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The TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) conference is an annual event where leading thinkers and doers gather for inspiration. (More at TED.com) When you get time you should listen to this interesting 20 minute speech I heard a year ago given by the author of “Paradox of Choice”, Barry Schwartz. He summarized his book at the 2005 TED convention.VERY interesting speech about the abundance of choices we now have in affluent cultures and how it has impacted both or expectations and satisfaction.I think he is on to something with his observations about our resulting happiness in this new world of choices… http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/barry_schwartz_on_the_paradox_of_choice.html
While I do often like the potency of meanful statistics; like most folks, I rarely come across statistics which are very interesting, visually speaking, to view. Professor Hans Rawlin's certainly helped change this reality during his original Febuary 2006 TED Presentation, "Debunking third-world myths with the best stats you've ever seen." Even a catchy Title!
Incidentally, if you found his original lecture interesting, there is also a follow-up; given on March of 2007, called, “New insights on poverty and life around the world”. This is when he actually announces the fact that the UN was making all of its’ statistics public, by May of that year; he then shares some of the results he had yielded in advance; and he announces the browser based version of his software “Gapminder”.
I listen to almost every TED speech (podcast) released to the public! Honestly, I would love to attend the conference some year. Unfortunately, I believe you must maintain an annual TED membership to the tune of $6000.00. Otherwise you just have to be invited to speak…
He won the “TED Prize” this particular year, and the TED tradition is, you then give a speech containing your three biggest wishes for this world.The idea is, given the combined, intelligent, affluent ear of the attendees at TED, those wishes can be accomplished by the following year.And it often happens...
I enjoyed and wrote down his quote, 15 minutes in to his speech; “Idealism detached from action is just a dream, but idealism allied with pragmatism, with you rolling up your sleeves and making the world bend a bit, is very exciting.”