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Experts at Stanford’s first TEDx conference showcase ‘ideas worth sharing’

By Vignesh Ramachandran | 20 May 2012

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Stanford hosts its first TEDx event

Hundreds gathered at Stanford on Saturday, for the campus’ first-ever TEDx conference. Nearly 30 scientists, musicians, doctors, dancers and other experts gave 18-minute presentations: "Ideas worth sharing."

Storified by Peninsula Press · Mon, May 21 2012 01:16:35

Stanford University hosted its first TEDx conference Saturday, bringing in a sold-out crowd and almost 30 presentations to the Graduate School of Business on the Palo Alto campus.

TED is a non-profit organization that puts together two major conferences each year where movers, shakers and thought leaders give 18-minute talks on the subjects of their choice. The organization created TEDx events to simulate the TED conference experience at the local level. The “x” in TEDx indicates that a conference is an “independently organized TED event.” According to TED organizers, there were 212 TEDx events in 66 countries in April alone. Though independently organized, the brand and feel of TED is present in these smaller conferences.

Saturday’s TEDx Stanford event featured speakers and performers, all of whom had a Stanford University connection. Many were Stanford alums or professors. From avatars to cancer detection, and comedy to interpretive dance about the cosmos, TEDx Stanford had something for everyone.
TEDxStanford: Illumination (May 19, 2012)stanforduniversity
Stanford held the “STAN” conference in May 2011, which served as a prototype for a TED-style event. A year later, TEDx Stanford became a reality. On Friday, presenters prepped for their big moments on stage.
Onstage at #TEDxStanford, getting ready for tomorrow. Watch the live stream: http://new.livestream.com/tedx/tedxstanford http://pic.twitter.com/ncHtZum6kleinimp
Dress rehearsal for TEDxStanford this evening. What a fascinating lineup of speakers! You can watch it live here http://tedx.stanford.edu/live-streamTina Seelig
The conference began at 11 a.m. Saturday.
Soundchecking bright & early for #TEDxStanford. Love working with really good tech people. http://ping.fm/cUqwCVienna Teng
On my way to TEDxStanford… See you there!Andreas Weigend
The event sold out in a few hours the day tickets went on sale in April. For those not lucky enough to snag a ticket, the entire day was streamed live online. The day’s hosts were David Hornik, venture capitalist at August Capital, and June Cohen, director of TED Media. Both are Stanford alumni.
@aweigend @junecohen According to June there have been 4,000 TEDx events and there are now between 5 and 8 a day. Amazing.David Hornik
In Palo Alto, getting ready to host #TEDxStanford today. Excited! You can watch the live stream here, from 11AM PST: http://is.gd/SUsN2CJune Cohen
Full house at #TEDxStanford! http://pic.twitter.com/ChBbaxiYTEDxStanford
waiting for some nice talks at #tedx http://pic.twitter.com/6p4MwAsUPedro Beltrao
#TEDxStanford gets underway. Energy is high.Julie Lythcott-Haims
The first part of the conference was themed: “Cultivate: Yourself and Your World.” Taiko drummers kicked off the day with an energizing performance.
Stanford’s Taiko drummer is now playing. They’re simply cool!!!StudentPreneur.co
Stanford Taiko drummers open the show with a bang #TEDxStanford http://pic.twitter.com/vHjUM9BITEDxStanford
Co-host June Cohen told the audience to put their smartphones away, in order to focus on the presentations.
Co-host @junecohen says we’re very skilled at "continuous, partial attention" #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
The first presentation began with yoga expert Louis Jackson leading the audience in a meditative breathing exercise.
#TEDxStanford Lewis Jackson yoga practitioner leading the entire group in yoga lesson–belly breath to help everyone relaxEsther Wojcicki
Joel Stein, TIME Magazine contributor and Stanford alum (’93 / MA ’94), shared funny stories about experiences he does not believe can be taught.
Photo: Joel Stein on his Stupid Quest for Masculinity #tedxstanford (Taken with Instagram at Cemex… http://tmblr.co/ZvhQexLmWv1yAmina Horozic
#tedxstanford Joel Stein on his manventures. Hilarious!Anaïs Saint-Jude
"My identity is the sum of my experiences" -@thejoelstein "A man only learns by doing" #TEDxStandordStanford Business
