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Posted at 10:20 AM ET, 03/10/2011

TED 2011 round up: The most inspiring ideas from the festival

By Melissa Bell
ted
Work by JR, winner of the TED Prize. (JR/Agence VU)

TED Talks, the conference in which speakers get 20 minutes to share "ideas worth spreading," has always reminded me of a Shel Silverstein poem. "If you are a dreamer, come in/ If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hoper, a prayer, a magic-bean-buyer/ If you're a pretender, come sit by my fire, for we have some flax-golden tales to spin/ Come in! Come in!"

Of course, not everyone can come in to the invite-only conference, but one of the Post's managing editors, Raju Narisetti, was there tweeting out some of the bold, big ideas. "Bring on the mental stimulation," Narisetti wrote. Here's a roundup of some of the talks that piqued his interest:

Wael Ghonim
"No one was a hero because everyone was a hero," Wael Ghonim says about the Revolution 2.0. Ghonim, the Google executive jailed during the Egyptian revolution spoke to TED via a satellite TEDx speech in Cairo. "As moving as his actions were during the revolution in Egypt. Standing ovation for video speech," Narisetti wrote.

Sarah Kay
"Nothing more beautiful than the ocean that kisses the shore no matter how many times it is sent away." Sarah Kay, a 22-year-old performance poet, was the youngest presenter at the event, but she was a "clear superstar" and "mesmerizing," Narisetti wrote.

Though her speech is not on TED yet, here's her poem, 'Hands,' from HBO's Def Jam poetry in 2007:

JR
"Banksy may not have shown up, but 27-year-old JR, dark glasses and hat, is here from Paris to pick up his TED Prize for art he began at 15," Narisetti wrote about the semi-anonymous street artist who won for his work posting huge photographs of people's faces on massive canvases. "JR pastes big wall photos of Israelis/ Palestinians doing same jobs. You can't tell who is which nationality," Narisetti said.

Here's JR's TED talk:

Salman Khan
Though Bill Gates fumbled his name during the introduction (saying "Saul"), Salman Khan has an intriguing idea he uses on 1 million students every month at his academy. Students watch educational videos at home, and do "homework" in the classroom with the teacher available to help. "Forget conventional teacher-student ratio. Focus on teacher time productively spent with each student," Khan said.

Quick hits:

"Candy Chang puts blank stickers in devastated New Orleans neighborhoods for people to fill in their wishes. Simple, effective. I wish this was _____________."

"Suzanne Lee grows sustainable jackets you wear using bacterial-cellulose. One hitch -- isn't waterproof yet so can't get caught in rain!"

"Galaxyzoo.org crowdsourcing to map outer space. 357,000 volunteers. Now working with SETI to find ET life. Seriously. Fun. Project."

"Watch all 10 Ads Worth Spreading at www.ted.com/aws"

By Melissa Bell  | March 10, 2011; 10:20 AM ET
Categories:  The Daily Catch  
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