TED@Cannes speakers Gary Wolf (far left), Hans Rosling, Nicholas Christakis and Stefan Sagmeister. Photo: TED / Robert Leslie
On Monday at the Cannes Lions advertising festival, TED curated a brisk and fascinating look at the future of media and community — TED@Cannes.
The speaker lineup mixed TEDTalks stars and new voices: Hans Rosling, Nicholas Christakis, Stefana Broadbent, Clay Shirky, and Stefan Sagmeister join Wired contributing editor Gary Wolf, Foursquare cofounder Naveen Selvadurai, and musician Bora Yoon. In the audience were 100 Cannes Lions attendees, many new to TED, who joined us on a deep dive into the new world of interconnected media. The event was co-presented by Microsoft and Starcom MediaVest Group, and held in the Microsoft Advertising Experience Center on the lawn of Le Grand Hotel, just across from the beach. Here’s what happened onstage:
Hans Rosling debuted a new talk that combines his amazing stat software, Gapminder, with a groundbreaking analog tool for data display: stacking boxes from Ikea. He used them to show how the word has become divided into four economic categories: those who walk, those who bike, those who drive and those who fly.
Nicholas Christakis talked about his newest research on human networks — asking, how can we use our social networks to make the world a better place?
Musician Bora Yoon created an elegant looping soundscape from spoons, static and her own beautiful voice.
Anthropologist Stefana Broadbent talked about the growing connection between work and home, enabled by digital tools that let us text and talk to our families anytime.
Designer Stefan Sagmeister talked about his quest for happiness — and how our unconscious makes us do things we don’t quite understand.
Foursquare co-founder Naveen Selvadurai talked about using social data to improve our lives (as in the “gym rat” badge onscreen, which Foursquare users get for going to the gym 10 times).
Wired contributing editor Gary Wolf talked about the rise of personal biometrics and the Quantified Self — the idea that we can gain self-awareness by collecting data about ourselves.
Sociologist Clay Shirky talked about “cognitive surplus,” the subject of his new book. It’s the idea that our spare brain cycles can be used to build something that makes the world a better place, like Wikipedia or Ushahidi. Or something silly like LOLcats.
Meanwhile, backstage, Mel Carson and his team from Microsoft Advertising shot this great video, interviewing speakers and a few other surprises: