July 25, 2016 at 12:05 pm

The Founder of TED Lists His 5 Favorite TED Talks

by twistedsifter


A user on Quora recently asked:

What are the top 5 TED talks that you took away the most learnings from?


And none other than the founder of TED himself, Chris Anderson, replied with his top 5 TED talks along with a brief explanation why he found each talk so enlightening.

Below you will find all 5 talks embedded. They’re around 20 minutes each so you may want to bookmark this page for future viewing 🙂 Enjoy!

[via Chris Anderson on Quora]



1. David Deutsch: Chemical scum that dream of distant quasars



“Here’s a maverick physicist giving an eloquent argument about the power of knowledge… framed in an incredible talk, full of unexpected twists and turns. Deutsch helped convince me that knowledge is far more than just a weird evolutionary trick invented by one of earth’s species.”


2. Clay Shirky: Institutions vs. collaboration



“Back in 2005 Shirky spoke about how the web was enabling new models that should encourage institutions to ‘let go’ and allow others to do some of their work for them. I think it helped convince us that we should be willing to risk giving away our best talks for free online.”


3. Nancy Etcoff: Happiness and its surprises



“This is one of a whole collection of talks on happiness that have really changed my thinking and, um, I think actually made me happier. The science of happiness is counter-intuitive. Etcoff offers a great summary. This playlist has many more.”


4. Bryan Stevenson: We need to talk about an injustice



“Bryan spoke about a tough subject – America’s broken justice system – in a way that was unbelievably compelling. He won the longest standing ovation in TED’s history. And I haven’t been able to get him and his cause out of my mind ever since.”


5. Steven Pinker and Rebecca Newberger Goldstein: The long reach of reason



“Unusual talk this one. It was given as a Socratic dialog. They reach the conclusion that pure reason has shaped history profoundly, though it sometimes takes hundreds of years. If the world bought into this view, we’d do a much better job of listening to each other. This version of the talk is delivered in animated form, via the brilliance of Cognitive’s Andrew Park.”