TED News in Brief: Bill Nye joins the cast of “Dancing with the Stars,” Isaac Mizrahi moves on from fashion

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Bill Nye the Science Guy (watch his TED-Ed lesson) will be joining the cast of “Dancing with the Stars.” New York Magazine says of Nye’s inclusion in the lineup — alongside Snooki, Valerie Harper and Jack Osbourne — that he is “the big get.” How long do we think it will be before he and his partner dance to “She Blinded Me With Science?”

The Guardian has picked the “20 online talks that could change your life.” Spoiler alert: more than half of their picks are TED Talks.

Isaac Mizrahi (watch his talk, and check out his playlist of TED favorites) has relinquished control of his fashion company, leaving him be free to do a cabaret act, cook, paint, and more, as sources tell The New York Times.

Legendary writer Margaret Atwood has imagined a post-apocalyptic future that sounds like, and references, George Monbiot’s book Feral. (Read about Monbiot’s talk at TEDGlobal 2013.)

PostSecret, the website where people anonymously post the things they would never tell their closest friends (watch Frank Warren’s talk about it), has run into some controversy. As reported by Vice, it appears that someone may have posted a murder confession on the site.

Janet Echelman (watch her talk) is a guest DJ on KCRW, Southern California’s NPR station, and has picked five songs from five key moments in her life.

This article on expectations in music from Australia’s The Age references Bobby McFerrin’s TED Talk (watch it here).

In OMNI Reboot, George Lazenby muses on sight and stories — drawing from Pawan Sinha’s work on restoring sight in blind children (watch his TED Talk), and sharing a mind-blowing, 325-year-old thought experiment. He asks: How much of what we see is informed by the stories we hear?

In the incredible video above, National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins (watch his talk) sings the “Sequester Blues.” He not only plays guitar, but has written lyrics about the woes of the US government cutting budgets for medical research.

Oliver Sacks (watch his TED Talk) is coming to a small screen near you. Deadline reports that NBC is developing a TV drama called Sparks, based on the fascinating case studies of the neurological anthropologist.

The Node has rounded up its favorite biology-related TED Talks.

In this Al Jazeera report, Hans Rosling (watch any of his 9 talks) breaks down what mothers need across the world and across income gaps to have safe births. Start listening at 1:05.

GPS spoofer Todd Humphreys (watch his talk) is at it again! The MIT Technology Review reports that he and his students just knocked a multi-million-dollar yacht off course.

Jeff Smith (watch his TED Talk) discusses the experience of being well-off, white and in prison with Piper Kerman of Orange is the New Black fame. One great moment from this MSNBC segment: “What do you want to tell people who are living in the America where they don’t think the criminal justice system has anything to do with them?” the interviewer asks. Smith replies, “The people who are locked up really aren’t that different from you and I. We probably had a lot more privileges than a lot of them growing up — maybe an intact family, the opportunity for a great education, or financial security, but at the end of the day, they miss their kids just like we do, they miss their girlfriend or their wife or their mom or their friends just like we do, and they want a chance at a better life when they get out.”

The online magazine Bookslut asked poet Stephen Burt (read about his TEDGlobal 2013 talk) to list some of the delightful things he’s recently consumed. On his list: “TED Talks by Bernie Krause (watch it), Gavin Pretor-Pinney (watch it) and Alexa Meade.” (We’ll bring you Burt’s talk later this fall.) And dive into another great long interview with Burt, quite different, from the Huffington Post.

Tim Brown’s TED Talk (watch it here) was referenced in the essay, “It’s time to bring design thinking down from on high.”

At TED2012, Sherry Turkle gave a talk on how our devices and online lives are making us more connected, and at the same time more alone. Below, her ideas as animated by Shimi Cohen as a project for a course at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Tel Aviv.