March 5, 2011
The first time I came across TED was through a YouTube video of Pranav Mistry demonstrating SixthSence technology and the interaction of the digital and real worlds (included below). From that day, I’ve been following TED regularly and recently attended my first event in London. In one sentence I would describe TED as a conference, a forum and a network for sharing ideas.
Whether you attend or watch online, events like TED make you stop, they expose you to interesting ideas and hopefully inspire you to think about things differently. In this fast pace world, we need time to stop and think – a lot of good ideas come out of it.
When our clients tell us how their company started, it usually includes some ‘aha moment’, a moment when they started looking at something differently than everyone else and realised that they can build a business around their idea. Whether that impulse comes from a TED event or anything else doesn’t really matter. What matters is being able to step back, listen and think.
Going to TED
If you don’t have the thousands of dollars to attend one of the big TED conferences and you want more than just the experience of watching TED videos online, you can search for local, independently organised events called TEDx. Just like the big conferences, the ethos of TEDx is to spread ideas from the technology, entertainment and design worlds.
Most recently I attended TEDx Orenda organised to coincide with BETT 2011, the UK’s biggest educational technology trade show. Within the three hours, about a dozen speakers shared their big ideas from Jack Schofield’s views of the history and future of computing to the story of a 16-year old Rhys Morgan (@rhysmorgan) who used the internet to spread the word about a ‘miracle cure’ for Crohn’s disease which is nothing more than an industrial bleach, to a story of the School of Communication Arts 2.0 that uses a curriculum wiki to continuously adapt its programme to the changes in advertising and communications.
TED is just one of the many forums and communities for sharing ideas. If you haven’t been to TED or TEDx I recommend attending it and if you feel up to it, you can even organise one. Just make sure to send me an invite.
Originally published on the Atomic PR UK blog