The large got larger. The small got smaller. The weird got weirder. When you look at sporting achievements over the last decades, it seems like humans have gotten faster, better and stronger in nearly every way. Yet as David Epstein points out in this delightfully counter-intuitive talk, we might want to lay off the self-congratulation. Many factors are at play in shattering athletic records, and the development of our natural talents is just one of them.
TED talk, 14:53
posted by srboisvert
on May 1, 2014 -
Let me tell you a story. I was at a presentation that a friend, an Astrophysicist, gave to a potential donor ... After the talk the sponsor said to him, “you know what, I’m gonna pass because I just don’t feel inspired… you should be more like Malcolm Gladwell” ...
So I ask the question: does TED epitomize a situation where ... a scientist... is told that their work is not worthy of support, because the public doesn't feel good listening to them?
I submit that Astrophysics run on the model of American Idol is a recipe for civilizational disaster.
Benjamin H. Bratton (Dept. of Visual Arts
, UC San Diego) uses a TEDx
talk to critique the medium of the TED talk itself. Does TED
—"weird, inadequate and symptomatic"—encapsulate the twenty-first century's inability to face the challenges of the future in any honest way?
posted by Sonny Jim
on Dec 30, 2013 -
"I want to see the world. Follow a map to its edges, and keep going. Forgo the plans. Trust my instincts. Let curiosity be my guide.
I want to change hemispheres and sleep with unfamiliar stars and let the journey unfold before me." Maptia
is on a mission to gather first-person stories from travelers, "to create the most inspirational map in the world." [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Nov 12, 2013 -
Caroline Heldman on The Sexy Lie
In the 5 minutes that I've been giving this talk, on average the women in this audience have engaged in habitual body monitoring 10 times. That is every 30 seconds...It simply takes up mental space that can be better used completing math tests, completing your homework. It just sucks our cognitive functioning.
posted by hindmost
on Oct 30, 2013 -
Accidental Rewilding - In places once thick with farms and cities, human dispossession and war has cleared the ground for nature to return
The forest had entered a cycle Tomaž had not seen before, in which many of the giants had perished. Some had died where they stood, and remained upright, reamed with beetle and woodpecker holes, sprouting hoof fungus and razor strop. They looked as if a whisper of wind could blow them down. Others now stretched across the rocks and craters, sometimes blocking our path, sometimes suspended above our heads. Among the trunks lying on the ground, some were so thick that I could scarcely see over them. Where they had fallen, thickets of saplings crowded into the light. Seeing the profusion of fungus and insect life the dead wood harboured, I was reminded of the old ecologists’ aphorism: there is more life in dead trees than there is in living trees. The tidy-minded forestry so many nations practise deprives many species of their habitats.
by George Monbiot [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Oct 25, 2013 -
Clinical psychologist Meg Jay has a bold message
for twentysomethings: Contrary to popular belief, your 20s are not a throwaway decade. In this provocative talk, Jay says that just because marriage, work and kids are happening later in life, doesn’t mean you can’t start planning now. She gives 3 pieces of advice for how twentysomethings can re-claim adulthood in the defining decade of their lives.
(copied from description on TED website
). [more inside]
posted by myriad gantry
on May 17, 2013 -
In the Shadow of Wounded Knee.
Along the southwestern border of South Dakota is one of the most poverty-stricken places in the United States—the Pine Ridge Reservation, home of the Oglala Lakota people. After 150 years of broken promises, they are still nurturing their tribal customs, language and beliefs. Via [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Oct 25, 2012 -
(Transformations, Emotional Deconstruction) is a large, wall-based installation created by Sean Hathaway
, consisting of an array of 80 Teddy Ruxpin dolls that speak emotional content gathered from the web via synthetic speech with animated mouths.
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Jun 28, 2012 -
Fuck You: A Magazine of the Arts
was a literary magazine founded in 1962 by Ed Sanders, a poet later co-founded The Fugs
. Its credo was "I'll print anything", and Sanders produced thirteen issues on a mimeograph machine from 1962 to 1965. Issues included works by Tuli Kupferberg, Charles Olson, Peter Orlovsky, Philip Whalen, Allen Ginsberg, Frank O'Hara, Julian Beck, Herbert Huncke, Norman Mailer, Gary Snyder, Diane DiPrima, William S. Burroughs, Leroi Jones, Gregory Corso, Robert Creeley, Michael McClure, Ted Berrigan, Joe Brainard, and Andy Warhol. - wikipedia.
With a helpful index
. [more inside]
posted by latkes
on Apr 12, 2012 -
"Smart talk has never been such a valuable commodity. It’s spawned conferences like TED, Davos, and now a slew of upstart competitors. It has made the eighteen‑minute TED lecture a viral online phenomenon. But are we running out of things to say
posted by vidur
on Feb 29, 2012 -
A "smartpill" is a type of endoscopic capsule
camera that creates a video of the digestive process from entrance to exit.
For Stefani Bardin's "M2A Project" film for TEDxManhattan, two subjects swallowed a smartpill capsule. One subject ate a meal of Top Ramen and Haribo Goldbears, together with a drink of blue Gatorade. The other subject ate a meal of homemade chicken noodle soup, together with naturally flavored and colored gummy bears and a hibiscus drink. The camera followed.
[NSFLunch. Wired article
for a quick overview.] [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena
on Feb 11, 2012 -
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. [more inside]
posted by Foci for Analysis
on Oct 4, 2011 -