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Program Speakers A-Z

A
Jose Antonio Abreu Jose Antonio Abreu
Maestro
Jose Antonio Abreu founded El Sistema ("the system") in 1975 to help poor Venezuelan kids learn to play a musical instrument and be part of an orchestra. 30 years on, El Sistema has seeded 102 youth orchestras -- and many happy lives. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Shai Agassi Shai Agassi
Green auto pioneer
Shai Agassi wants to put you behind the wheel of an electric car -- but he doesn't want you to sacrifice convenience (or cash) to do it. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Pete Alcorn Pete Alcorn
Media exec
Pete Alcorn is the head of podcasting for Apple, and a veteran of the paper-publishing industry. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Ray Anderson Ray Anderson
Sustainable-business pioneer
Ray Anderson founded the company that makes covetable Flor carpeting. But behind the fresh design is a decades-deep commitment to sustainable ways of doing business -- culminating in the Mission Zero plan. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Dan Ariely Dan Ariely
Behavioral economist
It's become increasingly obvious that the dismal science of economics is not as firmly grounded in actual behavior as was once supposed. In "Predictably Irrational," Dan Ariely tells us why. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Yann Arthus-Bertrand Yann Arthus-Bertrand
Photographer
With photography, Yann Arthus-Bertrand has captured the beauty of the Earth. Through video and film, his latest projects bind together ecology and humanism. For him, it's all about living together. 3: Reconnect
Wed Feb 4, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
B
Bonnie Bassler Bonnie Bassler
Molecular biologist
Bonnie Bassler studies how bacteria can communicate with one another, through chemical signals, to act as a unit. Her work could pave the way for new, more potent medicine. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Yves Behar Yves Behar
Designer
Yves Behar has produced some of the new millennium's most coveted objects, like the Leaf lamp, the Jawbone headset, and the XO laptop for One Laptop per Child. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Arthur Benjamin Arthur Benjamin
Mathemagician
Using daring displays of algorithmic trickery, lightning calculator and number wizard Arthur Benjamin mesmerizes audiences with mathematical mystery and beauty. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Tim Berners-Lee Tim Berners-Lee
Inventor
Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. He leads the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), overseeing the Web's standards and development. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Bruce Bueno de Mesquita Bruce Bueno de Mesquita
Political scientist
A consultant to the CIA and the Department of Defense, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita has built an intricate computer model that can predict the outcomes of international conflicts with bewildering accuracy. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
C
Capacitor Capacitor
Dance troupe
Pulling imagery from hard science (their latest work, Biome, studies the development of plant life), Capacitor uses the human body to explore the forces of nature. 10: Dare
Fri Feb 6, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Liz Coleman Liz Coleman
College president
Liz Coleman radically remade Bennington College in the mid-1990s, in pursuit of a new vision: higher education as a performing art. 12: Engage
Sat Feb 7, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Jamie Cullum Jamie Cullum
Jazz-pop singer
Wrestling with inspiration, Jamie Cullum has been ripping up the jazz rulebook. 12: Engage
Sat Feb 7, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
D
Dickson Despommier Dickson Despommier
High-rise farmer
Your community garden is about to get off the ground -- as Dickson Despommier works to lift urban agriculture into the skies. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
E
Sylvia Earle Sylvia Earle
Oceanographer
Sylvia Earle has been at the frontier of deep ocean exploration for four decades. She's led more than 50 undersea expeditions, and she's been an equally tireless advocate for our oceans and the creatures who live in them. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Jake Eberts Jake Eberts
Producer
Film producer Jake Eberts has worked with some of the world's greatest directors on many award-winning films. Now, he's turned his attention to Jacques Perrin's film about the oceans. 3: Reconnect
Wed Feb 4, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Olafur Eliasson Olafur Eliasson
Sculptor of light and space
