Biology

A map of the brain: Allan Jones on TED.com

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How can we begin to understand the way the brain works? The same way we begin to understand a city: by making a map. In this visually stunning talk, Allan Jones shows how his team is mapping which genes are turned on in each tiny region, and how it all connects up. (Recorded at TEDGlobal 2011, []

Art

High-tech art (with a sense of humor): Aparna Rao on TED.com

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Artist and TED Fellow Aparna Rao re-imagines the familiar in surprising, often humorous ways. With her collaborator Soren Pors, Rao creates high-tech art installations — a typewriter that sends emails, a camera that tracks you through the room only to make you invisible on screen — that put a playful spin on ordinary objects and []

Biology

The line between life and not-life: Martin Hanczyc on TED.com

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In his lab, Martin Hanczyc makes “protocells,” experimental blobs of chemicals that behave like living cells. His work demonstrates how life might have first occurred on Earth … and perhaps elsewhere too. (Recorded at TEDSalon Spring 2011, “Beauty/Complexity,” May 2011, in London, UK. Duration: 14:38) Watch Martin Hanczyc’s talk on TED.com, where you can download []

Culture

The right to understand: Sandra Fisher-Martins on TED.com

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Medical, legal, and financial documents should be easy to read, but too often they aren’t. With spot-on (and funny) examples, Sandra Fisher Martins shows how overly complex language separates us from the information we need — and three steps to change that. In Portuguese with English subtitles. (Recorded at TEDxO’Porto, March 2011, in O’Porto, Portugal. Duration: []

Technology

TED.com planned outage 7pm Eastern today

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To upgrade is human … TED.com will be offline for maintenance at 7pm Eastern time this evening for two hours of maintenance. If you need your TED fix while we’re at work, here are a couple of suggestions: YouTube. Every talk we post to TED.com is cross-posted to TED’s YouTube channel in regular and high-def. []

Culture

Crowdsourcing the news: Paul Lewis on TED.com

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When every cellphone can record video and take pictures, everyone is a potential news source. Reporter Paul Lewis tells two stories that show us the future of investigative journalism. (Recorded at TEDxThessaloniki, April 2011, in Thessaloniki, Greece. Duration: 16:56.) Watch Paul Lewis’s talk on TED.com, where you can rate it, comment on it and find []

TEDx

Starting today: More TEDx video on TED.com

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Starting today, you’ll see a new talk every single day on the homepage of TED.com! Each Saturday and Sunday, we’ll be posting a great talk from one of the thousands of independent TEDx events around the world. We launch with a powerful story from reporter Paul Lewis: Crowdsourcing the news. He uncovered evidence of a []

Entertainment

The augmented reality of techno-magic: Marco Tempest on TED.com

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Using sleight-of-hand techniques and charming storytelling, techno-illusionist Marco Tempest brings a jaunty stick figure to life onstage at TEDGlobal. (Recorded at TEDGlobal 2011, July 2011, in Edinburgh, Scotland. Duration: 5:45.) Watch Marco Tempest’s talk on TED.com, where you can download it, rate it, comment on it and find other talks and performances from our archive []

Our strange relationship to screens: Performance artist Lars Jan explores our hyper-networked world

Fellows Friday

Our strange relationship to screens: Performance artist Lars Jan explores our hyper-networked world

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Lars Jan, a TED Fellow, creates multimedia performances that probe the ubiquity of screens and propaganda in our culture. Today, his show ABACUS—billed as “a multimedia talking tour of our hyper-networked world to come”—opens at BAM’s Fisher Fishman Space in Brooklyn, New York. It’s a show delivered by his invented persona, Paul Abacus, about the future []