News TED Conferences

Meet the three new TEDGlobal speakers, and a few others making the news

We are excited to introduce you to three new speakers who’ve been added to the program for TEDGlobal 2013, themed “Think Again.”

First, jazz-pop singer Jamie Cullum will take the stage to perform during session 10, “Imagined Beauty.” Just last week, Cullum released this nerdily adorable video — shot in one continuous Steadicam take — for the song “Everything You Didn’t Do.” Check it out above and marvel at the incredibly quick scene changes.

Photographer Fabian Oefner has also been added to the TEDGlobal program. Oefner brings together science and art in his stunning visualizations, which are meant to give us a sense of awe at the natural forces at work around us each and every day. In March, Oefner wowed us with the project “Black Hole,” which used the centripetal force of a spinning drill to splatter acrylic paint in the most beautiful patterns – all captured in millisecond through a unique sensor rig. See the images and how they were created on his website.

Finally, sustainability expert Johan Rockström is rounding out the program, taking the stage during session 8 “State of Nations.” Rockström recently published the book Bankrupting Nature: Denying Our Planetary Boundaries about the deep denial our culture is in about the magnitude of environmental challenges ahead. At TEDGlobal, he’ll speak about how this impending crisis may be an opportunity to spur innovative thinking.

Check out the full lineup of TEDGlobal 2013 speakers here, and read their detailed bios. Below, a few other speakers who made the news this week:

  • As we read the news that U.S. beekeepers lost 1 in 3 of honeybee this winter – due to a deadly combination of pesticides, fungicides, parasites, viruses and malnutrition – we couldn’t help but think of bee scholar Marla Spivak, who’ll speak during the session “Listening to Nature.” Her talk will no doubt be poignant given this recent development. She tells the TED Blog: “It’s good that the complexity of the bee issue to coming to light:  Bees are dying from multiple, interacting causes. Sometimes one factor is the driver (e.g., parasitic mites or viruses), sometimes poor nutrition, sometimes drought, sometimes pesticides, but in the end, all these factors interact to weaken bees.  Our bees, all of our bees (honey bees and all the thousands of species of wild bee pollinators) need help. While scientists figure out causes and solutions to the pathogens, parasites and pesticide problems, everyone can help by planting flowers and keeping them clean of pesticides.”
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  • In this great profile of frequent TED speaker Marco Tempest in Wired, Apollo Robbins — the so-called “gentleman thief” and session 4 speaker — stops by his loft and discusses the differences in their magic. Says Robbins, “Marco approaches the craft through his passion for innovation and technology. I approach the craft through the study of applied deception.”

In other news, we’ll be paying particular attention to session two, “Those Flying Things,” which focuses on debate about drones. While the session will feature fascinating demonstrations of how drones can be used to great end, we also can’t forget their potential to be used in war. Jody Williams, who gave the talk “A realistic vision for world peace” at TEDWomen, recently launched a campaign against robot warfare. She tells the TED Blog, “While we in the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots follow work on drones, we are not addressing them in the Campaign. We are seeking a pre-emptive ban on lethal robotic weapons on the land, in the sea and in the air that would be able to target and kill human beings on their own. With no human involvement. Terrifying.”