TED Tech

By TED Tech

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Description

From the construction of virtual realities to the internet of things to the watches on our wrists—technology's influence is everywhere. Its role in our lives is evolving fast, and we're faced with riveting questions and tough challenges that sit at the intersection of technology and humanity. Listen in every Friday as TED speakers explore the way tech shapes how we think about society, science, design, business, and more.


Episode Date
How to predict the future w| The TED Interview
43:12

Future forecaster and game designer Jane McGonigal ran a social simulation game in 2008 that had players dealing with the effects of a respiratory pandemic set to happen in the next decade. She wasn’t literally predicting the 2020 pandemic—but she got eerily close. Her game, set in 2019, featured scenarios we're now familiar with (like masking and social distancing), and participant reactions gave her a sense of what the world could—and eventually, did—look like. How did she do it? And what can we learn from this experiment to predict—and prepare for—the future ourselves? In this episode, Jane teaches us how to be futurists, and talks about the role of imagination—and gaming—in shaping a future that we’re truly excited about.

This is an episode of The TED Interview, another podcast in the TED Audio Collective. To hear more episodes—starting with a season all about the future of intelligence—follow The TED Interview wherever you're listening to this. We'll be back on July 22 with a new season of TED Tech—and a surprise.

Jul 01, 2022
How Caracas combats propaganda | Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala
29:33

We all know that information is power; but what if you live in a country without a free press or regular access to the internet? You have to be creative, and find nimble ways to help your community stay informed. That’s exactly what journalists in Caracas, Venezuela are doing by delivering the news every weekday…on public buses all over! Hop on a music-filled and inspiring journey as El Bus TV combats misinformation and arms you with the hope that there’s always a way to take action on the things that matter—wherever you are. This is an episode of Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala, another podcast in the TED Audio Collective. To hear more ideas from across the world, follow Far Flung wherever you're listening to this. We love making TED Tech, and we want to make it better. So if you have a few minutes, share your thoughts at surveynerds.com/ted

Jun 24, 2022
Satya Nadella is building the future | WorkLife with Adam Grant
28:23

Satya Nadella is a modern renaissance man; he’s a cricket enthusiast, poetry lover, oh, and the chairman and CEO of Microsoft with a nearly perfect approval rating on Glassdoor. Satya has led a transformation at Microsoft, up-ending the culture, and rethinking remote and hybrid work. In this episode, Adam talks to Satya about the future of work, leadership, and building cultures of care. This is an episode of WorkLife with Adam Grant, another podcast in the TED Audio Collective. For more episodes on the science of making work not suck, follow WorkLife with Adam Grant wherever you're listening to this. We love making TED Tech, and we want to make it better. So if you have a few minutes, share your thoughts at surveynerds.com/ted

Jun 17, 2022
What happens when biology becomes technology? | Christina Agapakis
11:28

"We've been promised a future of chrome -- but what if the future is fleshy?" asks biological designer Christina Agapakis. In this awe-inspiring talk, Agapakis details her work in synthetic biology -- a multidisciplinary area of research that pokes holes in the line between what's natural and artificial -- and shares how breaking down the boundaries between science, society, nature and technology can lead us to imagine different possible futures.

Jun 10, 2022
Your self-driving robotaxi is almost here | Aicha Evans
10:34

We've been hearing about self-driving cars for years, but autonomous vehicle entrepreneur Aicha Evans thinks we need to dream more daringly. In this exciting talk, she introduces us to robotaxis: fully autonomous, eco-friendly shuttles that would take you from place to place and take up less space on the streets than personal cars. Learn how this new technology works -- and what a future where we hail robotaxis would look like.

