How do you teach an entire country how to vote when no one has done it before? It's a huge challenge facing fledgling democracies around the world -- and one of the biggest problems turns out to be a lack of shared language. After all, if you can't describe something, you probably can't understand it. In this eye-opening talk, election expert Philippa Neave shares her experiences from the front lines of democracy -- and her solution to this unique language gap.
Inside the mind of a former radical jihadist | Manwar Ali
Yesterday » 5:17:43
"For a long time, I lived for death," says Manwar Ali, a former radical jihadist who participated in violent, armed campaigns in the Middle East and Asia in the 1980s. In this moving talk, he reflects on his experience with radicalization and makes a powerful, direct appeal to anyone drawn to Islamist groups that claim violence and brutality are noble and virtuous: let go of anger and hatred, he says, and instead cultivate your heart to see goodness, beauty and truth in others.
We can't control what our intelligent machines are learning | Zeynep Tufekci
19 Oct 2016 5:18:26
Machine intelligence is here, and we're already using it to make subjective decisions. But the complex way AI grows and improves makes it hard to understand and even harder to control. In this cautionary talk, techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci explains how intelligent machines can fail in ways that don't fit human error patterns -- and in ways we won't expect or be prepared for. "We cannot outsource our responsibilities to machines," she says. "We must hold on ever tighter to human values and human ethics."
A temporary tattoo that brings hospital care to the home | Todd Coleman
18 Oct 2016 5:04:25
What if doctors could monitor patients at home with the same degree of accuracy they'd get during a stay at the hospital? Bioelectronics innovator Todd Coleman shares his quest to develop wearable, flexible electronic health monitoring patches that promise to revolutionize healthcare and make medicine less invasive.
We've stopped trusting institutions and started trusting strangers | Rachel Botsman
17 Oct 2016 4:48:54
Something profound is changing in the way we trust, says Rachel Botsman. While we used to place our trust in institutions like governments and banks, today we increasingly trust others, often strangers, on platforms like Airbnb and Uber and through technologies like the blockchain. This new era of trust could bring with it a more transparent, inclusive and accountable society -- if we get it right. Who do you trust?
Ballroom dance that breaks gender roles | Trevor Copp / Jeff Fox
14 Oct 2016 4:59:07
Tango, waltz, foxtrot ... these classic ballroom dances quietly perpetuate an outdated idea: that the man always leads and the woman always follows. That's an idea worth changing, say Trevor Copp and Jeff Fox, as they demonstrate their "Liquid Lead" dance technique along with fellow dancer Alida Esmail. Watch as Copp and Fox captivate and command the stage while boldly deconstructing and transforming the art of ballroom dance.
5 ways to lead in an era of constant change | Jim Hemerling
13 Oct 2016 5:08:44
Who says change needs to be hard? Organizational change expert Jim Hemerling thinks adapting your business in today's constantly-evolving world can be invigorating instead of exhausting. He outlines five imperatives, centered around putting people first, for turning company reorganization into an empowering, energizing task for all.
Art can heal PTSD's invisible wounds | Melissa Walker
12 Oct 2016 5:09:02
Trauma silences its victims, says creative arts therapist Melissa Walker, but art can help those suffering from the psychological wounds of war begin to open up and heal. In this inspiring talk, Walker describes how mask-making, in particular, allows afflicted servicemen and women reveal what haunts them -- and, finally, start to let it go.
The beauty of what we'll never know | Pico Iyer
11 Oct 2016 5:10:36
Almost 30 years ago, Pico Iyer took a trip to Japan, fell in love with the country and moved there. A keen observer of the human spirit, Iyer professes that he now feels he knows far less about Japan -- or, indeed, about anything -- than he thought he knew three decades ago. In this lyrical meditation on wisdom, Iyer expands on this curious insight about knowledge gained with age: that the more we know, the more we see how little we know.
How we talk about sexual assault online | Ione Wells
10 Oct 2016 5:25:42
We need a more considered approach to using social media for social justice, says writer and activist Ione Wells. After she was the victim of an assault in London, Wells published a letter to her attacker in a student newspaper that went viral and sparked the #NotGuilty campaign against sexual violence and victim-blaming. In this moving talk, she describes how sharing her personal story gave hope to others and delivers a powerful message against the culture of online shaming.
4 reasons to learn a new language | John McWhorter
07 Oct 2016 8:54:52
English is fast becoming the world's universal language, and instant translation technology is improving every year. So why bother learning a foreign language? Linguist and Columbia professor John McWhorter shares four alluring benefits of learning an unfamiliar tongue.
Ideas worth dating | Rainn Wilson
07 Oct 2016 0:49:47
Being alone takes its toll. Feel like it's time to make a real connection? Third-wheel with Rainn Wilson (star of "The Office") as he dates some of the best ideas on TED.com, and discover your perfect "idea mate" along the way.
What reality are you creating for yourself? | Isaac Lidsky
06 Oct 2016 5:07:13
Reality isn't something you perceive; it's something you create in your mind. Isaac Lidsky learned this profound lesson firsthand, when unexpected life circumstances yielded valuable insights. In this introspective, personal talk, he challenges us to let go of excuses, assumptions and fears, and accept the awesome responsibility of being the creators of our own reality.
