Ted Global 2011


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Leanings and insights from TED Global 2011 conference


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Ted Global 2011

  1. 1. Friday, February 3, 12
  2. 2. Edinburgh, Scotland July 11-15, 2011 50-plus speakers and performers from all over the world “The Stuff of Life”Friday, February 3, 12
  3. 3. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Shifts & Discovering the World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Constructs Human Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  4. 4. TED Global 2011’s Highlights Paul Bloom Rebecca MacKinnon Tim Hartford Psychologist Media Activist Communications Technology Innovator How Pleasure Works On An Internet For The People On Making Good Mistakes Why do we like an original painting MacKinnon explores private sovereignty Leaders and leading thinkers may better than a forgery if we can’t tell in cyberspace--and how the empowering come to believe that their answer is the difference? potential of technology is being always the only/best one. Hartford constrained due to big company’s terms this the, “God complex” Psychologist Paul Bloom argues that it’s more than the status of a limited compliance with nation-states. Harford suggests, we need to learn to item. She calls for a citizen-centric rather than admit our fallibility, embrace failure and Human beings are essentialists -- our government-centric internet revolution. to constantly adapt, improvise and plan beliefs about the history & essence of to work from the bottom up rather than objects changes how we experience “What people can and cannot do with the top down. them and how much pleasure (or information has more effect than ever on the pain) we derive. exercise of power in the physical world.” Each and every one of us has a vital part to play in building a world in which government and technology serve the world’s people and Learn not the other way around.” Learn Learn More More MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  5. 5. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Shifts & Human World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Constructs Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Bio Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Lying Language Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  6. 6. Interpersonal Relations Pamela Meyer Mark Pagel Lie Detector Evolutionary Biologist On Lying and Deception On the Evolution of Language We all lie or are lied to between 10 and 200 times a day. “Lying is our “Language is the voice of our attempt to bridge the gap between genes” how we wish we could be and what Observing and learning from we’re really like.” others’ mistakes helps us choose ...lying can be catastrophic. the best options, and evolve with better options. “Last year, we were deceived by the financial sector to the tune of $1 “Social theft” --> “Social Learning” trillion.” Paul Zak Sheril Kirshenbaum Neuroeconomist Biologist On Oxytocin On Kissing Zak is the pioneer in a new study We kiss for more than just romantic that has identified Oxytocin as reasons. responsible for a variety of virtuous behaviors in humans such as It’s how we test our security, how empathy, generosity and trust. It’s we choose our mates, and how we what he calls the brain’s “moral find our way. molecule.” “We’re interpreting our mouths But he suggests, “8 hugs a day” as more than we realize” the best recipe for morality, over doses of Oxytocin.Friday, February 3, 12
  7. 7. Pamela Meyer Lie detector Pamela Meyer is the CEO of social networking company Simpatico Networks. She has also been working with a team of researchers over several years to collect and review most of the research on deception that has been published, from law-enforcement to military to psychology to espionage. She became an expert herself, receiving advanced training in deception detection, including multiple courses of advanced training in interrogation, microexpression analysis, statement analysis, behavior and body language interpretation, and emotion recognition. Her research is synthetized in her bestselling book Liespotting. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  8. 8. Paul Zak Neuroeconomist A professor at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California, Zak believes most humans are biologically wired to cooperate, but that business and economics ignore the biological foundations of human reciprocity, risking loss: when oxytocin levels are high in subjects, people’s generosity to strangers increases up to 80 percent; and countries with higher levels of trust – lower crime, better education – fare better economically. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  9. 9. Mark Pagel Evolutionary Biologist Pagel builds statistical models to examine the evolutionary processes imprinted in human behavior, from genomics to the emergence of complex systems -- to culture. He’s looking for patterns in the rates of evolution of language elements, and hoping to find the social factors that influence trends of language evolution. At the University of Reading, Pagel heads the Evolution Laboratory in the biology department, where he explores such questions as, "Why would humans evolve a system of communication that prevents them with communicating with other members of the same species?" Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  10. 