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Illuminated – Reflecting on the Brilliance of TEDxPeachtree 2014

Illuminated – Reflecting on the Brilliance of TEDxPeachtree 2014

The theme of this year’s TEDxPeachtree was “illuminate,” but it is nearly impossible to use one word to describe the October 17th gathering. Brainwave-derived art, personalized cancer treatment, artificial intelligence, talking dogs, mathematical origami and other amazing skills and discoveries were presented to a captivated audience at the Buckhead Theatre in Atlanta. Thirteen men and women, along with a canine, came to the stage in four segments: Frontiers, The Lab, Sensory Percussions, and Play. They presented their solutions, ideas, and talents to prove that we do not have to go with the status quo; attendees saw firsthand how one person’s idea can ignite great change in our world.

In Frontiers, the presenters had asked, “What if?” to possible solutions to a myriad of problems, and allowed their passions run free in pursuit of answering those questions. Keith McGreggor explained fractal thinking and showed us how our ability to see novelty and abstraction separates us from artificial intelligence, a multi-layered concept he was able to effortlessly explain to the audience.

One attendee commented, “Keith’s was my favorite talk. His thought process on thought processes was great. And he was able to explain it in words that everyone can understand.”

Shannon Zirbel‘s love of space and origami  led her to the creation of the Hanaflex design used in the deployment of NASA solar arrays. The PhD candidate’s work in compliant mechanism theory in space technology has led to the creation of lightweight solutions to problems in advancing the exploration of the final frontier.

But the crowd favorite easily went to the dogs, literally. DSC08570 copyMelody Moore Jackson wowed the audience with her presentation of an interactive vest for service dogs that takes their ability to communicate well beyond the typical nudges and leading of seeing eye dogs. In a TEDx first, the speaker was joined onstage by man’s best friend; Blitz the Border Collie tugged a pull cord mechanism attached to her vest and spoke by triggering a recorded call for help.

In The Lab, our minds were introduced to people who brought light to concepts of cancer, agriculture and livestock and the human mind. Erico Mattos’s discovery of the use of biofeedback in hydroponics to know when plants have had enough sun had many in the audience talking. “The plants can turn the light on and off? That is unreal,” commented one young woman.

Ion Popian demonstrated how he transforms brainwaves into tangible objects and Adam Marcus spoke on taking the process of cancer treatment to a personal level. His concept of using individualized systems of care that utilize old and new therapies is changing the way doctors battle the disease. Video of the 2013 TED Talk by 13-year old Richard Turere brought smiles with his tale of using solar energy, and a bit of ingenuity to keep the lions away from his family’s cattle in Kenya. His youthful exuberance and inventive mind gave a glimpse into the future of bright TED talent we can expect to see in the future.

TEDxPeachtree is not complete without the inclusion of entertainment to inspire audience members. HeaveN Beatbox and Christopher Erk brought their gifts of vocal percussion and dance in the Sensory Percussions and Play sections of the program. Apart, their performances were brilliant; together onstage, this duo left attendees in awe.

The second half of the day included passive learning success stories from VR expert Thad Starner, body owning champion Abby Norman, sun gazer Genna Duberstein, and the final talk of the day by Chantelle Rytter. Her call for civic play as an impetus for community building segued into a grand finale of glowing lanterns and music from The Wasted Potential Brass Band.

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Inspired and illuminated, attendees left the day’s event wondering, “How can they possible top that?” Guess they’ll just have to wait until TEDxPeachtree 2015 to find out!

 

M.PinkeltonPhotoMaria Pinkelton is the Communication Specialist for the Center for Leadership in Disability at Georgia State University. She lives in Decatur with her husband and son, along with a fine collection of books, craft beers and size 11 shoes.

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How to Host a TEDxPT Party…or Simply Watch From Afar

It’s here. You’ve waited all year for this day. You’ve followed the speakers’ Twitter and Facebook feeds, Googled them, checked Wikipedia, and maybe even followed them on Instagram. These educated experts will be speaking with passion and insight into their areas of focus, ready and willing to share their ideas.

There is only one problem…you can’t attend the event in person. Your dream of applauding your favorite presenter after he or she finishes speaking seems out of reach now.

But, wait, our creative team has a solution! Thanks to technology, you can watch live, right along with the audience inside of the Buckhead Theatre on October 17. Check out the TEDxPeachtree Live Cast which will be streaming the talks live beginning at 9:00 AM EST.

But, why stop at watching by yourself. Consider shining the light on local talent in Atlanta and illuminating new ideas by throwing a TEDx Peachtree Viewing Party. We thought we’d make a step-by-step guide to get you pumped for the big day.

  • Invite some friends to watch with you.

Atlanta does community really, really well; we know you have lots of awesome friends and neighbors in your community. What a great way to engage co-workers, neighbors, and friends this Friday, by inviting them to take part in 6th annual TEDx Peachtree event.

  • Prepare yourself for making October 17th a Brain Gain Day!

If you haven’t already checked out our speakers, now’s your chance. And then share the speaker spotlight blog posts below with your friends!

Shannon Zirbel            HeaveN Beatbox            Christopher Erk

Erico Mattos                 Melody Jackson             Abby Norman

Adam Marcus               Thad Starner                   Genna Duberstein

Chantelle Rytter           Keith McGreggor           Derek Fridman

Ion Popian 

  • Get comfortable and grab a pen. Or an iPad.

Put on a pot of tea, grab a cup of joe and your favorite pen or device. With so many new ideas, talent, products and solutions, we know you’ll want to take notes.

  • Ready. Set. Go!

It’s time! Set your alarm to 9:00 AM and then click the lovely link provided HERE!

  • Shout out!

Our social media team (and the rest of the world!) can’t wait to hear from you during the event. So make sure that you don’t forget to hashtag your photos, tweets, and posts with #TEDxPT and tag us @tedxpeachtree.

 

10346225_604704979992_4533583507906774147_nDeborah Lubbe is the Institute and Evaluation Program Coordinator for Wellspring Living in Atlanta, Georgia. Deborah has worked with several social enterprises and nonprofits in both the US and India. Her heart is to identify needs and cultivate effective and manageable solutions for both organizations and individuals. She lives in Smyrna with her husband and likes food truck Tuesdays, organized closets, French press coffee, and her 110 lb Old English Mastiff Oliver.

 

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TEDxPeachtree 2014 Illuminate Line-Up

TEDxPeachtree 2014 Illuminate Line-Up

We hope you’ve enjoyed “meeting” our speakers over the last couple of months as we’ve counted down to TEDxPeachtree 2014. In case you’ve missed any of our introductions, it’s not too late to check out this year’s presenting team.  Here are 140 characters to share why I’m over the moon about these speakers and how their ideas will illuminate Atlanta this Friday.

 

sun skyline

 

Your turn! Give us 140 characters about why you’re excited to be there. Follow @TEDxPeachtree and send out some love and encouragement to our speakers!

 

 

Nia_Baker_BioPicNia Baker has been thrilled to serve as the TEDxPeachtree Content Manager this year. She has had roots in Atlanta almost ten years, the longest she’s lived anywhere, and has worked in the nonprofit sector for the last five, focusing on effective systems and creative communication. She will complete her Masters in Professional Counseling and Trauma Specialization this spring and believes in the dignity of each experience. Nia enjoys running past Atlanta street art, steaming French press coffee, and a really effective adjective.

 

 

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