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TED

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

The TED conference is an annual gathering for presentations known as TED talks on a broad range of topics related to science and culture. 

Richard Saul Wurman was inspired to create TED because of the convergence he perceived between the fields of technology, entertainment and design, which is the source of the acronym TED. He and Harry Mark organized the original TED conference in 1984.

At the first TED,  demonstrations included the compact disc (CD), the Apple Macintosh, the e-reader and 3D graphics. Presenters included mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot,  Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the One Laptop Per Child project, and Stewart Brand, editor of the Whole Earth Catalogue. 

The first conference was not a financial success and it was not until 1990 that TED became an annual event. The main TED conference is now held in Victoria, British Columbia; there are also satellite TED events in cities around the world. The TED slogan is "Ideas worth spreading." Although conference fees for attendees are steep, TED talk videos are made freely available from the organization's website under a Creative Commons license. 

Curator Chris Anderson's TED talk, How web video powers global innovation:

This was last updated in May 2014

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