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TED Day 2 – Session 2

Theme: The World Flattens

1. Speaker One: Roger Mandle
– First slide featured Juliet Serem a Kenyan student a RISD – she represented the future ” a citizen of the world” and Tom Friedman’s the world is flat.
– Design for the future is about responsible and responsive design. Also design as process, education, art & craft, economic development strategy, meaning.
– Spoke about Dan Pink and the coming dominance of the “age of creativity.”
– We are entering the age of consilience: integration of the elements of the left and the right brain – of arts and science.
– What is consilience design? Ultimate example is Leonardo da Vinci and nature. Design in nature is elegantly economical – continuously evolving toward greater refinement.
– Spoke about RISD’s new projects along these lines including the Universal Kitchen Design and sustainable design projects.
– Recommendations: teach art and design throughout kindergarten to high school; teach integrative curricular; set up a national design council.

2) Speaker: Mena Trott (co-founder of Movable Type)
– She’s a blogger www.dollarshort.org
– She started in 2001, was working in design but unhappy, English major in college and missed writing. When she started her blog, her goal was to be famous to people on the internet and to win an award because she’s never won an award before and she did. Her blog was about her personal stories and that’s what interests her about blogging, people that tell stories.
– Blogs, so what? They are records of who you are, you’re person and records of other people. Think about it on a global scale especially as more people get access – these are historical records and this is about the world flattening.

3) Speaker: Richard Baraniuk
– Working on Open source tools and content for education.
– E.g. engineering professors working on a super-engineering text book that can be shared around the world.
– Working with Teacher Without Borders to develop teaching materials. But focusing on more than providing free content – goal is to contextualize and make it locally relevant.
– Spoke about “Burn” – publishing on demand based on the repository at Connexions. Community-authored materials that are modular/customized and that are available at a very low cost. Changes the economics of publishing and about cutting out the middleman.
– What are the enablers/what’s making this happen? 1) Technology – XML in particular, provides a common framework for sharing…think about it as Lego blocks, allows customization, allows interconnectivity. 2) Intellectual Property – ability to mix, share, and burn. Availability of framework that makes sharing safe – Creative Commons.
– What are the challenges: 1) Quality control – anyone can contribute anything. Solution = peer review. They are now designing social software for individual peer review process.

4) Speaker: Peter Gabriel (Genesis band member, now solo artist, founder of Witness – a site that trains human right defenders to document and film instances of human rights abuse).
– Motivation behind Witness – to prevent the denial and burial of abuse. These stories must not be forgotten.
– Goal is to now integrate camera phones since technology is more user-friendly and cheaper.

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