Posts from ted.com
How you can use impostor syndrome to your benefitHave you ever doubted your abilities, feared you were going to be discovered as a "fraud"? That's called "impostor syndrome," and you're definitely not alone in feeling it, says entrepreneur and CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes. In this funny, relatable talk, he shares how his own experiences of impostor syndrome helped pave the way to his success -- and shows how you can use it to your advantage, too.
How do our brains process speech?The average 20-year-old knows between 27,000 and 52,000 different words. Spoken out loud, most of these words last less than a second. With every word, the brain has a quick decision to make: which of those thousands of options matches the signal? And about 98% of the time, the brain chooses the correct word. How is this possible? Gareth Gaskell digs into the complexities of speech comprehension. [Directed by Art Shot, narrated by Addison Anderson, music by Stephen LaRosa].
How one tree grows 40 different kinds of fruitArtist Sam Van Aken shares the breathtaking work behind the "Tree of 40 Fruit," an ongoing series of hybridized fruit trees that grow 40 different varieties of peaches, plums, apricots, nectarines and cherries -- all on the same tree. What began as an art project to showcase beautiful, multi-hued blossoms has become a living archive of rare heirloom specimens and their histories, a hands-on (and delicious!) way to teach people about cultivation and a vivid symbol of the need for biodiversity to ensure food security. "More than just food, embedded in these fruit is our culture ... In many ways, these fruit are our story," Van Aken says.
What makes tattoos permanent?The earliest recorded tattoo was found on a Peruvian mummy in 6,000 BC. That's some old ink! And considering humans lose roughly 40,000 skin cells per hour, how do these markings last? Claudia Aguirre details the different methods, machines and macrophages (you'll see) that go into making tattoos stand the test of time. [Directed by TOGETHER, narrated by Addison Anderson].1
How urban spaces can preserve history and build communityCan public spaces both reclaim the past and embrace the future? Landscape architect Walter Hood has explored this question over the course of an iconic career, with projects ranging from Lafayette Square Park in Oakland to the upcoming International African American Museum in Charleston, South Carolina. In this inspiring talk packed with images of his work, Hood shares the five simple concepts that guide his approach to creating spaces that illuminate shared memories and force us to look at one another in a different way.
The MIT Rap ChallengeToward bringing us together during the 2020 pandemic, an MIT student, Curtis Northcutt (a.k.a. PomDP the PhD Rapper) created the MIT rap song with tribute to notables like Claude Shannon, Patrick Winston, and Feynman. The MIT rap song and music video was played at the 2020 MIT graduation during pre-commencement. The song is a single from the upcoming NERD album and the landmark song of the 'MIT Rap Challenge', a challenge to other schools, companies, and communities to create a rap song that empowers and embodies the spirit of their community.
You are your microbesFrom the microbes in our stomachs to the ones on our teeth we are homes to millions of unique and diverse communities which help our bodies function. Jessica Green and Karen Guillemin emphasize the importance of understanding the many organisms that make up each and every organism. [Directed by Celine Keller and Paula Spagnoletti, narrated by Jessica Green].
7 beliefs that can silence women -- and how to unlearn themIn India (and many other countries), girls and women still find themselves silenced by traditional rules of politeness and restraint, says social scientist Deepa Narayan. In this frank talk, she identifies seven deeply entrenched norms that reinforce inequality -- and calls on men to help usher in change.
You have no idea where camels really come fromCamels are so well adapted to the desert that it's hard to imagine them living anywhere else. But what if we have them pegged all wrong? What if those big humps, feet and eyes were evolved for a different climate and a different time? In this talk, join Radiolab's Latif Nasser as he tells the surprising story of how a very tiny, very strange fossil upended the way he sees camels, and the world. This talk comes from the PBS special "TED Talks: Science & Wonder."