The transparent simplicity and experiential nature of his work has built Olafur Eliasson's reputation as one of the world's most accessible creators of contemporary art. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Juan Enriquez Juan Enriquez
Futurist
Juan Enriquez thinks and writes about profound changes that genomics will bring in business, technology, and society. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
F
Louise Fresco Louise Fresco
Food and agriculture expert
A powerful thinker and globe-trotting advisor on sustainability, Louise Fresco says it's time to think of food as a topic of social and economic importance on par with oil -- that responsible agriculture and food consumption are crucial to world stability. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Robert Full Robert Full
Biologist
Robert Full studies cockroach legs and gecko feet. His research is helping build tomorrow's robots, based on evolution's ancient engineering. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
G
Cindy Gallop Cindy Gallop
Advertising maven
Cindy Gallop has turned her illustrious advertising career into a lifelong pursuit of changing the world, her way -- one daring project after another. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Bill Gates Bill Gates
Philanthropist
A passionate techie and a shrewd businessman, Bill Gates changed the world while leading Microsoft to dizzying success. Now he's doing it again with his own style of philanthropy and passion for innovation. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Ueli Gegenschatz Ueli Gegenschatz
Aerialist
Ueli Gegenschatz took flight just about every way a human can: paragliding, skydiving, BASE jumping (from the Eiffel Tower), and most breathtakingly: by donning a wingsuit and soaring. 10: Dare
Fri Feb 6, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Elizabeth Gilbert Elizabeth Gilbert
Writer
The author of 'Eat, Pray, Love,' Elizabeth Gilbert has thought long and hard about some big topics. Her fascinations: genius, creativity and how we get in our own way when it comes to both. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Renny Gleeson Renny Gleeson
Media strategist
Renny Gleeson helps navigate brands through fresh concepts, such as viral marketing and social media, to find the pulse of the modern consumer. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Seth Godin Seth Godin
Marketer and author
Seth Godin is an entrepreneur and blogger who thinks about the marketing of ideas in the digital age. His newest interest: the tribes we lead. 3: Reconnect
Wed Feb 4, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Thelma Golden Thelma Golden
Curator
Opening minds and showcasing new voices -- it's all part of the job description for Studio Museum in Harlem executive director Thelma Golden. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Al Gore Al Gore
Climate-change prophet
Once the US Vice President, then star of An Inconvenient Truth, now Nobel Peace Prize winner, Al Gore found a way to focus the world's attention on climate change. In doing so, he has invented a new medium -- the Keynote movie -- and reinvented himself. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Saul Griffith Saul Griffith
Inventor
Inventor Saul Griffith looks for elegant ways to make real things, from low-cost eyeglasses to a kite that tows boats. His latest projects include open-source inventions and elegant new ways to generate power. 3: Reconnect
Wed Feb 4, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
H
Herbie Hancock Herbie Hancock
Jazz legend
Herbie Hancock is an iconic jazz musician, known as much for his mastery of the traditional as he is for entirely changing the game. 10: Dare
Fri Feb 6, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
David Hanson David Hanson
Robotics designer
David Hanson merges robotics and art to design life-like, social robots that can mimic human expression and emotion. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
J
Nina Jablonski Nina Jablonski
Anthropologist
Nina Jablonski is author of Skin: A Natural History, a close look at human skin’s many remarkable traits: its colors, its sweatiness, the fact that we decorate it. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Sarah Jones Sarah Jones
Polymorphic playwright
Tony Award-winning monologist, UNICEF ambassador, firebrand and FCC-fighting poet -- Sarah Jones assumes as many roles offstage as on. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
K
Lena Maria Klingvall Lena Maria Klingvall
Painter, singer, athlete
Lena Maria Klingvall was born with no arms and only one full leg. Her story -- she's a gold-medal swimmer, a singing star, a painter, a writer -- is one of limitless determination and brilliant adaptation. 10: Dare
Fri Feb 6, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Daniel Kraft Daniel Kraft
Physician scientist
