and democracy

TED2003

Lee Smolin: Science and democracy


Physicist Lee Smolin talks about how the scientific community works: as he puts it, "we fight and argue as hard as we can," but everyone accepts that the next generation of scientists will decide who's right. And, he says, that's how democracy works, too.

Luca Turin: The science of scent

TED2005

Luca Turin: The science of scent


What's the science behind a sublime perfume? With charm and precision, biophysicist Luca Turin explains the molecular makeup -- and the art -- of a scent.

Tim Brown: Tales of creativity and play

Serious Play 2008

Tim Brown: Tales of creativity and play


At the 2008 Serious Play conference, designer Tim Brown talks about the powerful relationship between creative thinking and play -- with many examples you can try at home (and one that maybe you shouldn't).

John Francis: Walk the earth ... my 17-year vow of silence

TED2008

John Francis: Walk the earth ... my 17-year vow of silence


For almost three decades, John Francis has been a planetwalker, traveling the globe by foot and sail with a message of environmental respect and responsibility (for 17 of those years without speaking). A funny, thoughtful talk with occasional banjo.

James Surowiecki: The power and the danger of online crowds

TED2005

James Surowiecki: The power and the danger of online crowds


James Surowiecki pinpoints the moment when social media became an equal player in the world of news-gathering: the 2005 tsunami, when YouTube video, blogs, IMs and txts carried the news -- and preserved moving personal stories from the tragedy.

Graham Hawkes: A flight through the ocean

TED2005

Graham Hawkes: A flight through the ocean


Graham Hawkes takes us aboard his graceful, winged submarines to the depths of planet Ocean (a.k.a. "Earth"). It's a deep blue world we landlubbers rarely see in 3D.

Newton Aduaka: The story of Ezra

TEDGlobal 2007

Newton Aduaka: The story of Ezra


Filmmaker Newton Aduaka shows clips from his powerful, lyrical feature film "Ezra," about a child soldier in Sierra Leone.

Zach Kaplan + Keith Schacht: Toys and materials from the future

TED2005

Zach Kaplan + Keith Schacht: Toys and materials from the future


The Inventables guys, Zach Kaplan and Keith Schacht, demo some amazing new materials and how we might use them. Look for squishy magnets, odor-detecting ink, "dry" liquid and a very surprising 10-foot pole.

Rives: A story of mixed emoticons

TED2008

Rives: A story of mixed emoticons


Rives tells a typographical fairy tale that's short and bittersweet ;)

Kristen Ashburn: The face of AIDS in Africa

TED2003

Kristen Ashburn: The face of AIDS in Africa


In this moving talk, documentary photographer Kristen Ashburn shares unforgettable images of the human impact of AIDS in Africa.

Paul MacCready: Nature vs. humans

TED1998

Paul MacCready: Nature vs. humans


In 1998, aircraft designer Paul MacCready looks at a planet on which humans have utterly dominated nature, and talks about what we all can do to preserve nature's balance. His contribution: solar planes, superefficient gliders and the electric car.

Dean Ornish: Healing through diet

TED2004

Dean Ornish: Healing through diet


Dean Ornish talks about simple, low-tech and low-cost ways to take advantage of the body's natural desire to heal itself.

Virginia Postrel: On glamour

TED2004

Virginia Postrel: On glamour


In a timely talk, cultural critic Virginia Postrel muses on the true meaning, and the powerful uses, of glamour -- which she defines as any calculated, carefully polished image designed to impress and persuade.