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.
The Dark Side of Decentralization | Your Undivided Attention
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.
The real hotbed of innovation (hint: it's not big cities) | Xiaowei R. Wang
"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.
Self-assembling robots and the potential of artificial evolution | Emma Hart
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.
The "greenhouse-in-a-box" empowering farmers in India | Sathya Raghu Mokkapati
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.
Listen now: WorkLife season 5
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.
The promise of quantum computers | Matt Langione
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.