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phoebusg's avatar

What are some of your favorite TED talks, why?

Asked by phoebusg (5230points) September 17th, 2010

TED refers to Technology Entertainment and Design: http://www.ted.com/

Choose your favorite talks. Link or name the talk(s). Feel free to describe ideas from the talks, what they mean to you and so forth.

Looking forward to your answers :)

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16 Answers

timtrueman's avatar

I got this one…

I’ll just start off with three of my absolute favorites:
Joshua Klein on the intelligence of crows
J.J. Abrams’ mystery box
Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity

Aimee Mullins is an incredible awesome and inspiring individual who doesn’t seem disabled, technically is but really should be called super-abled since she’s better than non-disabled people:
Aimee Mullins on running
Aimee Mullins: Prosthetic aesthetics
Aimee Mullins: The opportunity of adversity

This is probably one of the top TED talks across everyone if I had to guess:
Elizabeth Gilbert on genius

Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, talks about his grandparents:
Jeff Bezos: Gifts vs choices

Steve Jobs in a talk very different from his keynotes:
Steve Jobs: How to live before you die

Here’s five more:
Derek Sivers keep your goals to yourself
Richard St John’s 8 secrets of success
Dan Meyer: Math curriculum makeover
Dan Barber: How I fell in love with a fish
Bill Gates on energy: Innovating to zero!
Richard Dawkins on militant atheism

These guys are insane. Swimming at the north pole?
Ueli Gegenschatz: Extreme wingsuit jumping
Lewis Pugh swims the north pole
Lewis Pugh’s mind shifting Mt. Everest swim

You can tell I’m really into science with these:
Nathan Myhrvold: Could this laser zap malaria?
Burt Rutan sees the future of space
Stephen Wolfram: Computing a theory of everything
Bonnie Bassler on how bacteria communicate
Brian Cox: What went wrong at the LHC

An interesting departure from the norm; a TED debate!
Does the world need nuclear energy?

Hilarious talks:
Alexis Ohanian: how to make a splash in social media
Malcolm Gladwell on spaghetti sauce
Rives on 4AM
Lies, damned lies and statistics about TED talks
Einstein the parrot talks and squawks
Julia Sweeney has the talk
Ze Frank’s nerdcore comedy

TED’s curator Chris Anderson gave this recent and inspiring talk on the power of video to change the world.

Not a TED talk but I couldn’t find this for a year because I was searching TED, not YouTube: Clay Shirky on Love, Internet-style

I know I’m missing quite a few of my favorites—too bad I haven’t seen every single TED yet…

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I love this one by Emmanuel Jal from the frontlines of the Darfur conflict.

cockswain's avatar

Holy crap @timtrueman, you weren’t kidding when you said you’ve got that one. I’m an engineer and only heard of TED talks for the first time last week. I think I’m going to watch all of those over the next couple weeks. Thanks.

Carly's avatar

@hawaii_jake , I didn’t know Emmanuel Jal was on TED. I met him when he came to my school during our Pan Africa Conference. :)
– he has a good book, too.

I personally like anything with Sir Ken Robinson because I’m interested in innovative development ideas in Education.

and @timtrueman I’m not at all surprised that you like TED.

fundevogel's avatar

Vilayanur Ramachandran: A journey to the center of your mind – he’s my favorite living scientist
Mary Roach: 10 things you didn’t know about orgasm – I’ve made my friends watch this one

I also love Sarah Silverman’s comments about being rejected by TED.

absalom's avatar

@timtrueman: Seriously excellent recommendations. Thank you!

DrasticDreamer's avatar

@timtrueman Agreed. I sat here watching a lot of those talks for a really long time. Great list.

ratboy's avatar

It would probably be Sarah Silverman’s, had the hypocritical dickwads not refused to post it.

MacBean's avatar

My favorite is JJ fucking Abrams because I’ve always really really really disliked him but I was never able to explain why to people. Then I watched his TED talk and he completely explained it for me. While actually amusing me enough every once in a while to make me not want to punch him in his stupid face.

I’m not usually such an angry person. I promise.

Carly's avatar

My friend recommends this one for anything creative wise.

cockswain's avatar

Just watched this one with Salman Khan of khanacademy.org. I watch the videos on khanacademy regularly, and I’m very pleased to see him getting the attention he deserves. Bill Gates is a huge fan of him, and gets up to talk with Khan at the end of the TED talk.

Basically Khan has an amazing vision to globalize far more effective education for everyone through technology. I highly recommend you watch his videos. He’ll teach you calculus, economics, physics, or organic chemistry faster than you probably would have learned them before.

My daughter is 12, and I show her the relevant videos to her subjects in school.

phoebusg's avatar

Cheers @cockswain—I watch all TED vids, but will definitely check out Khan, it’s also in my things to do (contributing to a more accessible education).

iamthemob's avatar

@cockswain – why haven’t I heard of that?

I am really beginning to think that the internet is levying it’s gaze at higher education and challenging “I’m coming for you…”

Which is FANTASTIC.

cockswain's avatar

Did you watch the talk? I think he’s an amazing guy. Gave up being a hedge fund manager to pursue his vision.

iamthemob's avatar

I haven’t yet – I do now have the page bookmarked. ;-)

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