Skip to main content

I Love TED!

No, TED is not a person... TED is an annual conference held in California, who defines its mission as "ideas worth spreading". Basically, TED is a gathering of the smartest people in the world to discuss ideas about the world. Until about two years ago, the conference was only open to those who were lucky enough to be on the invite list and who had several thousand dollars to pay in membership fees. The fact that it took TED as long as it did to make its talks available to the public is somewhat mind boggling to me, as these are the talks that can truly change the world.

Nevertheless, now hundreds of talks are available on, with new ones added weekly; they cover just about every topic in the book, from poverty to music to business. My video iPod is loaded with dozens of TED talks, and so far I have to say there hasn't been a single one that has disappointed. With as much ignorance as there is in the world; with corporate media making it more difficult than ever to stay informed; and with American lifestyle making it unfortunately difficult for people to find time to read books, TED comes to the rescue. I have been watching these talks on the bus on my way to and from work - I can't imagine any better use of my time.

It may seem odd that anyone would want to watch lectures for entertainment, especially given all the terrible college professors and their lectures that could put a caffeine lightweight on ten cups of coffee to sleep; but if you think about that one professor who really dazzled the class, who's lectures you looked forward to every week... that is every speaker on TED. Check it out, if you have any intellectual curiosity I have a feeling you won't be disappointed.


Popular posts from this blog

In Praise of Southwest's 'C' Boarding Group

A few weeks ago I saw a tweet from someone complaining that their Southwest Airlines boarding pass had been assigned A20 (meaning they would be at least one of the first twenty passengers to board the plane). Apparently this person though they should have been assigned a higher number, less their flight experience be considerably spoiled.

Despite the complaints, Southwest has resisted demands to assign seats on its flights, a decision which I personally applaud. I'll admit that I was skeptical when they rolled out the newest boarding procedure, assigning both boarding groups and a line number; but in hindsight it seems like one of the best operational decisions they've ever made. If nothing else, it effectively eliminated the infamous "cattle call" whereby fliers were getting to airports hours in advance and sitting in line on the floor as if they were waiting for the midnight showing of the new Star Wars movie.

When I was an intern at Southwest Airlines last winter, I…

So You Want to be a Southwest Airlines Intern?

My personal website must have pretty decent SEO - because in the past year, I've received about two dozen emails from aspiring Southwest Airlines interns looking to draw on my experience in search of their own dream internship. In the past two weeks alone a few new emails have already started rolling in...

(from flickr user San Diego Shooter)

If you've found your way here, you might be hoping for the silver bullet; a secret tip that will propel you above the competition. Unfortunately, I do not know any inside secrets. I can only share my experience as an internship candidate about two years ago and, rather than responding individually to future emails I anticipate to receive, I hope that potential interns will find the information posted here valuable.

Understand: Southwest Airlines is a very unique company. The corporate culture at Southwest is truly unlike that of nearly every other company. But you probably already knew that, since it now seems mandatory for every management,…

Commuting Meets Technology

I'm finally out of the dark ages. I got an Android smartphone over the weekend and have since been in the process of exploring the Android apps market.  One thing I've immediately noticed is the really wide range of usefulness in the apps. For example, the WeatherBug app is fantastic. It automatically determines your location and gives you exact conditions for that location. On the other end of the spectrum, Google's Goggles app is supposed to be a type of 'visual search' where you snap of photo of something and Google searches for it. In each of my attempts to use it, the app hasn't returned any search results. I even took a photo of a bottle of Pepsi (figuring it as a common houseful item) and got nothing.

Somewhere in the middle is this app called Waze. Have a look at their 'guided tour':

Some people might look at it and comment on the amazing evolution of technology or on the incredible value of social networks. To me, Waze says something important ab…