08w08:2 Guest Selected TED talks

by timothy. 0 Comments

For this Goodreads I asked Janna Popoff and Fedora Romita to select their favorite TED talks. – Timothy

Janna’s Popoff’s Links

I found TED by accident. I was in fact perusing a website and found it recommended there. I fell in love with TED the first time that I opened the page and discovered that this is what I had been looking for. I am disenchanted with the main stream media and saddened that we only hear truly horrific, terrifying, fear fueling stories on the news. It could be that I live abroad and I do not have access to local news, just CNN and BBC, so I see more of this than I should.

I had also been talking with a friend about how TV should be more about real people, people who are making differences in the world, or simply, people and their stories. We need more positive media in the world. Less propaganda about difference and hate and more about communities, understanding, and tolerance. People are doing great and positive things and we need more access and exposure to this. I know that I have become a very cynical viewer, and I don’t want to be.

People always start off by saying how difficult it is to narrow something down to their favorite, but it is true, and this task was no different. I haven’t watched every video on TED but I have watched many of them and I plan on watching more. These videos were all inspiring to me, and I learned something from every one. The videos use humour, which for me is hugely engaging, and these people were all very informed and passionate about their messages. TED covers a wide range of topics; science, technology, business, the environment, art design, culture, and global issues. The speaker are people who are recognized in their fields as making a contribution and a difference. The average time of a presentation is about 20 minutes; move at a quick pace, spark your interest, engage the viewer and then they are done, leaving one energized and introspective. Occasionally for some speakers the time can get up to about 40 minutes but this is rare.

The presenters make me feel lazy and sad that I am not contributing more to the world; I should because I can, and because I still have the passion that these people speak with.

Sometimes it is hard to know where to start Watch TED, the videos and speakers will surprise you. If there were a TED university, I would definitely attend. – Janna P.

Isabel Allende: Tales of passion.

Vik Muniz: Art with wire, thread, sugar, chocolate.

Malcolm Gladwell: What we can learn from spaghetti sauce.

Amory Lovins: We must win the oil end game.

Gever Tulley: 5 dangerous things you should let your kids do.

Eva Verters: My dream about the future of medicine.

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?

Ron Eglash: African fractals in buildings and braids.

AND I would like everyone to check out the web page for Pangea Day, this website is about people telling their stories, people from all over the world sharing their experiences and we can submit our own stories for others to watch.


Janna Popoff is a Canadian artist who is a part time university lecturer in Cheonan, South Korea. The rest of the year she lives and paints in Northern Poland.

Fedora Romita’s Links

Chris Anderson

Chris Anderson is a business man who in 2002 took over the TED conference. He talks a little about the .com failure and how that led him to the conference. Anderson expresses his vision for the conference. He sees TED as a multidisciplinary conference and expresses some of the core TED values as being truth, curiosity, diversity, no selling or corporate bullshit and the pursuit of interest across all disciplines.

Vilayanur Ramachandran

Ramachandran studies the functions and the structures of the brain. He talks about patients who are unable to recognize familiar faces, others who are able to recognize faces but where the wire in the brain that connects vision to emotion is cut. He also presents his simple and innovative solution to remove phantom limbs from patients. Finally he talks about Synesthesia, how it functions in the brains and why it is commonly found in artists, poets and writers.

Majora Carter

Majora Carter is from the South Bronx and runs a grassroots activist committee that works towards developing green space in that community. Faced with a number of challenges in her neighborhood such as a power plant, waste companies, North America’s largest food distribution centre and the potential for the building of a sports complex Carter is fighting to revitalize her community with the help of the TED community.

Sherwin Nuland

Sherwin Nuland is a well-known writer and physician who was hospitalized for extreme depression in the mid 70’s. Unable to carry on with his work as a physician his stay in the hospital lead his psychiatrist to offer the controversial suggestion of applying electro shock therapy as a cure for his depression. After this treatment he was totally cured. Here he talks about his journey through this period of his life.

Sirena Huang

An 11 year old violinist.

Fedora Romita is an artist living and working in Toronto

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