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Taking Another Look: Session 11 at TEDGlobal2012

Posted by: Helen Walters


Click to watch the session-opening animation.

We all know that things aren’t always as they seem, and in this session we do a double take, re-examining both issues we may have considered set in stone as well as the unintended consequences of some seemingly inconsequential decisions that continue to echo through the ages.

In this session:

Maurizio Seracini is the director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture, and Archaeology at the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology. That’s quite a title. Above all, however, Seracini is a pioneer in using imaging technology to gain insight into works of art. For the past 30 years, he has used these techniques to search for The Battle of Anghiari, a Leonardo da Vinci mural that “disappeared” when the Palazzo Vecchio was remodeled by Giorgio Vasari. Convinced that the mural still exists, Seracini will tell us his story and describe his own, very personal journey of discovery in the name of art.

You’ve likely seen Becci Manson‘s work in the pages of magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar or the New York Times Magazine. She’s a retoucher, which means she helps elevate photography to new realms of creativity and imagination. But Manson isn’t here to wow us with high fashion. Instead, she’ll tell her story of visiting Japan in the months after the tsunami, and her work helping people to reconstruct the photographic remnants of their lives.

Mina Bissell is a distinguished scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory who has devoted her career to cancer. Specifically, on trying to understand the impact of environment on cancer. Her distinguished work has had a huge impact on a critical field of science. She’ll talk to us about the importance of taking another look at — and challenging — received wisdom.

Last year, Imogen Heap showed off her prototype of musical gloves on this very stage. This year she’s back again, only this time with a more fully developed version of the gloves, which allow her to control her own musical performance with, well, her hands. Prepare to be wowed.

John Wilbanks heads up the Consent to Research project, a clinical research study in which people donate their personal health data for broader computational analysis. He’ll talk about issues of dealing with massive amounts of data, and he’ll argue that sharing can provide a solid foundation for radical change.