How we can start winning the war against cancer | Adam de la Zerda
05 Oct 2016 5:13:27
Learn about the latest advances in the war against cancer from Stanford researcher Adam de la Zerda, who's working on some cutting-edge techniques of his own. Using a remarkable imaging technology that illuminates cancer-seeking gold particles injected into the body, de la Zerda's lab hopes to light the way for surgeons to remove even the tiniest trace of deadly tumors.
How immigrant voices make democracy stronger | Sayu Bhojwani
04 Oct 2016 5:01:06
In politics, representation matters -- and that's why we should elect leaders who reflect their country's diversity and embrace its multicultural tapestry, says Sayu Bhojwani. Through her own story of becoming an American citizen, the immigration scholar reveals how her love and dedication to her country turned into a driving force for political change. "We have fought to be here," she says, calling immigrant voices to action. "It's our country, too."
What you need to know about CRISPR | Ellen Jorgensen
03 Oct 2016 5:12:14
Should we bring back the wooly mammoth? Or edit a human embryo? Or wipe out an entire species that we consider harmful? The genome-editing technology CRISPR has made extraordinary questions like these legitimate -- but how does it work? Scientist and community lab advocate Ellen Jorgensen is on a mission to explain the myths and realities of CRISPR, hype-free, to the non-scientists among us.
Technology hasn't changed love. Here's why | Helen Fisher
30 Sep 2016 5:03:27
In our tech-driven, interconnected world, we've developed new ways and rules to court each other, but the fundamental principles of love have stayed the same, says anthropologist Helen Fisher. In this energetic tell-all from the front lines of love, learn how our faster connections are actually leading to slower, more intimate relationships. Watch to the end for a lively discussion with love expert Esther Perel.
Can we build AI without losing control over it? | Sam Harris
29 Sep 2016 4:51:38
Scared of superintelligent AI? You should be, says neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris -- and not just in some theoretical, existential crisis kind of way. We're going to build superhuman machines, says Harris, but we haven't yet grappled with the problems associated with creating something that may treat us the way we treat ants.
How we're harnessing nature's hidden superpowers | Oded Shoseyov
28 Sep 2016 5:15:16
What do you get when you combine the strongest materials from the plant world with the most elastic ones from the insect kingdom? Super-performing materials that might transform ... everything. Nanobiotechnologist Oded Shoseyov walks us through examples of amazing materials found throughout nature, in everything from cat fleas to sequoia trees, and shows the creative ways his team is harnessing them in everything from sports shoes to medical implants.
The history of African-American social dance | Camille A. Brown
27 Sep 2016 5:07:09
Why do we dance? African-American social dances started as a way for enslaved Africans to keep cultural traditions alive and retain a sense of inner freedom. They remain an affirmation of identity and independence. In this electric demonstration, packed with live performances, choreographer, educator and TED Fellow Camille A. Brown explores what happens when communities let loose and express themselves by dancing together.
The struggles of America's forgotten working class | J.D. Vance
26 Sep 2016 5:22:05
J.D. Vance grew up in a small, poor city in the Rust Belt of southern Ohio, where he had a front-row seat to many of the social ills plaguing America: a heroin epidemic, failing schools, families torn apart by divorce and sometimes violence. In a searching talk that will echo throughout the country's working-class towns, the author details what the loss of the American Dream feels like and raises an important question that everyone from community leaders to policy makers needs to ask: How can we help kids from America's forgotten places break free from hopelessness and live better lives?
We can fight terror without sacrificing our rights | Rebecca MacKinnon
23 Sep 2016 4:17:46
Can we fight terror without destroying democracy? Internet freedom activist Rebecca MacKinnon thinks that we'll lose the battle against extremism and demagoguery if we censor the internet and press. In this critical talk, she calls for a doubling-down on strong encryption and appeals to governments to better protect, not silence, the journalists and activists fighting against extremists.
The era of personal DNA testing is here | Sebastian Kraves
22 Sep 2016 4:35:01
From improving vaccines to modifying crops to solving crimes, DNA technology has transformed our world. Now, for the first time in history, anyone can experiment with DNA at home, in their kitchen, using a device smaller than a shoebox. We are living in a personal DNA revolution, says biotech entrepreneur Sebastian Kraves, where the secrets buried in DNA are yours to find.
Why open a school? To close a prison | Nadia Lopez
21 Sep 2016 4:59:41
Our kids are our future, and it's crucial they believe it themselves. That's why TED Fellow Nadia Lopez opened an academic oasis in Brownsville, Brooklyn, one of the most underserved and violent neighborhoods in all of New York City -- because she believes in every child's brilliance and capabilities. In this short, energizing talk, the founding principal of Mott Hall Bridges Academy (and a star of Humans of New York) shares how she helps her scholars envision a brighter future for themselves and their families.
Why you should know how much your coworkers get paid | David Burkus
20 Sep 2016 5:09:39
How much do you get paid? How does it compare to the people you work with? You should know, and so should they, says management researcher David Burkus. In this talk, Burkus questions our cultural assumptions around keeping salaries secret and makes a compelling case for why sharing them could benefit employees, organizations and society.