10. Sheril Kirshenbaum Biologist and writerA research scientist at the University of Texas, Sheril Kirshenbaum wrote The Science of Kissing, containing "everything you always wanted to know aboutkissing but either havent asked, couldnt find out, or didnt realize you should understand."She also co-authored Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future with Chris Mooney, named by President Obamas science advisor,John Holdren, as his top recommended read.She works with the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austins Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy, where she works onprojects to enhance public understanding of energy issues as they relate to food, oceans and culture. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  11. 11. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Shifts & Human World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Constructs Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  12. 12. World Peace Julia Bacha Filmmaker Jarreth Merz Filmmaker, “An African Election” On the Power of Attention On Discovering His African Identity Just like acts of violent terrorism, non-violent efforts for change are examples of, “theater While venturing to Ghana to film the seeking an audience”. presidential elections, Merz discovered that contrary to stereotype, and despite The international community must pay more violence in the nation, “Africans can attention to non-violent acts to turn non- govern themselves.” violence into a functional behavior. Jeremy Gilley Maajid Nawaz Anti-Extremism Activist Anti-Extremism Activist On Peace One Day On Extremism & Social Movements For the past 10 years, filmmaker Jeremy Gilley We’re in “The Age of Behavior”: defined by has been promoting September 21 as a true ideas and narratives. international day of ceasefire, a day to carry out humanitarian aid in the worlds most dangerous Extremism is the result of successful social zones. The practical challenge is huge, but movements. Whereas Democratic activists on Gilley says that, “By working together, I the other hand, have been plagued by seriously think we can start to change things complacency, political correctness, failing and create peace one day.” politics and economics, and an ideology of resistance. Democratic advocates must move beyond a political goal and establish a social movement.Friday, February 3, 12
  13. 13. Julia Bacha FilmmakerJulia Bacha is the director and producer of "Budrus," a documentary about a West Bank village, a giant barrier and nonviolent resistance.Bacha was also the co-director of Encounter Point, featured during Pangea Day in 2009 -- a feature documentary film about four ordinary people, on both sidesof the conflict, who lost nearly everything but who nevertheless work for an end to occupation in favor of peace.She says: "We are providing alternative role models. I have seen people challenged, inspired and motivated to take action based on the stories we tell.” Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  14. 14. Jarreth Merz FilmmakerJarreth Merz new film, "An African Election," follows the 2008 presidential elections in Ghana from start to finish.Raised in Ghana, Switzerland and Germany, Jarreth Merz is a filmmaker and actor.As a director, his work is rooted in observing life as it presents itself in all its complexities -- as shown in his latest documentary, “An African Election,” which followsthe 2008 presidential elections in Ghana, West Africa.Merzs stepfather, a political player on Ghana, helped him get access behind the scenes; then Jarreth and his cameraman brother, Kevin, followed the presidentialcandidates in the unpredictable months leading up to the final night. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  15. 15. Maajid Nawaz Anti-extremism activist Maajid Nawaz works to promote conversation, tolerance and democracy in Muslim and non-Muslim communities. As a teenager, British-born Maajid Nawaz was recruited to the global Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir In 2009, he founded Khudi, a counter-extremism social movement working to promote a democratic culture in Pakistan. In the UK, the think tank he co- founded, Quilliam, engages in “counter-Islamist thought-generating” -- looking for new narratives of citizenship, identity and belonging in a globalized world. He says: "I can now say that the more I learnt about Islam, the more tolerant I became.” Watch Learn The Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  16. 16. Jeremy Gilley Peace activist Filmmaker Jeremy Gilley founded Peace One Day to create an annual Peace Day. For the past 10 years, Jeremy Gilley has been promoting September 21 as a true international day of ceasefire, a day to carry out humanitarian aid in the worlds most dangerous zones. Gilley has recorded successes. For instance, on September 21, 2008, some 1.85 million children under 5 years old, in seven Afghan provinces where conflict has previously prevented access, were given a vaccine for polio. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  17. 17. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Shifts & Human World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Constructs Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  18. 18. Media Yang Lan Misha Glenny Media Mogul, TV Host Underworld Investigator, McMafia On Social Media On Hackers Yang Lan’s story; going from “The internet embodies a complex struggling actress to the “Oprah of dilemma that pits the demands of security with the desire for freedom.” China”. Glenny’s current focus is on hackers “With barriers stacked against Chinese and their characteristics. youth who have a social media voice, change is afoot 140 characters at a time.” These people should be given jobs with the state to help the authorities stop terrorist and criminal hacking so we can keep control of the Internet.  