Associate Professor of Communication at Stanford, Jeremy Bailenson, talked about virtual reality and his Virtual Human Interaction Lab. He explained how avatars can be used as tools for social change: such as transforming health care or promoting energy conservation.
Hearing Jeremy Bailenson, talking about Stanford virtual reality lab http://bit.ly/JRwdJ #TEDxStanfordJackieGerstein Ed.D.
very cool talk by Jeremy Bailenson about avatars: Link to lab http://vhil.stanford.edu/projects/ #tedxstanfordTim Gluz
"It is now the case that I could build a virtual version of anyone in this room and others would think it was you" -Bailenson #TEDxStanfordStanford Business
#TEDxStanford Jeremy Bailenson a cognitive psychologist and expert on human interaction in virtual environment.Nahid Fattahi
Krista Donaldson, a Stanford alum, current lecturer in the Stanford d.school and CEO of D-Rev, spoke about engineering, innovation and making impact in the developing world.
"Innovation as we know it is not having impact in the world that most needs it." -Krista Donaldson #TEDxStanfordJosemaría Siota
Krista Donaldson improve the health and incomes of ppl living on less than $4 a day. #innovation #TEDxStanfordNahid Fattahi
Empathy and user-centric design is important to develop context-appropriate innovation -CEO of @d_rev_org Krista Donaldson #TEDxStanfordEntrepreneurship
Cellist Ila Shon graced the audience’s ears with a solo music performance.
Ila Shon, 14 years old world class musician who played in carnegie hall is now playing cello at #TEDxStanfordStudentPreneur.co
Dr. Sanjiv Sam Gambhir, chair of radiology at the Stanford School of Medicine, looked to the future of cancer detection. He stressed the importance of implementing technology for early detection of disease in the body.
RT @TEDxStanford: "There’s a good reason for the ‘re’ in ‘research’" – Dr. Sanjiv Sam Gambhir #TEDxStanfordStanford Engineering
#TEDxStanford speaker Dr. Sam Gambhir: We spend 100x more paying for things late in the game, including cancer, research, and philanthropy.Social Innovation
"The advantage of being @Stanford, is we have some of the best minds working together to solve these types of problems" #TEDxStanfordStanford Business
The future! #TEDxStanford http://pic.twitter.com/ZgGutF2vSnapchat
"Who came the farthest?" asks @junecohen – answer from the audience: "London" #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Loving TEDx at Stanford…behavior-modifying avatars…low cost jaundice treatments for babies in third world countries….and nanotechnologies to diagnose cancers pre stage 1. (they will archive it)….Barbara Bishop
Banny Banerjee, director of the Stanford Design Program, talked about reframing questions and how they can be structured beyond the typical black-and-white approach.
It’s not about ‘X verses Y’ This is a wrong question- the question is: how can we have ‘X with Y’jeany777
@PeninsuPress Really enjoyed Banny Banerjee’s talk about fishhook questionsJaclyn Le
Contentedness = f(Perception of Reality – Shape of Desire) #TEDxStanford Banny BanerjeeBrett Grendahl
+1 RT @SocInnovators Banny Banerjee at #TEDxStanford: "Silicon Valley would not be the same place without its deep appreciation of failure."Rawan Da’as
Head of Improv at Stanford, Dan Klein, inspired the audience to apply improvisation to life.
"You are all improvisors!" – Drama/improv professor Dan Klein’s opening statement #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
we all try to build scripts for days we are improvising #TEDxStanfordpdeverak
RT @TEDxStanford: "Accept the offers the world gives you." – Dan Klein #TEDxStanfordpdeverak
Co-host David Hornik entertained the audience, singing all the event sponsors’ names aloud, before the lunch break.
Feeling incredibly inspired at @TEDxStanford today. Ready for Session II "Captivate" #TEDxstanfordJaclyn Le
TEDx Stanford is truly an amazing experience.Zani Nesvacil
#TEDxStanford 2nd session gets underway with a storytelling theme called Captivate. Tom Brokaw sits in front of me. Nbd.Julie Lythcott-Haims
The second part of the conference was called: “Captivate: The Power of a Great Story.” It started with a unique music performance from Pamela Z, a performer, composer and media artist.
Pamela Z is fusing music and technology before our eyes (and ears) #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Current Stanford undergraduate student Martha Muña talked about her work with orphanages in Ghana. Muña is the National Student Director of the nonprofit KaeMe Foundation, which helps place orphans in loving homes.