Daniel Kraft is a physician-scientist, inventor and innovator. He chairs the FutureMed program at Singularity University, exploring the impact and potential of rapidly developing technologies as applied to health and medicine. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
JoAnn Kuchera-Morin JoAnn Kuchera-Morin
Composer
Composer JoAnn Kuchera-Morin is the director of the Center for Research in Electronic Art Technology (CREATE) at UC Santa Barbara. 3-Minute Talks
Wed Feb 4, 2009
4:00 – 1:00
JoAnn Kuchera-Morin JoAnn Kuchera-Morin
Composer
Composer JoAnn Kuchera-Morin is the director of the Center for Research in Electronic Art Technology (CREATE) at UC Santa Barbara. 3-Minute Talks
Wed Feb 4, 2009
4:00 – 1:00
L
John La Grou John La Grou
Inventor
John La Grou, a long-time electronics inventor, audio designer and entrepreneur, wants to save lives (and energy) with a new, smarter type of electrical outlet. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Golan Levin Golan Levin
Experimental audio-visual artist
Half performance artist, half software engineer, Golan Levin manipulates the computer to create improvised soundscapes with dazzling corresponding visuals. He is at the forefront of defining new parameters for art. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Don Levy Don Levy
Film executive
Don Levy has served on the frontlines of the digital transformation of entertainment. For 17 years, he led the communications efforts for top visual effects and digital animation studio, Sony Pictures Imageworks. He is fascinated by the magic of movies. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Eric Lewis Eric Lewis
Pianist
Eric Lewis channels the raw emotion of alternative rock into fiery, take-no-prisoners jazz piano arrangements. Before setting out to capture the voice of alt rock in the keys, he toured with the likes of music legends Wynton Marsalis and Elvin Jones. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Eric Lewis Eric Lewis
Pianist
Eric Lewis channels the raw emotion of alternative rock into fiery, take-no-prisoners jazz piano arrangements. Before setting out to capture the voice of alt rock in the keys, he toured with the likes of music legends Wynton Marsalis and Elvin Jones. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Daniel Libeskind Daniel Libeskind
Architect
Being a designer of breathtaking and sometimes confounding buildings seems almost a footnote to the amazing life of architect Daniel Libeskind. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
M
Pattie Maes Pattie Maes
Researcher
As head of the MIT Media Lab's Fluid Interfaces Group, Pattie Maes researches the tools we use to work with information and connect with one another. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Jennifer Mather Jennifer Mather
Psychologist
Jennifer Mather studies the surprising minds of cephalopod molluscs like cuttlefish and octopuses -- making a fresh case for animal intelligence and, perhaps, unique emotions. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
David Merrill David Merrill
MIT grad student
David Merrill works on Siftables, tiny computer blocks that interact with each other to make networks (and music). 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Pranav Mistry Pranav Mistry
Director of research, Samsung Research America
As an MIT grad student, Pranav Mistry invented SixthSense, a wearable device that enables new interactions between the real world and the world of data. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Catherine Mohr Catherine Mohr
Roboticist
Catherine Mohr works on surgical robots and robotic surgical procedures, using robots to make surgery safer -- and to go places where human wrists and eyes simply can't. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Kary Mullis Kary Mullis
Biochemist
Kary Mullis won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for developing a way to copy a strand of DNA. (His technique, called PCR, jump-started the 1990s' biorevolution.) He's known for his wide-ranging interests -- and strong opinions. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
N
Nalini Nadkarni Nalini Nadkarni
Tree researcher
Called "the queen of canopy research," Nalini Nadkarni explores the rich, vital world found in the tops of trees. She communicates what she finds to non-scientists -- with the help of poets, preachers and prisoners. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Naturally 7 Naturally 7
A capella ensemble
The group Naturally 7 practices vocal play -- the art of using the human voice to mimic instruments. It's as if a beatboxing troupe decided they could "-box" a whole orchestra: flute, horns, drums, guitar -- building a vocal wall of sound. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Nicholas Negroponte Nicholas Negroponte
Tech visionary
