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4 More Inspiring Talks & A Moving Performance From Our 2013 Conference


  • 4 More Inspiring Talks & A Moving Performance From Our 2013 Conference

    • October 16, 2013
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    We are thrilled to share four more powerful talks and a memorable performance from our 5th annual TEDxToronto conference.


    Michael Stone

    In Buddhist teachings, a focus is often placed on transcendence and enlightenment. In his TEDxTalk, Michael Stone speaks about his struggle with this focus, discussing his concern with how this takes attention away from the material world. He expresses how he wants to be OF the material world, engaged in and embracing of both urban life and natural environments, arguing, “we need to be more materialistic.” He postulates that the road to reconciling transcendence with the material world is not through the old model of “vertical transcendence,” but rather through “horizontal transcendence,” or transcendence through relationships with one another and the material world.


    Dr. Mendez

    Specializing in functional neurosurgery, brain repair, stem cells and robotics, Dr. Mendez’s technical demonstration addresses the use of remote-presence robots for medical care in neurosurgery. He confronts the idea that quality medical care should not be the sole purvey of those who live in big cities; many people live in areas of the world that are remote, if not inaccessible, at certain times of year. These people face the reality that medical care may not be available when they need it. And in this technical demonstration in which Dr. Mendez takes us to Labrador, Saskatchewan and California, he shows how long distance telementoring neurosurgery is changing this harsh reality — and could continue to better the lives of rural inhabitants all over the world in the near future.


    Ti-Anna Wang

    As the first talk of our day, Ti-Anna Wang set the stage for a thoughtful TEDx defined by personal stories abstracted into greater theses imbued with meaning.  Speaking about the Chinese arrest and imprisonment of her father, Wang Bingzhang, this reluctant activitst challenges us all to do what is right instead of what is easy, and asks us to rethink our respective persectives on politics, human rights, and civic engagement.


    Brendan Frey

    One of the last and greatest mysteries of our world lies buried within the walls of our own cells. Along with his team of researchers at the University of Toronto, Dr. Brendan Frey seeks to reveal how the genetic codes within our DNA determine the fates, sometimes good and sometimes bad, of the cells in our bodies. Watch as Dr. Frey takes us on a journey into this uncharted territory, explaining how he and his research group are beginning to decipher these genetic “recipes” and how they are responsible for diversity between cells, individuals and species. Moreover, listen as he describes how the potential decoding of this information may lead to treatments for genetic diseases, piquing our curiosity about how far science should go.


    Matt Good

    Closing the show, Canadian rock icon Matt Good took the stage for a combined TEDxTalk and memorable performance. Watch as Matt speaks about the subject of mental health through a personal lens. His Talk recognizes the idea that our society wants to foster creativity, but at the same time, artistic genius can sometimes be accompanied by illnesses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Unless we recognize that gifted performers may be facing struggles, we may fail to recognize these talents altogether. Finally, listen as Matt closes the show with a haunting and echoing performance of “Strange Days,” in which his voice and guitar alone captivate and stir the audience.


    Stay tuned – additional TEDxToronto 2013 talks will be posted up on our site soon.

    -The TEDxToronto Organizing Committee

  • More Talks Released from Our 2013 Conference

    • October 8, 2013
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    We are thrilled to announce the release of more incredible TEDxTalks from our September 26, 2013 Conference.

    Rodolphe el-Khoury: More than ever before, the line between the digital and real worlds is increasingly blurred. Historically, computers and devices have functioned as a separate layer within our lives. Watch as architect Rodolphe el-Khoury describes a not-too-distant future in which “the internet of things” will become a reality. In this world, our homes, workplaces, and the objects within them will all be digitally connected, intelligent, and responsive.


    Debbie Berlin-Romalis: As a clinical social worker at SickKids Hospital and a facilitator at Sheena’s Place, Debbie’s work is fraught with emotional challenges. In this talk, Debbie talks about the importance of honesty. She draws upon examples that show how honesty can be transformative for families faced with difficult realities. As well, she uncovers her own truth to the audience, demonstrating how critical self-honesty is to leading an authentic life.


    Joel MacCharles: We live in a time and culture in which dialogue about food is more complex than ever before; food is at once accessible, disposable, commoditized, and fetishized. Watch as Joel MacCharles dispels myths about canning and preserving, helping us to understand how the traditional techniques of our forebears can be easier than we think as well as a time and money saver. At the same time, he exposes some unpleasant truths about the ingredients lists on the backs of food products at the supermarket. Steel yourself: you’re about to find out what “cochineal” and “castoreum” mean.


    Red Sky: Opening the show, Canada’s leading company of world Indigenous performance in dance, theatre and music graced the Koerner Hall stage. Watch as two dancers create an emotional and spiritual narrative through motion. The athleticism, grace, and beauty of this polished performance, “Horse Dreaming Excerpt,” set the tone for the day and opened our minds to inspiration and possibility.


    Thalmic Labs: As technology increasingly becomes an extension of us, Thalmic Labs has developed the gesture-based MYO band, a form of wearable computing that harnesses “electromyography sensors.” These sensors detect the electrical activity generated by muscle contraction, combining it with an axis-motion sensor that tracks the movement and orientation of a person’s arm. Watch the awe-inspiring, ground-breaking demonstration of this technology, wherein one of the company founders controls a helicopter onstage with only his arm.



    Stay tuned as more TEDxToronto Talk videos will become available in the coming weeks.