"80% of children in orphanages in Ghana are not actually orphans" – Martha Muña #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
JD Schramm, a lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, spoke during a past TED presentation. That talk was played on the video projector for Saturday’s audience.
Flashback to 2011 #TEDtalk from @jdschramm #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
@JDSchramm’s Break the silence for suicide survivors http://youtu.be/Hy4yby7ZAd0 shown at #TEDxStanfordJackieGerstein Ed.D.
Author Justin Torres, a current Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford, recounted the personal inspiration for his novel. His advice to the audience on storytelling: keep it messy and keep it painful.
Justin Torres http://www.justin-torres.com/, telling his story about depression and a troubled mind#TEDxStanfordEsther Wojcicki
Broadway composer/playwright and Stanford alum Jay Kuo presented a musical number, along with Katherine Cooper and Alex Rodriguez. Kuo’s first musical is expected to debut on Broadway in 2013.
The reason people burst out into song is because any other form of expression is insufficient. –Jay Kuo #TEDxStanfordKana Hammon
Stanford School of Medicine’s Dr. Sherry Wren said society must reject the current dogma that surgery is not part of public health. She made her case to the audience, using her own experiences practicing medicne in the developing world.
Surgery = neglected stepchild of public health. The perception is that surgery is not part if basic care. –Dr. Sherry Wren #TEDxStanfordKana Hammon
Dr. Sherry Wren asks: "Why isn’t surgery part of the global healthcare agenda?" at #TEDxStanfordStanford Business
Some pretty rough reality checks from Dr. Sherry Wren. Interesting to think of surgery as a basic need. #TEDxStanford #GlobalHealthBen Peterson
Dr. Sherry Wren: Surgery needs to be a part of the global healthcare agenda – it is a basic human need. #TEDxStanfordSocial Innovation
"You cannot contemplate basic healthcare without surgical care" -Dr. Sherry Wren #TEDxStanfordJosemaría Siota
Back pain expert Esther Gokhale demonstrated the optimal sitting position and how audience members could prevent back pain.
#TEDxStanford Esther Gokhale talking about how to avoid back pain. We need to sit up straight…don’t sit on your tailhttp://egwellness.com/Esther Wojcicki
Former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw and his daughter, Dr. Jennifer Brokaw (Stanford alum), took the stage to discuss the importance of having living wills and advanced care directives in place in case of emergency.
"My daughter was at @Stanford as a student; I was here only w/ tuition. They let me visit my tuition sometime." -Tom Brokaw at #TEDxStanfordStanford Business
Tom Brokaw, I have always admired him. interviewing his well achieved daughter Dr. Jennifer Brokaw #TEDxStanford #innovationNahid Fattahi
The Brokaws had an unscripted conversation about a serious topic.
Tom and Jennifer Brokaw at #TEDxStanford having a conversation about end of lifePedro Beltrao
"Only 30% of Americans have prepared an advanced directive or living will." – Jennifer Brokaw at #TEDxStanfordSocial Innovation
Dr. Jennifer Brokaw asks "What does quality of life mean to you Dad?" Living wills tend to be done by lawyers http://tedx.stanford.edu/live-stream/Esther Wojcicki
Tom Brokaw suggested the audience focus on “adding life to your years, not years to your life.”
Jason Mayden, the senior footwear/innovation designer at Nike’s Jordan Brand, share the personal tradgedy that inspired him on the path to his dream career.
Turn your weakness into your strength. Jason did that by designed Michael Jordan’s shoes. OMG he’s crying!! #TEDxStanfordStudentPreneur.co
"Embrace the power of being you." -Jason Mayden — Not as easy as it sounds. Very vulnerable talk from him. #TEDxStanford #NikeBen Peterson
Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Baba Shiv focused his talk around the metaphoric question of being in the driver’s seat or the passenger’s seat in life.
@StanfordBiz be in driver’s seat with big decisions but consensus of direction and destination will dictate speed. #TEDxStanfordVala Afshar
Stanford student favorite and the university’s Dean of Freshmen and Undergraduate Advising, Julie Lythcott-Haims, questioned whether modern-day 18 to 24-year-olds are capable of entering the world as adults. She explained her belief that young people in the American middle and upper middle class have grown up in a “padded cell of childhood.”