The founder of the MIT Media Lab, Nicholas Negroponte pushed the edge of the information revolution as an inventor, thinker and angel investor. He's the driving force behind One Laptop per Child, building computers for children in the developing world. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Nandan Nilekani Nandan Nilekani
Technologist and visionary
Nandan Nilekani is the author of "Imagining India," a radical re-thinking of one of the world’s great economies. The co-founder of Infosys, he helped move India into the age of IT. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
R
Tom Rielly Tom Rielly
Satirist
Traditionally, Tom Rielly closes the TED Conference with a merciless 18-minute monologue, skewering all the speakers with his deadpan delivery, spot-on satire and boundary-less performance (complete with PowerPoint, pratfalls and partial nudity). 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Tom Rielly Tom Rielly
Satirist
Traditionally, Tom Rielly closes the TED Conference with a merciless 18-minute monologue, skewering all the speakers with his deadpan delivery, spot-on satire and boundary-less performance (complete with PowerPoint, pratfalls and partial nudity). 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Rives Rives
Performance poet, multimedia artist
Performance artist and storyteller Rives has been called "the first 2.0 poet," using images, video and technology to bring his words to life. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Rives Rives
Performance poet, multimedia artist
Performance artist and storyteller Rives has been called "the first 2.0 poet," using images, video and technology to bring his words to life. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Mary Roach Mary Roach
Writer
Death, the afterlife, and now sex -- Mary Roach tackles the most pondered and least understood conundrums that have baffled humans for centuries. (She's funny, too.) 10: Dare
Fri Feb 6, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Hans Rosling Hans Rosling
Global health expert; data visionary
In Hans Rosling’s hands, data sings. Global trends in health and economics come to vivid life. And the big picture of global development—with some surprisingly good news—snaps into sharp focus. 3-Minute Talks
Wed Feb 4, 2009
4:00 – 1:00
Hans Rosling Hans Rosling
Global health expert; data visionary
In Hans Rosling’s hands, data sings. Global trends in health and economics come to vivid life. And the big picture of global development—with some surprisingly good news—snaps into sharp focus. 3-Minute Talks
Wed Feb 4, 2009
4:00 – 1:00
S
Oliver Sacks Oliver Sacks
Neurological anthropologist
Since Awakenings first stormed the bestseller lists (and the silver screen), Oliver Sacks has become an unlikely household name, single-handedly inventing the genre of neurological anthropology. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Barry Schwartz Barry Schwartz
Psychologist
Barry Schwartz studies the link between economics and psychology, offering startling insights into modern life. Lately, working with Ken Sharpe, he's studying wisdom. 12: Engage
Sat Feb 7, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Nate Silver Nate Silver
Statistician
Math whiz and baseball fan Nate Silver was mainly known for predicting outcomes in fantasy ballgames -- until his technique hit a home run calling the outcome of the 2008 election primaries. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
P.W. Singer P.W. Singer
Military analyst
In P.W. Singer's most recent book, "Wired for War," he studies robotic and drone warfighters -- and explores how these new war machines are changing the very nature of human conflict. He has also written on other facets of modern war, including private armies and child soldiers. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Willie Smits Willie Smits
Conservationist
Willie Smits has devoted his life to saving the forest habitat of orangutans, the "thinkers of the jungle." As towns, farms and wars encroach on native forests, Smits works to save what is left. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Jill Sobule Jill Sobule
Singer/songwriter
Jill Sobule isn't just another singer-songwriter with catchy tunes and smart lyrics, she's one of the more insightful satirists of our age. Each of her fanciful songs captures an issue or irony, an emotion or epiphany that helps us understand what it's like to live now. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Regina Spektor Regina Spektor
Singer-songwriter
Russian-born songstress Regina Spektor has climbed charts around the world with skillfully subtle songs and head-turning glottal stops. 3: Reconnect
Wed Feb 4, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Kevin Surace Kevin Surace
Engineer, executive
