DAY 167: What do maths and music have in common?

What do maths and music have in common? TED speaker Clayton Cameron uses him time at TEDYouth to demonstrate the answer. I dislike maths but I love drum beats. Ahh the corundum when presented with a TED talk that explains maths behind the rhythm. This TED talk was part of the TEDYouth lineup, hence the emphasis on "A-rhythm-etic” I love how Clayton explains to the audience that maths is the backbone of music.  Okay so Clayton is a drummer and not a maths teacher, but if I would have had a maths teacher that broke it down for me like that, then I might of had a better appreciation for maths. When students in my maths  class in primary school groaned “why do we need to learn maths anyway?” answering “to create music” would have been a whole lot more effective than “because it’s in the curriculum" The truth is when I started to teach myself to read music I learnt the connection between maths and rhythm and this made me made dislike … [Read more...]

DAY 173: I have a confession to make about pickpocketing

For today's instalment of my 365 Days of TED challenge I watched a TED talk by Apollo Robbins on the art of misdirection demonstrated by pickpocketing a member of the audience! I first heard of Apollo Robbins when I was watching the National Geographic show Brain Games which he is a part of as co-producer and appears on as a deception specialist. Can you imagine introducing yourself to people, "Hi I'm a deception specialist" How awkward would that be! I have a confession to make. I am fascinated by pickpocketing. Okay so firstly let me clear one thing up. I am not fascinated by the crime aspect of pick-pocketing, not at all, I think that aspect of it is really low and I have no respect for anyway who thinks that it’s okay to take another person’s belonging just because they decide they want to. What does fascinate me though is that a pickpocketer can remove another person’s watch without them even realising. I mean how is that … [Read more...]

Day 119: Coming to a future near you – mini robots powered by your phone

Today's Ted talk both excites me and worries me. Keller Rinaudo talks about the future of robotics, robotics powered by mobile phones. Is technology moving too fast? Are we actually ready to embrace a world where robotics make up the everyday landscape? Personally, Im not too sure. Personal connections are already being eroded by the huge consumption of mobile phone usage. Will robotic technology free us up to mend those tattered relationships or will it further diminish human connection? What do you think? … [Read more...]

Day 115: A skateboard with a boost

In 2013 Sanjay Dastoor, founder of Boosted Boards, used his time at TED to talk about electric transportation, more specifically electric skateboards. I'm not really a skateboarding type of girl. I lie. I did have a classic TMNT skateboard as a kid which I loooved - it had flashing lights and everything! Sanjay's skateboard is a little more progressed than my retro skateboard. It's lighter than a bicycle, it's electric and can be plugged into a wall socket for 15 minutes to charge it up to give it enough power to travel at 30 kms per her (20 milers per hour) It's a definite step up from my ninja turtles skateboard!   … [Read more...]

Day 113: Emotional Correctness

Emotional correctness. What the heck is that? I have heard of political correctness but emotional correctness? Do we need another form of correctness? Sally Kohn thinks so and her TED talk "Let's talk emotional correctness" she explains why. Sally kicks off her TED talk by sharing a rather poignant truth for her, the better she does her job the more people hate her. What's her occupation? Sally says her role as "a gay talking head on Fox News" has made her the target for hate mail. Really vile hate mail. One would understand if this made Sally bitter and twisted but she has actually got a pretty profound lesson from it. "We spend so much time talking past each other and not enough time talking through our disagreements, and if we can start to find compassion for one another, then we have a shot at building common ground." How true is that! Sally uses the example that when a person might say they hate immigrants she tries to … [Read more...]

Day 105: What is the most perfect song to be played at a Ted education event?

Continuing on with my Ted talks on Music theme week I decided to watch a  Ted performance by musician John Legend singing the classic song 'True Colors.' In 2013 John Legend hosted Ted talks education and treated the audience to a cover of the Cyndi Lauper classic 'True Colors'. Watching his performance  in the context of being on a Ted stage was the first time I actually stopped to really listen to the lyrics and find the meaning behind the words - it's quite beautiful actually. It's about not being afraid to be your authentic self and  live true to yourself and who you really are.  I can't think of a more fitting song to be presented to teachers and students and a Ted education event. So often in school we are taught to think and act a certain way and maybe that's not leaving much room for kids to be themselves. If you haven't already watched John Legend's ted performance, hit play, sit back and let your mind wander with the … [Read more...]

Day 103: The DNA vending machine! Coming to a future near you!

Imagine a DNA vending machine where you the lucky consumer, can purchase a collectable DNA sample.  Each sample comes packaged with a collectable limited edition portrait of the human specimen.  Sounds like stuff of futurist sci-fi movies right? Not for artist Gabe Barcia-Colombo who gave a Ted talk showcasing his art installation the DNA vending machine. The DNA vending MachineWhat leads an artist to create a DNA Vending machine? For Gabe it was his fascination by the discovery of a community biolab in New York called Genspace. Genspace was a place open to the public were classes were held on topics such as extracting strawberry DNA.  Gabe took this class and found the beauty in strawberry DNA. This led him down the path of extracting human DNA. He was hooked to the point were he would hold DNA extracting parties amongst his friends on Friday nights.  Gabe would ultimately create an art installation called the DNA vending … [Read more...]

Day 99: Ditch the overseas holiday, observe stillness instead

Want to know a radical notion? How about the next time that you are planning a jet-setting holiday you stay home instead and observe stillness? Ted speaker Pico Iyer swears by the benefits of adopting stillness in your life. The travel bug hit Pico when he was a boy of nine years old. This ultimately led Pic to his career as a travel writer. As a travel writer he was privileged to see some truly amazing sights, such as the candlelit temples of Tibet or the seafronts of Havana. He wanted to bottle up the magic and bring it back home for his friends and to bring a touch of clarity into his own life but there was a flaw in his plan. Your world and my world is different We all experience the world in different ways. Our history, our truths, our beliefs shape how we perceive everything around us. Pico explains this with a  great analogy.  He says that you can take an angry man to the Himalayas but he will just complain about the food. … [Read more...]

Day 91: How Joe Kowan conquered stage fright. His Ted talk explains it all.

Day 91- How Joe Kowan conquered stage fright. His Ted talk explains it all.

Imagine being a would-be musician with stage fright? Well Joe Kowan didn’t have to imagine it, that was his reality for the longest time.  He would write songs and only play them for himself as he was too afraid to show the world, or his roommates who were in the next room! On the week of his 30’s birthday he decided to conquer his fear once and for all. In his Ted talk “How I beat stage fright” Joe shares with us exactly how he got over his fear and got on that stage. On the week of his thirtieth birthday Joe decided he couldn’t let stage fright dictate his life any more. Plucking up every ounce of courage he had, Joe went to an open open mic event. Now if this were a movie, maybe Joe would have beaten his stage fright there and then and maybe he would have even received a standing ovation, but this is real life. Joe’s  first experience as a solo singer-writer was a mess. His body gave way to a wavering voice and he starts to … [Read more...]