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TEDxWellington 2019 Review | A Chance Which Paid Off

My eighth TEDx event as licensee.

Am still reeling from the TEDache which comes from running a TEDx event, although, still smiling.

Everything we tried this year worked, even though we had no cash sponsor and had to cut the livestream option plus be very creative with the budget, all whilst going from a 1,000 speaker venue to 200 (as currently St James Theatre is undergoing earthquake restrengthening).

There’s a full write-up of the whole event on tedxwellington.com but here are the choice cuts relating to the experience (we’re still waiting on the final videos of the talks to be edited):

  • treasure hunts: with the first clue being handed out by our MC’s, this interaction provided an opportunity to gamify building connections between delegates. There were five clues that enabled the team participating to journey through the space, experiencing ‘chance’ encounters with TEDxWellington team members and the installations around the venue;
  • photobooth: creating digital takeaways to share through social channels;
  • head / neck / shoulders massage: because sometimes you need help in getting those ideas into your brain plus to shake off the emotions a little from the challenging talks of the previous session;
  • speaker stations: allocated spots for delegates to both find and connect with the speakers to dive deeper into their shared idea;
  • toilet interactions (yes that’s right): on the back of the cubicle doors we had a matrix of the speakers with an opportunity to mark how the talk made them feel.
  • silent disco: again utilising the colours related to the wristbands so that participants were grooving to tunes by ‘chance’.

Check out all the event photos on our Flickr stream.

The lessons learned from previous years were hard learned but oh so precious:

  • keep the leadership team small
  • outline (via ‘job descriptions’) the specific expectations for each role plus interview for these key positions
  • highlight this is not volunteering but actioneering (professionalism and quality is key).

Again, none of the above would’ve been possible without a dedicated group of humans (volunteers, leadership team, speakers alike plus our partners), devouting their free time / products for nothing (or a reduced rate) but feeding on the hope generator that is TEDx:

Related post: TEDxWellington 2019 Details Announced | Chance Is A Fine Thing

Creative Multiplications | One And One and One Equals Five

Lessons from the production of my favourite three films.

The above is a magnificent insight into the creative process of the Before Trilogy and the bold, collaborative approach taken by director, Richard Linklater.

Ethan starts the interview regaling the genesis of the first movie, along with the way Linklater devolved responsibility of the character plus script development to the actors during six weeks in Venice (a shared creative model which would be replicated in the next two films). The openness and willingness to trust is so uniquely evident in this action from Linklater, although you can still hear the influence of his guiding support, providing them with the courage and reasoning to continue with the project as doubts appear.

Even though Linklater obviously provides the themes and framework, it’s through the joint effort of his associates does the project flourish into beauty. It reminds me of playing in a band (I used to a be a drummer and even in the interview Ethan mentions this as a metaphor – how everyone knows their role against the backdrop of the melody) – the constraints catalyse experimentations and how roles change with the space / atmosphere created (again, just like in a band if someone starts riffing in a different key or to a different beat).

There’s so much to take from the above, from caring about the craft of the shared journey, cherishing artistry, knowing something is important and right as it feel like it’s extracting a toll, how the intimacy created in building something together echoes through to the final product, and how true leadership is collaborative.

As a solopreneur in most of my own endeavours am definitely hungry for these types of partnerships and will take this inspiration to seek them out more.

Related post: In The Attempt

People Are Awesome | The Hope Generator That Is TEDx

The innate goodness of humans.

Last night was the first of five TEDxWellington speaker coaching sessions with these people:

Being surrounded by impressive souls (full bios) was a much needed reminder of the innate brilliance of humans doing superb things (from an initiative to track human rights violations to how to build homes so that the materials can be reused, a programme to teach mindfulness to children to new technology to help diagnose breast health, from ethically built sensors to monitor the health of your home to an ongoing project which cleans our underwater environment, from teaching communities to cook on a budget to an evolving body positive programme for females, from championing the use of menstrual cups for system change to rethinking our criminal justice system).

To feel that warmness of hope and genuine awe seems rare these days in the global gloom which blasts through the news and our other media channels.

Devoting time to remind oneself that the world is not what the media tells you is a must for our mental health. So thank you TEDx for continuing to offer opportunities which lightens the soul.

Deadline for ticket registration ends soon.

ADDENDUM 21.8.19 Here’s a short video from the day of me talking about the above, full reflections here:

#7 July 2019 | Monthly Digital Breadcrumbs

Follow the links for connect to stories and wondrous things.

READ

How the brain makes no distinction between a broken bone and an aching heart (sighs).

The news that Amazon got sued over Alexa child recordings in US (shudder).

WATCH

The launch video from (along with the 2019 speakers / ticket registration announcement):

The anti-CEO playbook by @hamdiulukaya:

A jazz pianist improvising in tandem with a piano that plays itself:

EXPLORE

Search NASAs library of 140,000 high definition photos, videos, and sound clips.

There are 91,000 historic maps in this collection to play around with and remix.

Attend the Weta Workshop Workshops (if you’re in Wellington): from sculpting to leather & chain-mailing to movie make-up.

All monthly digital breadcrumbs posts.
Image credit: Y Ddraig Aur (The Gold Dragon), c. 1400 – c. 1416, the royal standard of Owain Glyndŵr, Prince of Wales

#6 June 2019 | Monthly Digital Breadcrumbs

Click for cerebral adventures.

READ

Unpacking my experience of C2 Montréal 2019.

“I co-founded Facebook. It’s time to break it up.

The number that can change the world (it’s 3.5%).

Amazon’s Alexa is spying on us / you.

Protect solar system from mining ‘gold rush’, say scientists.

WATCH

When it’s time for a little (chair) dancing:

Superhero supercut:

How to save our planet:

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This satellite tracking website.

New search engine indexes 300+ million public domain images.

Check out this fun team page.

How to hack your iPhone’s “Do Not Disturb While Driving” function to significantly improve your life.

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Image credit: Bloomberg Businessweek (US), “The apology machine”

Facebook Cofounder Chris Hughes On Why Facebook Is Broke | Applies To Instagram / WhatsApp Users Also

Watch and learn why Facebook needs to be broken up.

Mark’s influence is staggering, far beyond that of anyone else in the private sector or in government. He controls three core communications platforms — Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp — that billions of people use every day. Facebook’s board works more like an advisory committee than an overseer, because Mark controls around 60 percent of voting shares. Mark alone can decide how to configure Facebook’s algorithms to determine what people see in their News Feeds, what privacy settings they can use and even which messages get delivered. He sets the rules for how to distinguish violent and incendiary speech from the merely offensive, and he can choose to shut down a competitor by acquiring, blocking or copying it.

Quote from NY Times article
Related posts: Suction Media | The Death Of “Social” / Chamath Palihapitiya | We Are Being Programmed / Goodbye Facebook | A Failed Social Media Utility That Is Succeeding In Other Ways

#5 May 2019 | Monthly Digital Breadcrumbs

Get those digits dancing and brain buzzing.

READ

Ruined By Design sample chapter which deconstructs how Silicon Valley destroyed the social fabric of humanity to make a profit.

Unethical UK businesses using AI to monitor staff activity.

Major report finds New Zealand’s environment is in serious trouble.

WATCH

“…grooving with the present…”:

Thank you @MrJacobBanks:

Another great offering from @Tom_LSOO:

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Endlessly unique ambient music maker by @alex_bainter.

How to create an RSS feed for a YouTube channel.

A free AI tool to remove image backgrounds.

Commercial free stock videos.

Live radio from all over the globe.

Automatically colorize black and white photos.

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Image credit: via GIPHY

#4 Apr 2019 | Monthly Digital Breadcrumbs

Time to use your digit and wander the information superhighway.

READ

A year on after the Cambridge Analytica scandal what has been learned, done, not done.

A new study from Harvard just proved that open plan offices are one of the dumbest ideas of all time.

Apparently the hippies have been right about vibrations and consciousness all this time.

WATCH

This stupendous video essay on what it is to be human within the philosophy of Blade Runner 2049, by Tom van der Linden:

A 90minutes chat between Russell Brand and Douglas Rushkoff:

Men read other men’s deepest secrets by Jubilee Media:

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The 35 questions from the Proust Questionnaire which Vanity Fair uses in their interviews.

Nearly 12 hours of Lo Fi Hip Hop for those who need to chill out / study / work.

An emulator for the very first web browser from 1989.

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Image credit: Angry Dog

#3 Mar 2019 | Monthly Digital Breadcrumbs

Allow your brain to wander with your clicks.

READ

Facebook moderators tell of a sad story of strict scrutiny and PTSD symptoms.

Check out these 30 startup pitch decks with some learnings from each.

Looking for feedback? Try these three questions.

WATCH

Ten Star Wars movies edited down into one super trailer by @TopherGrace & @JeffYorkes:

Listen to @stephenfry & @SamHarrisOrg chat -> two wonderful gents with minds the size of the planet & pools of empathetic insights:

Just some delightful minimal animals:

EXPLORE

A simple platform to create gifs from YouTube vids & other sources.

Here’s an easy-to-use online PDF tool for 18 things.

Over a 1000 free pixel-perfect vector icons for your next project.

A wonderful free service that lets you listen to any YouTube or Vimeo channels, playlists or videos in podcast format.

All monthly digital breadcrumbs posts.
Image credit: via GapingVoid, subscribe here