Kevin Surace is looking at the climate crisis from an engineer's perspective -- and creating products that prove there's no piece of our daily lives we can't redesign to be cleaner and greener. 6: Invent
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
T
Alex Tabarrok Alex Tabarrok
Economist
With the hit economic blog MarginalRevolution.com, co-author Alex Tabarrok generates more hits than a summer hailstorm, and sheds light into the darkest corners of the dismal science. 11: Predict
Sat Feb 7, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Jill Tarter Jill Tarter
Astronomer
SETI's Jill Tarter has devoted her career to hunting for signs of sentient beings elsewhere, and almost all aspects of this field have been affected by her work. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
Gustavo Dudamel and the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra Gustavo Dudamel and the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra
Ensemble
The Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra is the national high-school-age youth orchestra of El Sistema, made up of the best young musicians from throughout Venezuela. Gustavo Dudamel, himself a product of El Sistema, is the new musical director of the LA Philharmonic. 7: Dream (TED Prize)
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
5:00 – 6:45
AnnMarie Thomas AnnMarie Thomas
Educator
AnnMarie Thomas works on the playful side of engineering -- using cool tools to teach and help others. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Natasha Tsakos Natasha Tsakos
Artist
The president and founder of NTiD inc., Natasha Tsakos brings a creative, innovative vision, and the art of orchestrating and synchronizing various disciplines, to the execution of high-leveled productions. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Gever Tulley Gever Tulley
Tinkerer
The founder of the Tinkering School, Gever Tulley likes to build things with kids. 12: Engage
Sat Feb 7, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
U
Ed Ulbrich Ed Ulbrich
Visual storyteller
Ed Ulbrich works at the leading edge of computer-generated visuals. On a recent project, filmmakers, artists, and technologists have been working at a breakthrough point where reality and digitally created worlds collide. 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Jacek Utko Jacek Utko
Newspaper designer
Could good design save the newspaper -- at least for now? Jacek Utko thinks so -- and his lively, engaging designs for European papers prove that it works. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
W
Jay Walker Jay Walker
Entrepreneur
Jay Walker is fascinated by intellectual property in all its forms. His firm, Walker Digital, created Priceline and many other businesses that reframe old problems with new IT. In his private life, he's a bibliophile and collector on an epic scale. 12: Engage
Sat Feb 7, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Margaret Wertheim Margaret Wertheim
Figurer
By masterminding a project to model a coral reef armed only with crochet hooks, Margaret Wertheim hopes to bring some of the most complicated mathematical models embodied in our universe into the minds (and hands) of the masses. 5: Understand
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Evan Williams Evan Williams
Twitter co-founder
Evan Williams is the co-founder of Twitter, the addictive messaging service that connects the world 140 characters at a time. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
Nathan Wolfe Nathan Wolfe
Virus hunter
Armed with blood samples, high-tech tools and a small army of fieldworkers, Nathan Wolfe hopes to re-invent pandemic control -- and reveal hidden secrets of the planet's dominant lifeform: the virus. 8: Discover
Fri Feb 6, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Z
Ray Zahab Ray Zahab
Endurance runner
In January 2009, Ray Zahab broke the record for fastest unsupported trek across Antarctica, to raise awareness and money for kids' environmental education. In 2006, he ran across the Sahara to raise awareness of water shortages. (He started running 5 years ago.) 4: See
Thurs Feb 5, 2009
8:30 – 10:15
Benjamin Zander Benjamin Zander
Conductor
A leading interpreter of Mahler and Beethoven, Benjamin Zander is known for his charisma and unyielding energy -- and for his brilliant pre-concert talks. 1: Reboot
Wed Feb 4, 2009
11:00 – 12:45
Rosamund Zander Rosamund Zander
Therapist and coach
Rosamund Zander helps people think and act in more creative ways, and to grow to see new possibilities in themselves and others. 9: Grow
Fri Feb 6, 2009
2:15 – 4:00
a
Gamelan X and ArcheDream Gamelan X and ArcheDream
Ensemble
Gamelan X plays slinky melodies in unusual timbres, layered over sweet thumping grooves. Add the spectacular costumes and UV light dance-theater of ArcheDream and prepare to be blown away. 2: Reframe
Wed Feb 4, 2009
2:15 – 4:00