How to create meaningful connections while apartAuthor Priya Parker shares tools for creating meaningful connections with friends, family and coworkers during the coronavirus pandemic -- and shows how we can take advantage of gatherings that are unique to this moment of social distancing. "We don't necessarily need to gather more," she says. "We need to gather better." (This virtual conversation is part of the TED Connects series, hosted by head of TED Chris Anderson and current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers. Recorded March 27, 2020)
Our immigration conversation is broken -- here's how to have a better oneHow did the US immigration debate get to be so divisive? In this informative talk, historian and writer Paul A. Kramer shows how an "insider vs. outsider" framing has come to dominate the way people in the US talk about immigration -- and suggests a set of new questions that could reshape the conversation around whose life, rights and thriving matters.
The surprising ingredient that makes businesses work betterWhat is it about unfairness? Whether it's not being invited to a friend's wedding or getting penalized for bad luck or an honest mistake, unfairness often makes us so upset that we can't think straight. And it's not just a personal issue -- it's also bad for business, says Marco Alverà. He explains how his company works to create a culture of fairness -- and how tapping into our innate sense of what's right and wrong makes for happier employees and better results.
My journey to thank all the people responsible for my morning coffeeAuthor A.J. Jacobs embarked on a quest with a deceptively simple idea at its heart: to personally thank every person who helped make his morning cup of coffee. More than one thousand "thank yous" later, Jacobs reflects on the globe-trotting journey that ensued -- and shares the life-altering wisdom he picked up along the way. "I discovered that my coffee would not be possible without hundreds of people I take for granted," Jacobs says.
What I learned from 100 days of rejectionJia Jiang adventures boldly into a territory so many of us fear: rejection. By seeking out rejection for 100 days -- from asking a stranger to borrow $100 to requesting a "burger refill" at a restaurant -- Jiang desensitized himself to the pain and shame that rejection often brings and, in the process, discovered that simply asking for what you want can open up possibilities where you expect to find dead ends.
The surprising habits of original thinkersHow do creative people come up with great ideas? Organizational psychologist Adam Grant studies "originals": thinkers who dream up new ideas and take action to put them into the world. In this talk, learn three unexpected habits of originals -- including embracing failure. "The greatest originals are the ones who fail the most, because they're the ones who try the most," Grant says. "You need a lot of bad ideas in order to get a few good ones."
What is so special about the human brain?The human brain is puzzling -- it is curiously large given the size of our bodies, uses a tremendous amount of energy for its weight and has a bizarrely dense cerebral cortex. But: why? Neuroscientist Suzana Herculano-Houzel puts on her detective's cap and leads us through this mystery. By making "brain soup," she arrives at a startling conclusion.
Why do we itch?The average person experiences dozens of individual itches each day. We've all experienced the annoyance of an inconvenient itch — but have you ever pondered why we itch in the first place? Is there actually an evolutionary purpose to the itch, or is it simply there to annoy us? Emma Bryce digs deep into the skin to find out. [Directed by Sashko Danylenko, narrated by Addison Anderson].
Why the secret to success is setting the right goalsOur leaders and institutions are failing us, but it's not always because they're bad or unethical, says venture capitalist John Doerr -- often, it's simply because they're leading us toward the wrong objectives. In this practical talk, Doerr shows us how we can get back on track with "Objectives and Key Results," or OKRs -- a goal-setting system that's been employed by the likes of Google, Intel and Bono to set and execute on audacious goals. Learn more about how setting the right goals can mean the difference between success and failure -- and how we can use OKRs to hold our leaders and ourselves accountable.
The difference between being "not racist" and antiracistThere is no such thing as being "not racist," says author and historian Ibram X. Kendi. In this vital conversation, he defines the transformative concept of antiracism to help us more clearly recognize, take responsibility for and reject prejudices in our public policies, workplaces and personal beliefs. Learn how you can actively use this awareness to uproot injustice and inequality in the world -- and replace it with love. (This virtual interview, hosted by TED's current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and speaker development curator Cloe Shasha, was recorded June 9, 2020.)