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TED Talks

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Why we ignore obvious problems — and how to act on them | Michele Wucker

Why do we often neglect big problems, like the financial crisis and climate change, until it's too late? Policy strategist Michele Wucker urges us to replace the myth of the black swan -- that rare, unforeseeable, unavoidable catastrophe -- with the reality of the gray rhino, the preventable danger that we choose to ignore. She shows why predictable crises catch us by surprise -- and lays out some signs that there may be a charging rhino in your life right now.

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Helping others makes us happier -- but it matters how we do it | Elizabeth Dunn

Research shows that helping others makes us happier. But in her groundbreaking work on generosity and joy, social psychologist Elizabeth Dunn found that there's a catch: it matters how we help. Learn how we can make a greater impact -- and boost our own happiness along the way -- if we make one key shift in how we help others. Let's stop thinking about giving as just this moral obligation and start thinking of it as a source of pleasure, Dunn says.

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Inside the mind of a master procrastinator | Tim Urban

Tim Urban knows that procrastination doesn't make sense, but he's never been able to shake his habit of waiting until the last minute to get things done. In this hilarious and insightful talk, Urban takes us on a journey through YouTube binges, Wikipedia rabbit holes and bouts of staring out the window -- and encourages us to think harder about what we're really procrastinating on, before we run out of time.

For more from Tim Urban, visit Wait But Why:

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My son was a Columbine shooter. This is my story | Sue Klebold

Sue Klebold is the mother of Dylan Klebold, one of the two shooters who committed the Columbine High School massacre, murdering 12 students and a teacher. She's spent years excavating every detail of her family life, trying to understand what she could have done to prevent her son's violence. In this difficult, jarring talk, Klebold explores the intersection between mental health and violence, advocating for parents and professionals to continue to examine the link between suicidal and homicidal thinking. Note: Comments are disabled for this video because YouTube's comment moderation tools are not up to the task of maintaining a quality discourse here. You are welcome and invited to comment on the talk at TED.com

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design -- plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more.
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How to spot a liar | Pamela Meyer

On any given day we're lied to from 10 to 200 times, and the clues to detect those lie can be subtle and counter-intuitive. Pamela Meyer, author of Liespotting, shows the manners and hotspots used by those trained to recognize deception -- and she argues honesty is a value worth preserving.

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A powerful way to unleash your natural creativity | Tim Harford

What can we learn from the world's most enduringly creative people? They slow-motion multitask, actively juggling multiple projects and moving between topics as the mood strikes -- without feeling hurried. Author Tim Harford shares how innovators like Einstein, Darwin, Twyla Tharp and Michael Crichton found their inspiration and productivity through cross-training their minds.

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Your brain hallucinates your conscious reality | Anil Seth

Right now, billions of neurons in your brain are working together to generate a conscious experience -- and not just any conscious experience, your experience of the world around you and of yourself within it. How does this happen? According to neuroscientist Anil Seth, we're all hallucinating all the time; when we agree about our hallucinations, we call it reality. Join Seth for a delightfully disorienting talk that may leave you questioning the very nature of your existence.

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Where are all the aliens? | Stephen Webb

The universe is incredibly old, astoundingly vast and populated by trillions of planets -- so where are all the aliens? Astronomer Stephen Webb has an explanation: we're alone in the universe. In a mind-expanding talk, he spells out the remarkable barriers a planet would need to clear in order to host an extraterrestrial civilization -- and makes a case for the beauty of our potential cosmic loneliness. The silence of the universe is shouting, 'We're the creatures who got lucky,' Webb says.

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How to stay calm when you know you'll be stressed | Daniel Levitin

You're not at your best when you're stressed. In fact, your brain has evolved over millennia to release cortisol in stressful situations, inhibiting rational, logical thinking but potentially helping you survive, say, being attacked by a lion. Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin thinks there's a way to avoid making critical mistakes in stressful situations, when your thinking becomes clouded — the pre-mortem. We all are going to fail now and then, he says. The idea is to think ahead to what those failures might be.

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The power of introverts | Susan Cain

In a culture where being social and outgoing are prized above all else, it can be difficult, even shameful, to be an introvert. But, as Susan Cain argues in this passionate talk, introverts bring extraordinary talents and abilities to the world, and should be encouraged and celebrated.

