TEDx returns to Normal this weekend
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TEDx returns to Normal this weekend

A podcast host, the president of METI and an artificial intelligence guru will be giving the latest round of TEDx talks in Central Illinois on the campus of Illinois State University in Normal.

Tickets are now on sale for the Nov. 16 talks, with nine speakers gearing up to address a wide range of topics for this independently organized set of Ted talks. Other upcoming local TEDx events will be held in Decatur, while Champaign and Springfield hosted events over the summer, according to the TED talks website.

TED, which stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design, was conceived originally in 1984 as a conference and its early emphasis was on technology and design and has since branched out to include science, culture, political and general academic topics. TEDx events, meanwhile, are independently organized and are non-profit oriented events.

Here are some previous talks going back to 2015:

TedX Normal

  1. Normal is a Relative Term | Matthias Pope | TEDxNormal
  2. Walking with my Ancestors: A Journey from Dungeons in Ghana | Ama Oforiwaa Aduonum | TEDxNormal
  3. The Importance of Being an Unselfish Storyteller | Michael Luchies | TEDxNormal
  4. Helping the Formerly Incarcerated Be Successful | Mary Campbell | TEDxNormal
  5. The Power of Community | Dontae Latson | TEDxNormal
  6. Empowering Students to Get Stuff Done | Deborah Halperin | TEDxNormal

Among the most intriguing speakers at this year’s event are podcast host Pamela Crim, METI president Douglas Vakoch and chief artificial intelligence officer at DataFoundry Dr. Raj Ramesh.

Crim is visiting from Springfield, Missouri, where she hosts a devotional podcast. Her talk on “How the Photos You Take Can Change the Life You Live” will explore how daily intentional gratitude can change lives.

Vakoch if from San Francisco and is the president of Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence or METI for short. His talk — “Don’t Fear an Alien Invasion” — will look at why we as a species should have the courage to reach out to other civilizations.

Ramesh is from Bloomington and a renowned international speaker and consultant. He will discuss artificial intelligence and drawing for creative thinking in his talk, “How to Think, Transform, and Thrive in the Future.”

Susan Barreto

Written by Susan Barreto

Susan is an award-winning journalist who has worked for a number of regional and global publications. Much of her career has been covering the global finance industry for publications published by Crains, Reuters and Euromoney/Institutional Investor. She also interned and later freelanced for Rockford Magazine as well as the Northwestern Illinois Farmer newspaper.

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