    The TEDxToronto Organizing Committee

  • On the night of Sept 26th, where will your choices take you?

    • September 24, 2013
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    AP Design_3_Night Club (1)

    Toronto, our TEDxToronto theme this is year is “The Choices We Make.” The collective choice we all make as a city is to live here – we choose to live, work, and play in Toronto.

    In true TEDxToronto fashion, Toronto’s most innovative event planners are putting together installations for this year’s After Party that will push the boundaries of live experiences in technology, entertainment, and design.

    When you arrive at the TEDxToronto After Party, you will immediately face a choice: enter the party through the red path or enter through the white path? Which will you choose? And depending on your choice, how will the night unfold?

    You’ll explore UNIUN and discover massive installations of art and technology that await you inside, including a life size “Ask the 8 Ball,” a forest of paper fortune tellers, and a ceiling installation that lives and breathes, just to name a few.

    Even the music will be chosen by you throughout the night on tablets, with our official DJs, DJ Deuce and DJ Romeo, performing a live mashup of the songs at the peak of the party.

    Be prepared for great drinks, inspiring installations, and a night to remember in our favourite city.

    Get your tickets here: http://tedxtoronto.eventbrite.ca/

    When: Thursday September 26th, 9:30PM

    Where: UNIUN, 473 Adelaide Street West

    If you’re attending TEDxToronto: please remember your ticket is NOT the same as an After Party ticket. If you haven’t already bought an After Party ticket, don’t miss your chance for you and your friends to attend!

    Please note this is a 19+ event. Valid government issued photo I.D. and a copy of your ticket will be required at the door for entry. Please drink responsibly and please do not drink and drive.


    The TEDxToronto Organizing Committee


  • TEDxToronto After Party – Just a Few Tickets Left

    • September 24, 2013
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    With just over one week to go, tickets for the Official TEDxToronto After Party are now open to the public and are running out quickly. These tickets sell out every year; don’t  miss out on your chance to attend!

    When and Where: Thursday September 26th, 9:30PM

    When: UNIUN, 473 Adelaide Street West

    PURCHASE: http://tedxtoronto.eventbrite.ca

     Event Description: The TEDxToronto After Party experience continues the theme of our conference “The Choices We Make” and starts with a choice that will determine how your night unfolds.

     Attendees will explore the power of their decisions as the night progresses in a series of dynamic experiences of celebration. Hand picked DJs will unleash their talent on the room. Video, technical, and audio experiences will come together in a night of massive spectacle and inspiration.

    Join TEDxToronto delegates, speakers, sponsors and Torontonians for the most stimulating night of the year. Buy your tickets today to secure a spot in one of the most sought after Toronto parties of 2013.

    If you’re attending TEDxToronto: please remember your ticket is NOT the same as an After Party ticket. If you haven’t already bought an After Party ticket, don’t miss your chance for you and your friends to attend!

     Please note this is a 19+ event . Valid government issued photo I.D. and a copy of your ticket will be required at the door for entry. Please drink responsibly and please do not drink and drive.


    The TEDxToronto Organizing Committee



  • TEDxToronto Announces Conference Performers and Demos

    • September 5, 2013
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    As part of their programming, many TEDx events often intersperse TEDxTalks with stage performances and technical demonstrations, or “demos.” For our 2013 conference, we believe TEDxToronto has selected performers and demos that not only complement the stellar lineup of speakers we have secured, but that will hope will be just as inspiring for our delegates and viewers, provoking discussion and action.

    They consist of “The Godfather of Canadian Hip Hop,” an award-winning indigenous dance performance company, a rock icon, mechatronic engineers, and the man who performed the first long distance telementoring neurosurgery in the world.

    Regarding the three performers booked in for the event, Afshin Mousavian, chair and co-organizer of TEDxToronto, says that “performances like the ones you’ll see at TEDxToronto 2013 are another way to generate an emotional reaction, stimulating conversation and potentially acting as a catalyst for change.”
    Afshin went on to say: “the kinds of technical demos we’ll see on stage offer a bit of a sneak peek at technologies of the future that are being realized today. We’re proud that some of the world’s best and brightest are from Canada, and we’re thrilled that these change makers have chosen to join us for TEDxToronto 2013.” The performers and demos are:

    Performer: Maestro Fresh Wes  
    Wes-Williams---High-Res-Image (1)
    Actor, Author, Rapper

    Performer: Red Sky
    Red Sky/ TONO
    Red Sky Performance

    Performer: Matthew Good 
    Matthew Good

    Demo: Thalmic Labs
    Thalmic Labs - Founders
    Thalmic Labs will be represented by Stephen Lake, Matthew Bailey, and Aaron Grant

    Demo: Dr. Ivar M. Mendez
    Fred H. Wigmore Professor and Chairman, Department of Surgery – University of Saskatchewan

    As well, the TEDxToronto Official After Party Ticket Sales are NOW OPEN. It will, as always, be one Toronto’s key social events of the season, extending a day of conversation into an evening of inspiration. Where delegates, speakers and the public will mingle with the city’s most dynamic individuals, create new connections, and experience the awe inspiring night TEDxToronto has in store.

    Please note we encourage you to buy your ticket as soon as possible as they do sell out quickly.

    Finally, stay tuned to TEDxToronto.com and also to social channels over the next few weeks for more information on live streaming and our Satellite event.

    The TEDxToronto Organizing Committee