TED Talks

TED logo

Some of my better-informed friends and colleagues will perhaps think I’ve been sleeping, but thanks to one of those friends and colleagues – lawyer, blogger, business strategist and all-round provocative thinker Noric Dilanchian – I’ve just discovered the TED website and general TED phenomenon.

TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from those three worlds. … It’s a community welcoming people from every discipline and culture who have just two things in common: they seek a deeper understanding of the world, and they hope to turn that understanding into a better future for us all.

You can join TED.com for free and there are gradations of memberships with a dollar figure attached. As part of the free membership you are provided, in good social networking style, with an online profile. I’ve just used up more of the morning than I care to think in filling out my profile: I have to say, it’s been a worthwhile exercise, for example in helping me identify what’s important to me about my business activities.

There are some absolutely fascinating, stimulating, thought-provoking Talks on the site and I intend to feature a TED talk here regularly. The first “talk” below is in the language of music: the avant-garde string quartet Ethel performs “Blue Room”.

Des Walsh

Business coach and digital entrepreneur. With coach training from Coachville.com and its Graduate School of Coaching, and a founding member of the International Association of Coaching, Des has been coaching business owners and entrepreneurs for the past 20 years. Over the same period he has also been actively engaged in promoting the business opportunities of the digital economy. He is a certified Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) coach, and a certified specialist in social media strategy and affiliate marketing.

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  1. TED – for me, an extremely addictive site. After sorting through the dross at YouTube, TED reminds us that video-on-demand can be stunningly seductive. I recommend you watch the Jimmy Wales vid.

    *waves* saw you on Facebook and thought I’d bop on in, see how you were doing, 🙂 *waves again*

  2. Hi Des,

    I have seen and reviewed about 30 of the 120 or so videos at TED. Each one is around 18-20 minutes and mostly the presenters are subject matter experts with a grand passion. Typically you would pay big $ to see most of the presenters at a specialised conference.

    Highlights for me are the 2 Hans Rosling videos / and the Development ones on the Africa and Green Futures theme/s but really they are all good.

    OK – maybe there is one which I think is completely out of place – Tony Robbins. There is no doubt Robbins is a clever presenter but it is a perhaps a measure of the very high quality of the other talks that he rates very low in the overall mix. Personally I don’t think much of his subject matter but readers puzzling over why he has an audience might like that one. Having the 18min version definitely beats paying for one of his slick and expensive conferences – but enough said on that point.

    Majora Carter on local environment / community and Eva Vertes on medicine (she was 19 when she presented) are both outstanding high impact presentations.

    Sir Ken Robinson on creativity in education which I have written extensively about. It is probably the best known one and exceptional.

    The TED insights have been so useful that I have created a special TED category on my blog – see the website link which should take you to that category.

    Especially these three posts which have been very well received.
    3 – Creative Visualisation of numbers
    2 – Creativity & Innovation Linked
    1 – Spaghetti Sauce & other chunky content

    Spaghetti sauce refers to a famous and wonderful presentation by Malcolm (Tipping Point) Gladwell on marketing excellence.

    Another amazing thing about TED is that the videos have all been released on Creative Commons license and so anyone is free to use the content and in fact encouraged to do so.

    See http://www.ted.com/index.php/pages/view/id/21 which outlines the conditions and mission of the TED site.

    So far I have compiled 2GB worth of videos on CD/DVD’s to make it easy for those with data caps / download logistics.

    I have also enjoyed reading Noric’s insights on some of the same TED content at the very fine dilanchian.com.au site.

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