Jun 03, 2022
How to fix the "bugs" in the net-zero code | Lucas Joppa
11:09

Lucas Joppa, Microsoft's first chief environmental officer, thinks about climate change through the lens of coding, and he says the world's current net-zero approach simply won't compute. So how do we create a system that actually accounts for all the world's carbon emissions -- and helps us get to zero (as in zero additional carbon added to the atmosphere by 2050)? Joppa shares three "bugs" in our current net-zero code, a four-point plan for fixing them – and how logic can help us change the current course of climate change.

May 27, 2022
How AI can help shatter barriers to equality | Jamila Gordon
06:24

Jamila Gordon believes in the power of human connection -- and artificial intelligence -- to help people who might otherwise be left behind. Telling the story of her own path from refugee to global tech executive, she shows how AI is helping refugees, migrants and those from disadvantaged backgrounds find jobs and develop the skills they need to work effectively and safely.

May 20, 2022
The Dark Side of Decentralization | Your Undivided Attention
49:16

Today, something a little different: an episode from Your undivided Attention, another podcast in the TED Audio Collective. It's a show that explores the incredible power that technology has over our lives -- and how we can use it to catalyze a humane future. These days, there's enthusiastic talk about the possibilities of decentralized technologies, like cryptocurrencies and 3D printing. But decentralization is cast in a different light when we're talking about decentralized weaponry. Security expert Audrey Kurth Cronin guides us in an exploration of decentralized weaponry throughout history, how social media is a new decentralized weapon, and how to wisely navigate these threats. If you enjoy the episode and want to hear more, find and follow Your Undivided Attention wherever you're listening to this.

May 13, 2022
The real hotbed of innovation (hint: it's not big cities) | Xiaowei R. Wang
08:56

"To see and understand the countryside is a crucial part of moving towards a more livable future for everyone," says coder, artist and organizer Xiaowei R. Wang. They've observed that some of the most careful, thoughtful innovation is happening in the world's rural communities, like Chinese chicken farmers using biometrics tracking and blockchain to improve supply chain transparency. In this talk, they advocate for a new perspective on the countryside: not as places lacking in tech or digital media literacy but as centers of humble innovation that emphasize community and sustainability.

May 06, 2022
Self-assembling robots and the potential of artificial evolution | Emma Hart
10:59

What if robots could build and optimize themselves -- with little to no help from humans? Computer scientist Emma Hart is working on a new technology that could make "artificial evolution" possible. She explains how the three ingredients of biological evolution can be replicated digitally to build robots that can self-assemble and adapt to any environment -- from the rocky terrain of other planets to the darkest depths of the ocean -- potentially ushering in a new generation of exploration.

Apr 29, 2022
The "greenhouse-in-a-box" empowering farmers in India | Sathya Raghu Mokkapati
09:04

For smallholder farmers in India, agriculture has long been an unreliable source of income -- crops that flourish one season can fail the next, thanks to heat, pests and disease. But climate risk is now making the profession nearly impossible. TED Fellow Sathya Raghu Mokkapati is determined to change that with "greenhouse-in-a-box": a small, low-cost, easy-to-build structure aimed at helping farmers weather sizzling summers, increase monthly revenues and grow more food with less water.

Apr 22, 2022
Listen now: WorkLife season 5
03:56

WorkLife with Adam Grant is back for a fifth season! Organizational psychologist Adam Grant knows that you spend a quarter of your life at work–and in this show, he talks to some of the world’s most unusual professionals to discover how we can actually enjoy all that time. From breaking down “The Great Resignation” to identifying the work culture that’s right for you, to learning the art of the pitch, this season is packed with actionable insights to help you make work not suck. To hear episodes right now, find and follow WorkLife with Adam Grant wherever you're listening to this.

Apr 15, 2022
The promise of quantum computers | Matt Langione
12:40

What if tiny microparticles could help us solve the world's biggest problems in a matter of minutes? That's the promise -- and magic -- of quantum computers, says Matt Langione. Speaking next to an actual IBM quantum computer, he explains how these machines solve complex challenges like developing vaccines and calculating financial risk in an entirely new way that's exponentially faster than the best supercomputers -- and shares why industries should prepare now for this new leap in computing.