@DeanJulie at #TEDxStanford: "It’s our job as parents to put ourselves out of a job & we succeed only if we’ve raised an independent child."Social Innovation
After a short afternoon break, the third section of the conference began: “Celebrate: Taking it with you.” Mark Applebaum, associate professor of music at Stanford, presented a charismatic talk through music and his “Mouseketeer” instrument.
I won’t believe that an improv guy like Mark Applebaum gets nervous. #TEDxStanfordJosephine Huynh
"I use boredom as a catalyst for innovation and creativity" – #TEDxStanford’s Mark ApplebaumSocial Innovation
Words cannot describe the sounds Mark Applebaum is making on stage right now #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Live at TEDx Stanford, this guy is playing a comb with a violin bow http://pic.twitter.com/Bjo2rAbOB h Schaefer
Hand gestures synchronized to music from Mark Applebaum: you decide, is this music? #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
The co-founder/board chair of the Quest Scholars Program and QuestBridge, Ana Rowena McCullough, said that young people should “aim at life” instead of a college application. She proposed a change to the high school experience.
Imagine a nation of passionate, creative, and productive young people – Ana Rowena McCullough #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Stanford alum and singer/songwriter Vienna Teng took the stage and soon got the audience singing along.
Vienna Tang at TEDx StanfordTamer Shabani Photography
Vienna Teng, singer/songwriter recorded debut her album while working at Cisco. She’s amazing! Watch: http://cot.ag/J5wspD #TEDxStanfordStanford Engineering
The entire audience is singing along with @viennateng #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
a rare pleasure to sing along with Vienna Teng #TEDxStanford #soonlovesoon @ Cemex Auditorium http://instagr.am/p/K0_-wIPT9_/LeslieW
J. Christian Gerdes shared his passion for autonomous cars and robotic race cars. Gerdes works in the Stanford School of Engineering and is the director of the Center for Automotive Research.
Prof. Gerdes on self-driving vehicles: "We want to design a car that can avoid any accident that can be physically avoided." #TEDxStanfordStanford Business
I’m scared to see that the Standford prof defining future autonomous vehicles is running Windows XP #tedxstanfordJames Joaquin
#TEDxStanford this day rocks! What a blessing to have great minds and great ideas spread.JD Schramm
"Was it a Ted moment or a Stanford moment…. A Tedx Stanford moment."Nishant Jonathan Mathew Jacob
Stanford philosophy professor Ken Taylor inspired the audience to think more deeply about philosophy.
"Philosophy is about disciplining your mind to seek truth always," says Prof Ken Taylor from @philosophy_talk  #tedxstanfordStanford Engineering
Global healthcare advocate and Stanford alum Rayden Llano framed his talk around a very personal story: his grandmother’s inability to pay for cancer treatment.
What do we as a society value? What do we choose? – Rayden Llano’s "quiet inspiration," as @junecohen calls it #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Rayden Llano at TEDx StanfordTamer Shabani Photography
Tina Seelig, executive director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, spoke about redefining creativity.
"The question you ask is the framing to which the answers will fall." – @tseelig #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
http://twitsnaps.com/1108107 Polished and informative! @Stanford\’s Tech Ventures @TSeelig rocking\’ it at #tedxstanford #tedx #tedJennifer Barr
"Everyone has the key to their innovation engine – it’s up to them to turn it." – @tseelig #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
Aleta Hayes and the Chocolate Heads Movement Band topped off the day with a final interpretive dance performance.
Last but certainly not least: Aleta Hayes and the Chocolate Heads Movement Band #TEDxStanfordTEDxStanford
33Tamer Shabani Photography
45Tamer Shabani Photography
Congrats on gr8 event RT @TEDxStanford: "Everyone has key to their innovation engine – it’s up to them to turn it." – @tseelig #TEDxStanfordTEDx Berkeley
48Tamer Shabani Photography
Good day with #tedxstanford! Looking forward to organizing TEDxStanford 2013! http://instagr.am/p/K1MRJxQr24/Roger Chen
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