For quite some time now, I’ve been accumulating a list of TEDTalks that I wanted to do posts about. Unfortunately, I think the list is growing “out of control.” As such, I thought I would just do a catch-all post to cover some of the more under-discussed TEDTalks. If you’re unfamiliar with TEDTalks, I highly recommend checking out the list of the 20 most-watched TEDTalks. There are some really good topics there. In previous posts, I have discussed other TEDTalks (Mass Collaboration Can Change the World), and I’m likely to talk about them again in the future. Without further adieu, here are some of the TEDTalks that I think are worth a gander:
Ron Gutman: The hidden power of smiling – This one was recommended to me by a good friend of mine, likely because of my inclination for a positive disposition about life. There were some interesting statistics about smiling (and health). I highly recommend this to anyone, but especially to those who would rather be gloomy.
Ric Elias: Three things I learned while my plane crashed – This is a talk I learned of by following the TED Blog. It was given by one of the passengers on-board the infamous US Airways Flight 1549 (the one that landed in the Hudson). Not only was this passenger on-board, he had a front row seat to what was going on as he was in seat 1A. I very much enjoyed his talk. I think my favorite line from his talk: “I’m a collector of bad wines.” If you don’t quite get what he means by this, I’d watch the video.
Hans Rolling: No more boring data – As the top comment on the video laments: “Why doesn’t this have more views than Lady Gaga?” Given that there are many ways of learning, I think it’s important that data be represented in many fashions. Rolling has, really, made data interesting (to those who would have otherwise not thought so) and even for those who think that numbers are interesting all by themselves. In an updating post about who I’m following on Twitter, you’ll notice a number of additions of people who are focused on transforming data in chart/graph/etc. form.
Salman Khan: Let’s use video to reinvent education – I think I was watching Stephen Colbert one night and one of his guests was Salman Khan. I was amazed by what this one guy had put together from simply starting with the intention to help his cousins with mathematics. There are now thousands and thousands of videos teaching students around the world about a range of subjects from the French Revolution to calculus.
Sir Ken Robinson: Bring on the learning revolution! – I just had to include this follow-up to one of the most famous TEDTalks. I must say, I am surprised that this video has only garnered about a quarter million views in a year’s time, while his first TEDTalk has more than 2.5 million views.
Charles Limb: Your brain on improv – Somewhere along the way, I developed an affinity for the brain and brain science (or neuroscience). Things that have to do with the brain fascinate me. Maybe it’s the trillions of intricacies to the brain (I’m a details/systems-guy, remember?) In this video, Limb shows the neuroscience behind creativity.
Julian Assange: Why the world needs WikiLeaks – I’m not necessarily endorsing WikiLeaks (one way or the other), but I believe it can be useful to seek to understand the viewpoint or reasons why someone does something.
John Hunter on the World Peace Game – With a title like this, how could I not include this in a list of TEDTalks to watch? I’m in favor of most things that seek to unify the world in peace. In this video, Hunter explains how he attempts to get his 4th-graders to solve the problems of the world. I think this is superbly brilliant! Most of the time, children haven’t been socialized into ways of thinking that can become rigid. It’s useful to allow them to use their unencumbered imagination to work through some of these complicated issues.
There are many more TEDTalks that are worth talking about (both under-viewed and adequately viewed). I invite you to share with us some of your favorite TEDTalks in the comments section.