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A rugged, mobile wifi device brings the web to schools in Africa and beyond

A rugged, mobile wifi device brings the web to schools in Africa and beyond

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BRCK is best described as a “backup generator for the internet.” When it was announced, the idea of a rugged, rechargeable, mobile wifi device captured imaginations as a good way to bring robust connectivity to people in places with spotty infrastructure – particularly in developing countries. The device is the brainchild of Nairobi-based technology company Ushahidi, and was created partly out of []

Ordinary people in an extraordinary moment: Portraits of the men + women caught up in revolution in Ukraine

Ordinary people in an extraordinary moment: Portraits of the men + women caught up in revolution in Ukraine

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When Anastasia Taylor-Lind found herself in Kiev at the height of violence during Ukraine’s Independence Square protests, the documentary photographer decided to record not the fighting itself, but the human beings involved. Setting up a makeshift photo studio in an alleyway inside the barricaded square, she beckoned passers-by — the protesters themselves, and later the women who came []

Art that floats: A TED Fellow plans an immersive experience on a boat

Art that floats: A TED Fellow plans an immersive experience on a boat

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Constance Hockaday makes large-scale installations on open water. Identifying as a Chilean-American queer artist, Hockaday creates spaces that celebrate creative freedom and counterculture communities while defying gentrification. Take the Floating Peep Show — in which out-of-work drag queens and exotic dancers performed in the hulls of sailboats in the middle of San Francisco Bay. Now, Hockaday plans to turn a []

Invasion of the golden mussel: A TED Fellow wields genes to protect the Amazon

Invasion of the golden mussel: A TED Fellow wields genes to protect the Amazon

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Back in the ’90s, the golden mussel (Limnoperna fortunei) hitched a ride on ships traveling from Asia to South America. In the past decade and a half, the mussel has proliferated through South America’s river systems, destroying the native habitat and disrupting the operation of power plants and water treatment facilities. This invasive species now threatens the delicate []

Imagination in health and medicine? 11 fresh ideas from the TEDMED stage

Imagination in health and medicine? 11 fresh ideas from the TEDMED stage

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Prosthetics as sculpture, the maternal benefits of breast milk, Cuba’s radical approach to free medical education. These are just a few of the subjects tackled at TEDMED 2014: Unlocking Imagination, hosted last week simultaneously in San Francisco and Washington, DC, with a stage program directed by TED Fellow, physician, novelist and activist Nassim Assefi. On two stages []

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Fotokite! Sergei Lupashin brings aerial photography down to Earth

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Fotokite! Sergei Lupashin brings aerial photography down to Earth

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With his tethered quadcopter Fotokite, Russian-born inventor Sergei Lupashin plans to put aerial photography and the power of unmanned aerial vehicles in the hands of of journalists, architects and artists. Interestingly, this device was actually inspired by a 2011 protest in Russia. We talked to Lupashin to find out more about this inciting moment, and about how []

Orphans of the narrative: Bosnian photographer Ziyah Gafić documents the aftermath of war

Orphans of the narrative: Bosnian photographer Ziyah Gafić documents the aftermath of war

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Bosnian photojournalist Ziyah Gafić photographs the aftermath of conflict. (Watch his TED Talk, “Everyday objects, tragic histories.”) In his most recent book, Quest for Identity, he catalogs the belongings of Bosnia’s genocide victims, everyday objects like keys, books, combs and glasses that were exhumed from mass graves. The objects are still being used to identify the bodies []

On origami, Alzheimer’s & kindness: Global health expert Alanna Shaikh rethinks preparing for dementia

On origami, Alzheimer’s & kindness: Global health expert Alanna Shaikh rethinks preparing for dementia

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Global health expert Alanna Shaikh gave an unexpected and moving talk at TEDGlobal 2012, called “How I’m preparing to get Alzheimer’s.” In it, she told the story of her father’s struggle with the disease, and outlined some strategies she’d devised in case dementia struck her later in life, too. The TED Blog was curious: How is her experiment []

A perpetual tourist who makes his own souvenirs: The intriguing work of artist Jorge Mañes Rubio

A perpetual tourist who makes his own souvenirs: The intriguing work of artist Jorge Mañes Rubio

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From China’s underwater cities to Amsterdam’s neglected neighborhoods to Italy’s looted ruins, Jorge Mañes Rubio seeks out forsaken places and makes art that memorializes, reimagines and reengages them with the world. His project “Normal Pool Level” — which emerged from his exploration of the cities, towns and villages submerged by China’s Three Gorges Dam Project []

An overgrown asylum, an abandoned power plant and a handmade village on a river: TED Fellows create popup experiences in Berlin’s secret spaces

An overgrown asylum, an abandoned power plant and a handmade village on a river: TED Fellows create popup experiences in Berlin’s secret spaces

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A crumbling former asylum, a massive brick power station, and an alternative community built by hand by a river. In the hours before TEDBerlin Salon kicked off, three TED Fellows led conference attendees on a treasure hunt through the sprawling streets of sunny Berlin to these locations. Guided by the mobility app Moovel — which recommends the most effective []

Freebird: Juliana Machado Ferreira leads the charge against Brazil’s illegal wildlife trade

Freebird: Juliana Machado Ferreira leads the charge against Brazil’s illegal wildlife trade

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Conservation biologist Juliana Machado Ferreira uses genetic data to fight illegal wildlife trafficking in Brazil—a $2 billion-a-year business that affects 38 million animals. In 2012, Ferreira founded FREELAND Brasil to raise awareness of the devastating effects of keeping wild-caught songbirds, parrots and macaws—as well as to release rehabilitated animals and support rural communities vulnerable to wildlife traffickers. This []