Nadia al-Sakkaf Mikko Hypponen Cyber Security Expert On Being Editor-in-Chief of On Cyber Security The Yemini Times Nadia Al-Sakkaf became the chief editor of There are potentially huge the Yemen Times, the countrys  first and problems with the Internet. most widely read independent English- language newspaper. Viruses are being written by organized criminals who find ways In allowing herself to be interviewed, she to steal credit card information and embezzle millions of dollars. drives home the point that, “In times of revolution, one message to the West: It’s very “If we don’t fight online crime, we important for YOU to listen to OUR voice.” run the risk of losing it all.”Friday, February 3, 12
  19. 19. Yang Lan Media mogul, TV host Yang is a self-made entrepreneur and the most powerful woman in the Chinese media. As chair of Sun Media Investment Holdings, a business empire she built with her husband, Yang is a pioneer of open communication. Yang started her journalism career by establishing the first current-events TV program in China. She created and hosted many other groundbreaking shows. The popular Her Village, which now includes an online magazine and website, brings together China’s largest community of professional women (more than 200 million people a month).Friday, February 3, 12
  20. 20. Nadia Al-Sakkaf Journalist Nadia Al-Sakkaf became the chief editor of the Yemen Times, the countrys  first and most widely read independent English-language newspaper, in March 2005, and quickly became a leading voice in Yemen and worldwide media on issues of media, gender, development and politics. During the May 2011 leadership crisis in Yemen, Al-Sakkaf and her organization were vital in reporting the news and putting the political situation in context for the wider world. And as the crisis rolls on, the role of an independent press becomes even more vital. The Yemen Times has reporters on the ground in Sanaa, Taiz, Aden and Hodeida covering the uprising. Watch Learn The Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  21. 21. Misha Glenny Underworld investigator In minute detail, Misha Glennys 2008 book, McMafia, illuminates the byzantine outlines of global organized crime. To research this magisterial work Glenny penetrated the convoluted, globalized and franchised modern underworld -- often at considerable personal risk. Legal society ignores this world at its peril, but Glenny suggests that conventional law enforcement might not be able to combat a problem whose roots lie in global instability. While covering the Central Europe beat for the Guardian and the BBC, Glenny wrote several acclaimed books on the fall of Yugoslavia and the rise of the Balkan nations. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  22. 22. Mikko Hypponen Cybersecurity expert The chief research officer at F-Secure Corporation in Finland, Mikko Hypponen has led his team through some of the largest computer virus outbreaks in history. His team took down the world-wide network used by the Sobig.F worm. He was the first to warn the world about the Sasser outbreak, and he has done classified briefings on the operation of the Stuxnet worm -- a hugely complex worm designed to sabotage Iranian nuclear enrichment facilities. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  23. 23. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Human World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Meta Shifts Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  24. 24. Sustainability for a Better World Paul Snelgrove Justin Hall Tipping Josette Sheeran Marine Biologist Biologist Anti-hunger leader On Oceans On Nano Energy On Eradicating Global Hunger Oceans cover 70% of the planet, Free energy and electricity to the produce half the oxygen we breathe, and world; a cleaner planet with fresh 1 out of every 7 people in the world constitute the largest habitat on earth. drinking water--harnessed by don’t know how/where to find food controlling the electron. each day. Snelgrove is part of a huge effort to create an oceanic census of the world’s Let’s eliminate power plants and “We shouldn’t look at the hungry as marine life--an attempt to try to stop the grid, and store energy by victims, but as the solution--as the destructing oceans and to, “try to transferring power to each other. value chain to fight hunger.” preserve what’s left.”  Erik Hersman Shoshei Shigematsu Blogger Architect On Innovation in Africa On Architecture The new face of Africa says, Shigematsu uses the box as a way “sustainable”. New ideas coming to exemplify the notion that, “shape out of Africa is no longer the doesn’t really matter.” But he aims exception, it should be expected. to “do something unknown with a very known shape” “To those from Africa, until we own the narrative about our continent, He calls for a “grand vision of someone else will,” he says. “To urbanism”, post Japanese those outside of Africa, I would say tsunami-- “we can’t just rebuild the disaster zone” Bunker  Roy—On  Building  a  Better  School another look.” takeFriday, February 3, 12
