As soon as I heard TED was coming to Nashville (in the form of TEDxNashville), I knew I had to get involved. TED had been my own personal Facebook-style addiction for almost two years now, i.e., while my wife learned which of our friends posted the latest round of baby photos on the popular social networking site, I was parked on the couch with my laptop watching video after video on TED.com. I even created a DIY Smartboard in my wife’s first grade classroom after watching Johnny Lee’s Wiimote wizardry.
In other words, I’m obsessed.
Alright, alright. Let me back up. For the uninitiated, TED, which stands for Technology, Entertainment & Design, is a conference dedicated to the mantra “Ideas Worth Spreading.” It began as an annual conference in 1984, but now its Web site offers talks on topics as varied as bionic legs, a floating ball of plastic in the Pacific Ocean and the different ways ambient sound affects us.
TEDxNashville is a local, independently organized TED-style conference which licenses TED’s namesake and presents timely topics free from any commercial or political agenda. It’s a collaborative forum, a gathering of minds, that’s meant to inform and inspire.
For my part, I’ll be contributing a bit of copywriting and creative help to the marketing and PR teams. On top of that, Parthenon Publishing has agreed to become a sponsor. We’re thrilled to be on board.
I polled the office and here are a few of our favorite TED talks:
Elizabeth Gilbert on Genius
Alain de Botton: A kinder, gentler philosophy of success
David Blaine: How I Held My Breath for 17 Minutes
Seats are limited, so get yours through TEDxNashville’s Web site.