TED TalksTED is a conference series about Technology, Entertainment and Design that has made most of their content available online for everyone to see. They offer a variety of lectures about the topics in question. These lectures are constrained in length and the speakers (some of the world's brightest minds) are invited to speak of what they believe to be most important. TED has also been franchising out their concept into what is called TEDx conferences, and many of the lectures held as these are also available. There are many TED videos worth watching, and new are released almost daily. If you do, as I, use iTunes to subscribe to podcasts I can recommend the TED-podcast for a daily inspiration and deeper understanding in matters that matter. Here are some videos I recommend and that I find interesting, some of them are a couple of years old, but they are still important and amazing. In this video Ken Robinson speaks about the importance of making a school system that also appreciates other forms of expression than the ones expressed typically by the right part of the brain. Not only is this movie interesting, it is also very funny. I laughed a lot watching this movie, not only because Sir Robinson is a funny man, but also because of some of the interesting truths this speech articulates which makes you reconsider thoughts and ideas you have. This video has really been viral after the death of Jobs earlier this year. It is curated through TED's best of the Internet. The speech was originally held and filmed at Stanford University. I think this is one of the most inspiring speeches to graduating students ever held, and I bear with me some of the ideas conveyed in this rhetorical masterpiece. This video is also an old classic. The Swedish Professor Hans Rosling has become an Internet star in his quest for giving people a more correct understanding of the contemporary world. Through his software GapMinder he gathers data and visualises them in a way that helps us understand the state of the nations and global issues through data. His speeches are also great as he contextualises the data in a good way, one of his latter ways of conveying knowledge is through using inventions such as his grand-mother's washing machine to explain important shifts in humans' 'lebenswelt'. This video shows technology already available for synthesising many images into huge image worlds. Microsoft's Photosynth technology is available, but the wow factor of this video documents some of what will be recorded in history when we are to understand the shift from the document based alphabetic web to the emerging. I think Blaise Aguera y Arcas also presents this technology in a good way. There are many ways of using an iPod, but Marco Tempest probably show you a way you have never seen before. Ingenious timing and creative use of technology creates a spectacular from everyday consumer electronics. This is true inspiration on how technology can be used in the arts and I hope to see many less known magicians making (christmas) party tricks application in the future.
RSAnimateRSAnimate is a collection of lectures held by great minds organised by the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, then edited and visualised. I wished that every educator could make such drawings in real-time as it is a great way of remembering things both visually and auditory. In the first video Matthew Taylor explores the meaning of 21st century enlightenment, how the idea might help us meet the challenges we face today, and the role that can be played by organisations such as the RSA. In the second Ken Robinson (who also has a great lecture at TED.com - linked above) speaks about educational paradigmes and how the school of today isn't suited for the world of tomorrow. I think all who have ever been to school have an opinion on how the education was conducted, and in this video Robinson addresses some important questions such as schools in an age of instant gratification and information overload.
The third movie I want you to see is one of the psychoanalyst and culture critic Slavoj Žižek. In the animation of a section named First as Tragedy, then as Farce (the name of one of his excellent books) he speaks about modern capitalism and how values are embedded into every aspect of the economic reality. Quite refreshing from a critical mind. You should also subscribe to his writings in The Guardian.