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Lessons from the Mental Hospital | Glennon Doyle Melton | TEDxTraverseCity

Glennon Doyle Melton is the author of the New York Times Bestseller, CARRY ON, WARRIOR, founder of and creator of Glennon believes that life is equal parts beautiful and brutal, and writes about the brutiful she finds in marriage, motherhood, faith, addiction and recovery. Glennon unleashes her wit, courage and irreverence to call us to accept ourselves exactly as we are today, but also incidentally inspires us to live bolder, more meaningful lives for others. Glennon is a speaker and regular contributor to Huffington Post and other publications. CARRY ON, WARRIOR and Glennon's philanthropic work have been featured on The TODAY Show, The Talk, Ladies' Home Journal, Parents Magazine, and American Baby, among other television and print outlets. She lives in Naples, Florida with her family.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

The secrets of learning a new language | Lýdia Machová

Want to learn a new language but feel daunted or unsure where to begin? You don't need some special talent or a language gene, says Lýdia Machová. In an upbeat, inspiring talk, she reveals the secrets of polyglots (people who speak multiple languages) and shares four principles to help unlock your own hidden language talent -- and have fun while doing it.

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Can we cure genetic diseases by rewriting DNA? | David R. Liu

In a story of scientific discovery, chemical biologist David R. Liu shares a breakthrough: his lab's development of base editors that can rewrite DNA. This crucial step in genome editing takes the promise of CRISPR to the next level: if CRISPR proteins are molecular scissors, programmed to cut specific DNA sequences, then base editors are pencils, capable of directly rewriting one DNA letter into another. Learn more about how these molecular machines work -- and their potential to treat or even cure genetic diseases.

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10 ways to have a better conversation | Celeste Headlee

When your job hinges on how well you talk to people, you learn a lot about how to have conversations — and that most of us don't converse very well. Celeste Headlee has worked as a radio host for decades, and she knows the ingredients of a great conversation: Honesty, brevity, clarity and a healthy amount of listening. In this insightful talk, she shares 10 useful rules for having better conversations. Go out, talk to people, listen to people, she says. And, most importantly, be prepared to be amazed.

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design -- plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more.
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The person you really need to marry | Tracy McMillan | TEDxOlympicBlvdWomen

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Tracy McMillan is a television writer (Mad Men, United States of Tara) and relationship author who wrote the book Why You're Not Married...Yet, based on her viral 2011 Huffington Post blog. She also appeared as a dating coach on the NBC reality show Ready For Love. She lives in Los Angeles and is the mother of a 16-year-old guy.

In her TEDxOlympicBlvdWomen talk, McMillan answers the question: Who is the one person you need to marry in order to have a successful relationship? (Yourself)

About TEDx, x = independently organized event
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
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10 things you didn't know about orgasm | Mary Roach

Bonk author Mary Roach delves into obscure scientific research, some of it centuries old, to make 10 surprising claims about sexual climax, ranging from the bizarre to the hilarious. (This talk is aimed at adults. Viewer discretion advised.)

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The power of vulnerability | Brené Brown

Brené Brown studies human connection -- our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk at TEDxHouston, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity. A talk to share.

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How the mysterious dark net is going mainstream | Jamie Bartlett

There’s a parallel Internet you may not have run across yet — accessed by a special browser and home to a freewheeling collection of sites for everything from anonymous activism to illicit activities. Jamie Bartlett reports from the dark net.

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design -- plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more.
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Strange answers to the psychopath test | Jon Ronson

Is there a definitive line that divides crazy from sane? With a hair-raising delivery, Jon Ronson, author of The Psychopath Test, illuminates the gray areas between the two. (With live-mixed sound by Julian Treasure and animation by Evan Grant.)

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The greatest TED Talk ever sold - Morgan Spurlock

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With humor and persistence, filmmaker Morgan Spurlock dives into the hidden but influential world of brand marketing on his quest to make a completely sponsored film about sponsorship. (And yes, onstage naming rights for this talk were sponsored too. By whom and for how much? He'll tell you.)

Talk by Morgan Spurlock.

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