Last Updated on March 3, 2023
TED is a nonprofit organization that transmits “Ideas Worth Spreading.” It all started in 1984 as a talk conference that brought people from three industries: Technology, Entertainment, Design. TED has some of the most inspiring, innovative, and creative people speak about various subjects. Their goal is to keep moving forward and to make the world a better place.
What I love most about TED is the fact that there are so many intelligent individuals that try to change the world as we know it for the better. While we just go along with our daily routine and lives, they spend days trying to solve problems that we face as a society. Their website TED.com offers thousands of videos for anybody to watch and enjoy. The ideas that the speakers share are really inspiring and make you want to take action.
We decided to share with you some of the most interesting videos in the design field. If you can, I strongly suggest to watch every one of these. For most of them you don’t really have to watch, you can just listen. We hope you will find these ideas inspiring and helpful!
1. Tim Berners-Lee on the next Web
20 years ago, Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. For his next project, he’s building a web for open, linked data that could do for numbers what the Web did for words, pictures, video: unlock our data and reframe the way we use it together. He is currently leading the World Wide Web Consortium, and oversees the Web’s standards and development.
2. Rives controls the Internet
How many poets could cram eBay, Friendster and Monster.com into 3-minute poem worthy of a standing ovation? Enjoy Rives’ unique talent.
3. Sergey Brin and Larry Page on Google
Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin offer a peek inside the Google machine, sharing tidbits about international search patterns, the philanthropic Google Foundation, and the company’s dedication to innovation and employee happiness.
4. Mena Trott on blogs
The founding mother of the blog revolution, Movable Type’s Mena Trott, talks about the early days of blogging, when she realized that giving regular people the power to share our lives online is the key to building a friendlier, more connected world.
5. Alexis Ohanian: How to make a splash in social media
In a funny, rapid-fire 4 minutes, Alexis Ohanian of Reddit tells the real-life fable of one humpback whale’s rise to Web stardom. The lesson of Mister Splashy Pants is a shoo-in classic for meme-makers and marketers in the Facebook age.
6. Stefan Sagmeister shares happy design
Graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister takes the audience on a whimsical journey through moments of his life that made him happy — and notes how many of these moments have to do with good design.
7. Marian Bantjes: Intricate beauty by design
In graphic design, Marian Bantjes says, throwing your individuality into a project is heresy. She explains how she built her career doing just that, bringing her signature delicate illustrations to storefronts, valentines and even genetic diagrams.
8. Richard St. John: “Success is a continuous journey”
In his typically candid style, Richard St. John reminds us that success is not a one-way street, but a constant journey. He uses the story of his business’ rise and fall to illustrate a valuable lesson — when we stop trying, we fail.
9. Don Norman on 3 ways good design makes you happy
In this talk from 2003, design critic Don Norman turns his incisive eye toward beauty, fun, pleasure and emotion, as he looks at design that makes people happy. He names the three emotional cues that a well-designed product must hit to succeed.
10. Milton Glaser on using design to make ideas new
From the TED archives: The legendary graphic designer Milton Glaser dives deep into a new painting inspired by Piero della Francesca. From here, he muses on what makes a convincing poster, by breaking down an idea and making it new.
11. Jonathan Harris: the Web’s secret stories
Jonathan Harris wants to make sense of the infinite world on the Web — so he builds dazzling graphic interfaces that help us visualize the data floating around out there. Here he presents “We Feel Fine,” a project that scours blogs to collect the planet’s emoti(c)ons, and the “Yahoo! Time Capsule,” which preserves images, quotes and thoughts snapped up in 2006. And he premieres “Universe,” which presents current events as constellations of words — a tag cloud of our collective consciousness.
12. Stefan Sagmeister: The power of time off
Every seven years, designer Stefan Sagmeister closes his New York studio for a yearlong sabbatical to rejuvenate and refresh their creative outlook. He explains the often overlooked value of time off and shows the innovative projects inspired by his time in Bali.
13. Rory Sutherland: Life lessons from an ad man
Advertising adds value to a product by changing our perception, rather than the product itself. Rory Sutherland makes the daring assertion that a change in perceived value can be just as satisfying as what we consider “real” value — and his conclusion has interesting consequences for how we look at life.
14. Carl Honore praises slowness
Journalist Carl Honore believes the Western world’s emphasis on speed erodes health, productivity and quality of life. But there’s a backlash brewing, as everyday people start putting the brakes on their all-too-modern lives.
15. Chris Anderson of WIRED on tech’s Long Tail
Chris Anderson, the editor of WIRED, explores the four key stages of any viable technology: setting the right price, gaining market share, displacing an established technology and, finally, becoming ubiquitous.
16. Kevin Kelly on the next 5,000 days of the web
Kevin Kelly has been publisher of the Whole Earth Review, exec editor at WIRED, founder of visionary nonprofits, and writer on biology and business and “cool tools. At the 2007 EG conference, Kevin Kelly shares a fun stat: The World Wide Web, as we know it, is only 5,000 days old. Now, Kelly asks, how can we predict what’s coming in the next 5,000 days?
17. Jonathan Zittrain: The Web as random acts of kindness
Jonathan Zittrain wants to make sure the electronic frontier stays open — and he’s looking to the Internet’s millions of users for its salvation. Feeling like the world is becoming less friendly? Social theorist Jonathan Zittrain begs to difffer. The Internet, he suggests, is made up of millions of disinterested acts of kindness, curiosity and trust.
18. Evan Williams on listening to Twitter users
In the year leading up to this talk, the web tool Twitter exploded in size (up 10x during 2008 alone). Co-founder Evan Williams reveals that many of the ideas driving that growth came from unexpected uses invented by the users themselves.
19. Chris Anderson: How web video powers global innovation
TED’s Chris Anderson says the rise of web video is driving a worldwide phenomenon he calls Crowd Accelerated Innovation — a self-fueling cycle of learning that could be as significant as the invention of print. But to tap into its power, organizations will need to embrace radical openness.
20. Jacek Utko designs to save newspapers
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. Jacek Utko is an extraordinary Polish newspaper designer whose redesigns for papers in Eastern Europe not only win awards, but increase circulation by up to 100%. Can good design save the newspaper? It just might.