Apr 08, 2022
6 big ethical questions about the future of AI | Genevieve Bell
15:28

Artificial intelligence is all around us ... and the future will only bring more of it. How can we ensure the AI systems we build are responsible, safe and sustainable? Ethical AI expert Genevieve Bell shares six framing questions to broaden our understanding of future technology -- and create the next generation of critical thinkers and doers.

Apr 01, 2022
The untapped energy source that could power the planet | Jamie C. Beard
15:15

Deep beneath your feet is a molten ball of energy the same temperature as the surface of the sun -- an immense clean energy source that could power the world thousands of times over, says technologist and climate activist Jamie C. Beard. How do we tap it? She lays out a surprising solution, and an unlikely alliance, to harvest geothermal energy from the Earth's core and get it to anywhere in the world.

Mar 25, 2022
Why we're more honest with machines than people | Anne Scherer
11:48

For a genuine conversation, consider talking to a robot; the less humanized, the better. Consumer researcher Anne Scherer shares her findings on why some machines get us to open up better than actual people, revealing fascinating insights about human nature that could lead to more honest interactions in our day-to-day lives.

Mar 18, 2022
The problem of vaccine spoilage -- and a smart sensor to help | Nithya Ramanathan
06:17

Refrigerators do much more than store your groceries -- they're also vital to preserving and distributing vaccines. Illustrating the realities of (and threats to) global vaccine supply chains, technologist and TED Fellow Nithya Ramanathan describes how smart sensors placed in fridges that store medical supplies can provide crucial, real-time data and ensure people get the life-saving care they need.

Mar 11, 2022
The life-changing power of assistive technologies | Jane Velkovski
13:46

"This chair is my legs -- this chair is my life," says accessibility champion Jane Velkovski, who uses a wheelchair after being diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). With clarity and poise, he shares how his first motorized wheelchair empowered him with independence and ability -- and why assistive technology should be available to anyone who needs it. "Freedom of movement, no matter on legs or on wheels, is a human right," he says.

Mar 04, 2022
Visions for the future | Kai-Fu Lee and Chen Qiufan
29:43

How will the rise of artificial intelligence change our world? Former head of Google China Kai-Fu Lee and science-fiction writer Chen Qiufan (aka Stanley Chan) set out to answer this question in their new book "AI 2041: Ten Visions for the Future." In this wide-ranging discussion, they imagine different possibilities -- both from the imaginative lens of science fiction and with a perspective on what is actually plausible. (This conversation, hosted by TED technology curator Simone Ross, was part of a TED Membership event. Visit ted.com/membership to become a TED Member.)

Feb 25, 2022
A free and fair internet benefits everyone | Priscilla Chomba-Kinywa
09:56

Without the internet, how would you have coped with the pandemic -- from work and school, to maintaining your closest relationships? In the digital age, reliance on the internet is so common and seems ubiquitous, yet billions of people worldwide still go without it. Digital transformation strategist Priscilla Chomba-Kinywa advocates for collective access to the opportunities and potential the internet provides, underscoring the necessity of free and fair digital rights for all.

Feb 18, 2022
Super speed, magnetic levitation and the vision behind the hyperloop | Josh Giegel
09:14

What if your hour-long commute was reduced to just minutes? That's the promise of the hyperloop: a transit system designed around a pod that zooms through a vacuum-sealed space (roughly the size of a subway tunnel) at hyper-speed, powered by next-generation batteries and state-of-the-art magnetic levitation. In the visionary talk, Josh Giegel, the hyperloop's very first passenger, shares how this zipping innovation could launch us into a faster, cleaner future of transportation.

