TEDx Auckland 2012 – Kiwi ideas worth spreading

If you haven’t yet heard of TED, you need to check it out.  TED is a not for profit devoted to sharing ideas.  It started in 1984 as a conference bringing together three areas – technology, entertainment and design.  Since then it’s become even broader with two main conference per year in the US and UK as well as the TED Talks website, which hosts all of the TED presentations online, free for anyone to view.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share the TED experience.

On Saturday 6 October, Auckland ran it’s own TEDx event at the Aotea centre.  The speakers came from a variety of backgrounds, including scientists, technophiles, activists and creatives.  Twenty speakers and entertainers, including Diversityworks Trust Founder and Director Philip Patston, came together for an intense day of rapid-fire talks.

Not one to miss an event like this, I was there in the audience.  Over the course of the day I learned about current developments in nano-technology, New Zealand’s involvement in finding the Higgs boson, heard poetry, listened to one woman’s inspiring story of setting up a synchronised swimming group, found out how new AI technology is helping visually impaired people to navigate the world and how important it is to save the Ross Sea in Antarctica.

I was inspired.  I was exhausted!  And yet we still went out afterwards until midnight, talking and talking about ideas.  It was a wonderful experience.

Of his experience as a speaker, Patston blogged: “It’s not often in life that I feel a real sense of the many strands of my chequered career coming together into something coherent, purposeful and truly unique.

“Being able to combine my deep interest in people, society, nature, diversity, creativity, social change, humour and entertainment, was a great privilege.  And soon, when the talks are loaded to the internet, yet another, wider wave of sharing and connecting will begin, involving tens and hundreds of thousands of people, maybe even millions.

“It will change the world, in the way the world can only change, individual by single individual.”

Check out TED Talks here: www.TED.com

And learn more about TEDxAuckland here: http://www.tedxauckland.com/

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