Creating purposeful wonder

Inspired by the view through his first telescope of a fuzzy, but awe-inducing glimpse of Saturn, entrepreneur Jim Haven was spellbound by wonder.

He is now creating ways to discover and share that sense of wonder with others. Haven’s message to all of us is look up and wonder. A lifelong daydreamer and former advertising creative, Jim learned from some of the most creative people in the business before forming a creative agency in Seattle and London. It was this relationship with creativity that inspired him to change careers and a chance encounter with Saturn that has sparked his present endeavor. Jim has turned his focus skyward, co-founding Look Up where he serves as Wondernaut and Executive Director. Look Up explores the power of wonder through art, science, and space. The organization is creating collaborative experiences designed to incite wonder.


Virtual reality can be a powerful tool for understanding each other

Virtual Reality is a work in progress, says Sandy Cioffi, and she outlines exciting ways VR is being used to experience "the other," to virtually "walk in someone else’s shoes."

Artists as using immersive media, to create new narratives that would allow you to put on a high-tech headset and feel what it’s like to float down the Amazon river, experience life as a different gender, or scatter in the wake of destruction on a Syrian street. With examples of some of the most exciting work going on in this new media, Sandy argues that VR can provide a seismically new way to understand ourselves and, in the end, give us a greater understanding of what it is to be human. Sandy Cioffi was the Director of SIFFX, the Seattle film festival's celebration of virtual reality and immersive filmmaking and is currently director of the New Media and Virtual Reality X Fair coming in 2018. As a filmmaker, Sandy has worked with human rights organizations in global hot zones and has worked extensively with Hate Free Zone (now One America) producing films about treatment of immigrants post-September 11th. In 2005-2008, Sandy traveled to the volatile Niger Delta in Nigeria to film "Sweet Crude," documenting conditions and interviewing the region’s key stakeholders, including leadership of the armed resistance movement. She has been active in political advocacy for the Delta’s people, appealing to media, U.S. legislators, international diplomats, and NGOs. Sandy has worked as an artist-in-residence at many middle and high schools in Washington State and through the mentor/apprentice film program at the Langston Hughes Cultural Arts Center. She was the founder and Director/Chair of Film + Media at Cornish College of the Arts. Currently, Sandy is directing a non-fiction media project with CREA, a feminist human rights organization. She is the co-founder and Creative Director of the start-up fearless360º creating immersive media and education events around the world. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.


Disease eradication is within reach

Steve Davis is working to bring an extraordinary vision to reality—the global elimination of some of the world’s most deadly and debilitating diseases.

Davis is the president and CEO of PATH, a 40-year-old, Seattle-based, global health-focused, non-governmental organization which works on vaccines, drugs, diagnostics, devices, and system/service innovations. In this talk, Davis lays out the “how to” of disease elimination calling on his diverse experience as a former human-rights lawyer, a nationally-recognized technology business innovator and social activist. Steve Davis, president and CEO of PATH, combines extensive experience as a technology business leader, global health advocate, and social innovator to accelerate great ideas and bring lifesaving solutions to scale. Prior to joining PATH in 2012, he served as director of Social Innovation at McKinsey & Company, CEO of the global digital media firm, Corbis, interim director of the Infectious Disease Research Institute, and he practiced law at the international law firm K&L Gates. Earlier, he worked extensively on refugee programs and policies, and Chinese politics and law. Mr. Davis is a lecturer on social innovation at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He currently is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, serves on the board of InterAction, and sits on several advisory groups, including the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Social Innovation and the Clinton Global Initiative’s Global Health Advisory Board. He also serves as a trustee of the World Economic Forum’s Global Health Challenge. Mr. Davis earned his BA from Princeton University, his MA in Chinese studies from the University of Washington, and his law degree from Columbia University. He also studied at Beijing University.


We're drowning in BS, but you can learn how to fight back

Jevin West is not afraid to call out bullshit for what it is and wants to teach us how to do the same.

West is an assistant professor and co-creator of a new course, “Calling BS: data reasoning in a digital world” at the University of Washington. In this engaging talk, West shows how dangerous and misleading some news stories can be and warns that while BS is fairly easy to create, it’s harder to clean up, especially when shared relentlessly on social media. Jevin D. West is an Assistant Professor in the Information School at the University of Washington. He co-founded the DataLab, a collection of faculty and graduate students focused on research in Data Curation, Computational Social Science, Data for Social Good, Information Visualization and the Science of Science. He is one of the chief architects of the new Data Science curricula for undergraduate and graduate programs at UW. Together with Carl Bergstrom, he developed the Calling Bullshit course to help the public refute the onslaught of misinformation in today’s digital and data-driven environments. The course is being adopted at universities and high schools around the world. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.


Nature's internet: how trees talk to each other in a healthy forest

This fascinating talk presents the scientific research that shows the interconnectedness of life in the forest ecosystem.

It takes us beneath the forest floor where we learn how trees are communicating and exchanging resources. Going beyond the simple view of a forest as a resource to be exploited, it presents the forest as a complex network of life. Her examination of the relationships that make up the complexity of nature present compelling support for the idea that “We are all one”


Artificial Intelligence will empower us, not exterminate us

Artificial Intelligence advocate Oren Etzioni makes a case for the life-saving benefits of AI used wisely to improve our way of life. Acknowledging growing fears about AI’s potential for abuse of power, he asks us to consider how to responsibly balance our desire for greater intelligence and autonomy with the risks inherent in this new and growing technology.


Let’s make connectivity mobile — by heading to space

Access to the internet has changed the world, but with expectations in the next 15 year of 30 billion connected devices, we are facing a connectivity crisis. The ONLY option for meeting the increased demand for bandwidth is to go to space and we have the technology to get us there.


Asteroids are closer than you think

Learn about the surprising number and range of near earth asteroids and how they are forming a platform for solar system exploration. Chris Lewicki has worked with NASA and is a leader in pioneering technologies that are addressing the challenges of space habitation and managing extraterrestrial resources.