Feb 11, 2022
Why don't we cover the desert with solar panels? | Dan Kwartler
06:01

Stretching over roughly nine million square kilometers and with sands reaching temperatures of up to 80° Celsius, the Sahara Desert receives about 22 million terawatt hours of energy from the Sun every year. That's well over 100 times more energy than humanity consumes annually. So, could covering the desert with solar panels solve our energy problems? Dan Kwartler digs into the possibility. [Directed by Christoph Sarow, AIM Creative Studios, narrated by Jack Cutmore-Scott, music by André Aires].

Feb 04, 2022
Siri, Alexa, Google ... what comes next? | Karen Lellouche Tordjman
11:23

From Siri to Alexa to Google, virtual assistants already permeate our lives. What will the next generation of these digital helpers look and sound like? Customer experience professional Karen Lellouche Tordjman gives us a glimpse of where they're headed -- and breaks down the two key challenges engineers need to crack in order to usher in a new age of truly smart voice assistants.

Jan 28, 2022
The race to build AI that benefits humanity | Sam Altman
01:08:12

Will innovation in artificial intelligence drastically improve our lives, or destroy humanity as we know it? From the unintended consequences we've suffered from platforms like Facebook and YouTube to the danger of creating technology we can't control, it's easy to see why people are afraid of a world powered by AI. But in this interview, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman makes a case for AI's potential to make the future better for all of us—and explains how his company is leading that charge with an unusual new business model.

This is an episode of The TED Interview, another podcast in the TED Audio Collective. For More episodes, find and follow The TED Interview wherever you're listening to this.

Jan 21, 2022
An ever-evolving map of everything on Earth | Jack Dangermond
06:12

What if we had a map of ... everything? Jack Dangermond, a visionary behind the geographic information system (GIS) technology used to map and analyze all kinds of complex data, walks us through the interconnected technologies gathering information about every crack and corner of the Earth. Learn how this "living atlas" and "geospatial nervous system" can help us better understand our changing planet -- and let nature guide our actions towards a more sustainable future.

Jan 14, 2022
Could you recover from illness ... using your own stem cells? | Nabiha Saklayen
10:59

What if diseases could be treated with a patient's own cells, precisely and on demand? Biotech entrepreneur Nabiha Saklayen explains how we could harness advances in biology, machine learning and lasers to create personalized stem cell banks -- and develop medicine uniquely designed for each of our bodies.

Jan 07, 2022
What happens when biology becomes technology? | Christina Agapakis
11:28

"We've been promised a future of chrome -- but what if the future is fleshy?" asks biological designer Christina Agapakis. In this awe-inspiring talk, Agapakis details her work in synthetic biology -- a multidisciplinary area of research that pokes holes in the line between what's natural and artificial -- and shares how breaking down the boundaries between science, society, nature and technology can lead us to imagine different possible futures.

Dec 31, 2021
Inside the massive (and unregulated) world of surveillance tech | Sharon Weinberger
12:02

What is a weapon in the Information Age? From microscopic "smart dust" tracking devices to DNA-tracing tech and advanced facial recognition software, journalist Sharon Weinberger leads a hair-raising tour through the global, unregulated bazaar of privatized mass surveillance. To rein in this growing, multibillion-dollar marketplace that often caters to customers with nefarious intents, Weinberger believes the first step is for governments to classify surveillance tools as dangerous and powerful weapons.

Dec 24, 2021
Why we have an emotional connection to robots | Kate Darling
12:15

We're far from developing robots that feel emotions, but we already have feelings towards them, says robot ethicist Kate Darling, and an instinct like that can have consequences. Learn more about how we're biologically hardwired to project intent and life onto machines -- and how it might help us better understand ourselves.

Dec 17, 2021
How NFTs are building the internet of the future | Kayvon Tehranian
10:13

In this revelatory talk, technologist Kayvon Tehranian explores why NFTs -- digital assets that represent a certificate of ownership on the internet -- are a technological breakthrough. Learn how NFTs are putting power and economic control back into the hands of digital creators -- and pushing forward the internet's next evolution.

Dec 09, 2021