40 brilliant idioms that simply can’t be translated literally

Language

40 brilliant idioms that simply can’t be translated literally

on

By Helene Batt and Kate Torgovnick May It’s a piece of cake. You can’t put lipstick on a pig. Why add fuel to the fire? Idioms are those phrases that mean more than the sum of their words. As our Open Translation Project volunteers translate TED Talks into 105 languages, they’re often challenged to translate English []

5 TED Talks that are racier than Fifty Shades of Grey

Entertainment

5 TED Talks that are racier than Fifty Shades of Grey

on

You might not think TED has anything to do with Fifty Shades of Grey. We didn’t either. Until we woke up this morning to find ourselves called out in The New Yorker’s scathing review of the movie: “You get dirtier talk in most action movies, and more genitalia in a TED talk on Renaissance sculpture.” []

Funny in 33 languages: The art of translating Maysoon Zayid’s hilarious TED Talk

Tales from the Translation Trenches

Funny in 33 languages: The art of translating Maysoon Zayid’s hilarious TED Talk

on

What’s funny in one language isn’t necessarily funny in another. Maysoon Zayid’s “I got 99 problems … palsy is just one” presented many challenges for TED translators bringing the hilarious talk into their language. As she tells stories from her life as a Palestinian-American comedian with cerebral palsy, Zayid cracks with wordplay. For translators, it’s []

What I learned from watching every TED-Ed Lesson

Education

What I learned from watching every TED-Ed Lesson

on

As a Production Intern at TED-Ed, a big part of my job has been to make sure none of our video files have any glitches. So for the past two months, I’ve watched every single TED-Ed Lesson — nearly 500 of them — at least twice. If TED-Ed were a menu, I’d have tried everything []

How to learn a new language: 7 secrets from TED Translators

Language

How to learn a new language: 7 secrets from TED Translators

on

By Krystian Aparta They say that children learn languages the best. But that doesn’t mean that adults should give up. We asked some of the polyglots in TED’s Open Translation Project to share their secrets to mastering a foreign language. Their best strategies distill into seven basic principles: Get real. Decide on a simple, attainable []

What’s the probability of finding your soulmate at a party? Read The Mathematics of Love

Entertainment

What’s the probability of finding your soulmate at a party? Read The Mathematics of Love

on

When TED asked Hannah Fry to write a book on the mathematics of finding true love, Fry happened to be — of all places — on her honeymoon. “[My husband and I] have been together for a really long time, so the whole newlywed thing didn’t quite apply,” she says. “But I did feel like []

25+ apps to make your everyday life easier

Insights from Our Office

25+ apps to make your everyday life easier

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At our small, fast-moving nonprofit company, everyone does a couple of jobs — and productivity apps help us manage roles that shift between coding, writing/designing and running a full-scale conference twice a year. We asked the TED staff what apps they can’t live without. And beyond the classics—Instagram, Google Maps, Spotify, Uber, Seamless—we found some []

Why I chose to stand up, alone: TED Fellow Boniface Mwangi on risking his life for justice in Kenya

Fellows Friday

Why I chose to stand up, alone: TED Fellow Boniface Mwangi on risking his life for justice in Kenya

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Award-winning photojournalist Boniface Mwangi captured the 2007-2008 post-election violence in Kenya unflinchingly through the lens of his camera. But the horrors he witnessed propelled him into a new career as an activist and artist. Here, Mwangi talks to the TED Blog about the events that led him to stand up against injustice, literally, rather than simply document it. Tell us about your experience on []

10 tips on how to make slides that communicate your idea, from TED’s in-house expert

Insights from Our Office

10 tips on how to make slides that communicate your idea, from TED’s in-house expert

on

  Aaron Weyenberg is the master of slide decks. Our UX Lead creates Keynote presentations that are both slick and charming—the kind that pull you in and keep you captivated, but in an understated way that helps you focus on what’s actually being said. He does this for his own presentations and for lots of []

Design for dying: Alison Killing on the architecture of death

Fellows Friday

Design for dying: Alison Killing on the architecture of death

on

Alison Killing thinks a lot about death … and specifically, how its ubiquitous, hidden presence shapes our cities. In Death in Venice, her June 2014 exhibition on the topic, Killing mapped London’s death-associated architectural features — hospitals, cemeteries, crematoria, and so on — making visible the invisible mechanics of death and dying. She asks us to consider: What might []

The TED2015 speaker lineup revealed

News

The TED2015 speaker lineup revealed

on

The phrase “truth or dare” is a false binary — facing the truth often requires daring action, and vice versa. That’s why, at TED2015: Truth and Dare, the two go hand-in-hand. TED2015 happens March 16-20 in Vancouver and Whistler, and we dare to think this will be the most provocative, invigorating, mind-shifting TED yet. The []

Are you being tracked? A TED Fellow on how law enforcement follows your movements, and why you should care

Fellows Friday

Are you being tracked? A TED Fellow on how law enforcement follows your movements, and why you should care

on

Did you know that across the United States, cameras are automatically taking pictures of your car’s license plate as you drive by, recording your plate number and your locations over time? In a chilling talk given at TEDGlobal 2014, civil liberties lawyer and TED Fellow Catherine Crump called attention to the ubiquity of mass surveillance technology []

Octopus’s garden: A TED Fellow with a radical approach to saving fisheries

Fellows Friday

Octopus’s garden: A TED Fellow with a radical approach to saving fisheries

on

Eco-entrepreneur Alasdair Harris is passionate about conserving marine biodiversity, and he’s doing it in unusual ways. While most marine conservationists focus on what’s in the water, Harris’ company Blue Ventures works with people in poverty-stricken coastal communities to engage them in rebuilding tropical fisheries and in the process of protecting both their ecosystems and livelihoods. The company’s approach: eco-tourism. We spoke []

10 tips for editing video

Insights from Our Office

10 tips for editing video

on

By Kari Mulholland* The techniques that video editors use to shape their content reveal a lot about how people create meaning in the world. Editors have a deep understanding of how people think, feel, remember and learn, and we use this knowledge to build powerful, moving stories and experiences. The best editing decisions come from []

Data becomes art in Julie Freeman’s “We Need Us”

Art

Data becomes art in Julie Freeman’s “We Need Us”

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. Artist Julie Freeman creates kinetic sculptures, compositions and animations from nature-generated data. Think: the motion of fish swimming, or the quiver of moths’ wings. This week, Freeman revealed a new piece of work from the TED Fellows stage. Called “We Need Us,” it’s an online, data-driven artwork that explores the nature of metadata. It’s now []

An inspiring way to learn English? By watching TED Talks

Language

An inspiring way to learn English? By watching TED Talks

on

“The world has a new mania — a mania for learning English,” said Jay Walker on the TED stage in 2009. English is accepted as a shared language of science, a language of global business and the language of the Internet, with at least 1.5 billion students learning it worldwide. So the TED Distribution team []