  25. 25. Paul Snelgrove Marine biologist Paul Snelgrove, a professor at Memorial University in Newfoundland, studies benthic sedimentary ecosystems. He led the team that produced the book and led the group that pulled together the findings of the Census of Marine Life -- synthesizing 10 years and 540 expeditions into a book of wonders. Snelgroves synthesized this mass of findings into a book, Discoveries of the Census of Marine Life. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  26. 26. Justin Hall-Tipping Science entrepreneur Justin Hall-Tipping works on nano-energy startups -- mastering the electron to create power. Justin Hall-Tipping had an epiphany about energy after seeing footage of a chunk of ice the size of his home state (Connecticut) falling off Antarctica into the ocean, and decided to focus on science to find new forms of energy. He formed Nanoholdings to work closely with universities and labs who are studying new forms of nano-scale energy. Nanotech as a field is still very young and nano-energy in particular holds tremendous promise. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  27. 27. Shohei Shigematsu Architect The director of OMA*AMO in New York, Shohei Shigematsu thinks about how society shapes buildings. The director of Rem Koolhaas New York office,  OMA*AMO, Shohei Shigematsu has worked on high-profile buildings like the CCTV tower in Beijing, and his conceptual work drives projects like the (unbuilt) Whitney Museum extension in New York City and the Prada Epicenters in London and Shanghai. His approach balances the design approach with the often dense matrix of site-specific, economic and emotional connections. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  28. 28. Erik Hersman Blogger Blogger, geek, and power networker Erik Hersman, is a key member of the African blog revolution. Erik Hersman grew up in Kenya and Sudan. From his home in the US, he keeps two influential blogs: WhiteAfrican, where he writes about technology on the African continent, and AfriGadget, a group blog that celebrates African ingenuity. During the Kenyan post-election crisis of 2007-2008, Hersman helped create the website Ushahidi, a place to report incidents of violence via the web and texts. The original Ushahidi tool was written in two days; later that year, it won the NetSquared Mashup Challenge. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  29. 29. Josette Sheeran Anti-hunger leader Josette Sheeran, executive director of the Rome-based United Nations World Food Programme, oversees the largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger around the globe. Sheeran believes that hunger and poverty must and can be solved through both immediate actions and long-term policies. Prior to joining the UN in 2007, Sheeran was the Under Secretary for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs at the US Department of State, where she frequently focused on economic diplomacy to help emerging nations move toward self-sufficiency and prosperity. Watch The Learn Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  30. 30. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Interpersonal Societal Shifts & Human World Peace Media Sustainability Relations Constructs Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  31. 31. Societal Shifts & Constructs Geoffrey West Kevin Slavin Theorist Algoworld Expert On the Hidden Laws of Cities On Algorithms Cities are where global problems originate Slavin explores how algorithms are from these days. Everything from health, to pervasive and shaping our understanding of economic, to political issues stem from markets, behaviors and the world at large, cities. He suggests we rethink the role of math in life and society, noting that there are 2,000 Yet, cities continue to grow; they are not physicists working on Wall Street. failing. This is because we are the city. City = nature. Many of them work on “black box trading”, which, as Slavin facetiously pointed out, makes up “70% of the algorithm formerly known as your pension.” Yasheng Huang Niall Ferguson Political Economist Historian On India Versus China On the End of Western Dominance In examining why China has grown twice as fast as India in the past 30 years, some of the takeaways are... “The biggest story of our lifetime is the end of Western predominance.” - Political reform is a must if China wishes to sustain growth and continue West had originally gained dominance to be the economic superstar due to advances in science; property - Women play a significant role in rights; modern medicine; a consumer strong societies--this has contributed society; the work ethic. to China’s triumph over India. Now that information is all democratized, nothing is exclusive.Friday, February 3, 12
  32. 32. Yasheng Huang Political economist MIT and Fudan University professor Yasheng Huang is an authority on how to get ahead in emerging economies. The China and India Labs he founded at MITs Sloan School of Management specialize in helping local startups improve their strategies. His book,Capitalism with Chinese Characteristics (2008), chronicles three decades of economic reform in China and documents the critical role that private entrepreneurship played in the Communist nation’s “economic miracle.” Huang believes that China is moving away from Marxism (public ownership) but not Leninism (ideology of state control) -- and that strong social fundamentals are the key reason for its growth. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  33. 33. Niall Ferguson Historian Niall Ferguson teaches history and business administration at Harvard and is a senior research fellow at several other universities, including Oxford. His books chronicle a wide range of political and socio-economic events; he has written about everything from German politics during the era of inflation to a financial history of the world. He’s now working on a biography of former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Ferguson is a prolific and often controversial commentator on contemporary politics and economics. His latest book and TV series, Civilization: The West and the Rest, aims to help 21st-century audiences understand the past and the present. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  34. 34. Geoffrey West Theorist Trained as a theoretical physicist, Geoffrey West has turned his analytical mind toward the inner workings of more concrete things, like ... animals. In a paper for Science in 1997, he and his team uncovered what he sees as a surprisingly universal law of biology — the way in which heart rate, size and energy consumption are related across most living animals. A past president of the multidisciplinary Santa Fe Institute (after decades working in high-energy physics at Los Alamos and Stanford), West now studies the behavior and development of cities. In his newest work, he proposes that one simple number, population, can predict a stunning array of details about any city, from crime rate to economic activity. Watch Learn The Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  35. 35. Edinburgh NationalConference Center Discovering The Interpersonal Societal World Peace Media Sustainability Human Relations Meta Shifts Organism Filmmaking Cyber-Security Architecture Algorithms Bio Chemistry Communications Neuroscience Anti-Hunger Publishing Genetics Lying Marine Biology Urbanism Psychology Bio Anti-Extremism China’s Mass Media Evolution Developing World Political Economics Brain ScienceFriday, February 3, 12
  36. 36. Allan Jones Annie Murphy Paul Discovering the Brain Scientist Science Author On Mapping the Human Brain On Prenatal Learning Human Organism Though harvesting the human brain, Jones and his Learning starts in the womb. “We’re learning team have mapped its 86 billion neurons, and about the world before we even enter it”. have been able to remap 50 million data points in each brain. Language, smell, taste, emotion... “The brain is still undiscovered, a new frontier” Pregnancy is the new frontier for discovering how we develop. Svante Paabo Alison Gopnik Geneticist Child Development Psychologist On Genomes On Thinking Babies The majority of our bodies possess no differences “Babies are the research and development from one another. department of the human species.” So, “why are we so alike?” How and what babies think is more than just irrational emotions--they’re learning a lot in little Paabo and other scientists now think that time. Researchers are wondering why and how some, if not all, early humans mixed with this happens. Neanderthals after we began to migrate out of Africa. Paabo’s work is helping to understand our ancestral family tree of our Daniel Wolpert Brain Scientist On Brains and Movement “The only reason we have a brain is for adaptable and complex movement.” From the contractions that underpin our speech and facial mimicry to the actions that allow us to exert force — movement is the only way to affect the world around us.Friday, February 3, 12
  37. 37. Svante Paabo Geneticist Svante Paabo explores human genetic evolution by analyzing DNA extracted from ancient sources, including mummies, an Ice Age hunter and the bone fragments of Neanderthals. Svante Paabos research on the DNA of human and nonhuman primates has exposed the key genetic changes that transformed our grunting ape-like ancestors into the charming latte-sipping humans we are today. As a director at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, Paabo and his team developed a technique of isolating and sequencing the DNA of creatures long extinct. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  38. 38. Jae Rhim Lee Artist Artist Jae Rhim Lee re-imagines the relationships between the body and the world. Jae Rhim Lee is a visual artist and mushroom lover. In her early work, as a grad student at MIT, she built systems that reworked basic human processes: sleeping, urinating and eating. Now shes working on a compelling new plan for the final human process: decomposition. Her Infinity Burial Project explores the choices we face after death, and how our choices reflect our denial or acceptance of death’s physical implications. Shes been developing a new strain of fungus, the Infinity Mushroom, that feeds on and remediates the industrial toxins we store in our bodies and convert our unused bodies efficiently into nutrients. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  39. 39. Allan Jones Brain scientist As CEO of the Allen Institute for Brain Science, Allan Jones leads an ambitious project to build an open, online, interactive atlas of the human brain. The Allen Institute for Brain Science -- based in Seattle, kickstarted by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen -- has a mission to fuel discoveries about the human brain by building tools the entire scientific community can use. As CEO, one of Allan Jones first projects was to lead the drive to create a comprehensive atlas of the brain of a mouse. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  40. 40. Daniel Wolpert Movement expert A neuroscientist and engineer, Daniel Wolpert studies how the brain controls the body. At his lab in the Engineering department at Cambridge, Daniel Wolpert and his team are studying why, looking to understand the computations underlying the brains sensorimotor control of the body. As he says, "I believe that to understand movement is to understand the whole brain. And therefore it’s important to remember when you are studying memory, cognition, sensory processing, they’re there for a reason, and that reason is action.” Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  41. 41. Annie Murphy Paul Science author Annie Murphy Paul investigates how life in the womb shapes who we become. Science writer, she write “Origins”, a history and study of this emerging field structured around a personal narrative – Paul was pregnant with her second child at the time. What she finds suggests a far more dynamic nature between mother and fetus than typically acknowledged, and opens up the possibility that the time before birth is as crucial to human development as early childhood. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  42. 42. Alison Gopnik Child development psychologist Alison Gopnik takes us into the fascinating minds of babies and children, and shows us how much we understand before we even realize we do. The author of The Philosophical Baby, The Scientist in the Crib and other influential books on cognitive development, Gopnik presents evidence that babies and children are conscious of far more than we give them credit for, as they engage every sense and spend every waking moment discovering, filing away, analyzing and acting on information about how the world works. Gopnik’s work draws on psychological, neuroscientific, and philosophical developments in child development research to understand how the human mind learns, how and why we love, our ability to innovate, as well as giving us a deeper appreciation for the role of parenthood. Learn MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  43. 43. Paul Bloom Psychologist Cynthia Kenyon Biochemist, geneticist Paul Bloom studies our common-sense understanding of the world -- how we know what we know, why we like what we like.  Paul Blooms latest book is called How Pleasure Works -- which is indicative of the kinds of questions he looks at, the big basic ones:  Why do we like some things and not others? How do we decide whats fair and unfair? And the million-dollar question: How much of our moral development, what we think of as our mature reasoning process, is actually hard-wired and present in us from birth? To answer this question, at his Mind and Development Lab at Yale, he and his students study how babies make moral decisions. (How do you present a moral quandary to a 1-year-old? Through simple, gamelike experiments that yield surprisingly adult-like results.) Watch The Learn Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  44. 44. Rebecca MacKinnon Media activist Rebecca MacKinnon looks at issues of privacy, free expression and governance (or lack of) in the digital networks, platforms and services on which we are all increasingly dependent. A former head of CNN’s Beijing and Tokyo bureaus, MacKinnon is an expert on Chinese Internet censorship. She’s one of the founders (with Ethan Watch The Zuckerman) of the Global Voices Online blog network, which aggregates and translates news around the world that might otherwise go unheard. Video Is there a human rights penalty we pay for trusting basic human connection to the Internet? As a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, Rebecca MacKinnon looks at these big questions in her upcoming book, Consent of the Networked, “A treatise on the future of Learn liberty in the Internet age”. MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  45. 45. Kevin Slavin Algoworld expert Kevin Slavin navigates in the algoworld, the expanding space in our lives that is determined and run by algorithms. Are you addicted to the dead-simple numbers game Drop 7 or Facebook’s Parking Wars? Blame Kevin Slavin and the game development company, Area/Code, he co-founded in 2005, which makes clever game entertainments that enter the fabric of reality. All this fun is powered by algorithms -- as, increasingly, is our daily life. From the Google algorithms to the algos that give you “recommendations” online to those that automatically play the stock markets (and sometimes crash them): we may not realize it, but we live in the algoworld. Watch The Learn Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  46. 46. Tim HarfordUndercover economistTim Harford looks at familiar situations in unfamiliar ways to explain fundamental principles.He writes the ‘Undercover Economist’ column for the Financial Times,His new book, Adapt: Why Success Always Starts With Failure,He also presents the BBC radio series More or Less, a rare broadcast program devoted, as he says, to "the powerful, sometimes beautiful, often abused butever ubiquitous world of numbers." Watch The Learn Video MoreFriday, February 3, 12
  47. 47. Malcolm Gladwell WriterMalcolm Gladwell searches for the counterintuitive in what we all take to be the mundane: cookies, sneakers, pasta sauce. A New Yorker staff writer since 1996,he visits obscure laboratories and infomercial set kitchens as often as the hangouts of freelance cool-hunters -- a sort of pop-R&D gumshoe -- and for that hasbecome a star lecturer and bestselling author. Gladwell has written four books. The Tipping Point, which began as a New Yorker piece, applies the principles of epidemiology to crime (and sneaker sales), while Blink examines the unconscious processes that allow the mind to "thin slice" reality -- and make decisions in the blink of an eye. His third book, Outliers, questions the inevitabilities of success and identifies the relation of success to nature versus nurture. The newest work, What the Dog Saw and Other Adventures, is an anthology of his New Yorker contributions. LearnFriday, February 3, 12