TEDxBerkeley 2014: Looking Back at 12 Top TED Talks (videos)

Written by Gina Smith

TedxBerkeley 2014 is sold out, but click here to watch the live stream — or watch the top TED talks of all time. Magic stuff. All videos here.

aNewDomain.net — TEDxBerkeley 2014 is sold out in California. If you’re not there, click here for the live stream. Or check out some of my favorite TED talks, below. These include talks on genius, inspiration, math, the power of introverts and, from David Blaine, how it’s possible to hold your breath for 17 minutes. That’s just two minutes shorter than his TED talk, below the fold.

First off, here’s Sir Ken Robinson talking about how schools kill creativity. You know it intuitively, perhaps. Our Jerry Pournelle has had a lot of thoughts recently on the myriad problems with schools. But Robinson, below, gets at something extremely specific regarding today’s education techniques and how exactly teachers manage to quash creativity.

I love this one. It’s self-described “crazy MoFo” and bestselling motivation author Tony Robbins asking: Why Do You Do What You Do? He believes emotion is the force of life — he discusses the power of motivation, the science of achievement and the art of fulfillment, below. It’s all about appreciation, he says.

Ever wonder how great leaders inspire? What separates a great company from an ordinary one? Why do you even get out of bed in the morning and why should you even care about anything at all? Simon Senek looks into exactly such questions in this 2010 TED talk, below.

This is one of the more-intriguing TED talks I’ve watched. It’s Pranav Mistry on the potential of so-called sixth sense technology.

David Gallo astonishes in this 2007 TED talk about the wonders underwater. It’s called Underwater Astonishments. Join Gallo in his dive into the deep sea. Move over, Jean Jacques Cousteau. In this TED talk, Gallo points out just how full of surprises the world under seas really is.

Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert muses that, ever since her book made it big, people treat her as if she’s doomed. But that doesn’t stop her. In this TED talk she talks about fear, fear of broken dreams and the power of genius.

If you’re a geek, you might be an introvert. And in this TED talk, Susan Cain explores the power of introverts.

Dan Gilbert discusses the science of happiness in the 2004 TED talk below. He asks what is it about a big brain that evolution loves? And he does a deep dive on the pre-frontal cortex (PFC) in the brain and its role as an “experience simulator” in human beings. Fascinating stuff.

Speaking of brains, check out the brain magic Keith Barry does in the TED talk below. What’s brain magic? Wonder no more. Barry shows everyone in the TED audience just how easy it is to manipulate the human mind. Yikes.

Magicians are always a big draw at TED. Below, check out daredevil magician David Blaine explaining exactly how he managed to hold his breath for 17 minutes. A terrific TEDMED talk. By the way, 17 minutes is only two minutes shorter than his entire TED talk below.

Arthur Benjamin is quite a different kind of magician. He calls himself a “mathemagician.” We’ve covered his talks before here at aNewDomain.net. Check out his mathemagic TED talk, below, where he races calculators to calculate, in his head, three digit squares and more.

And finally, there’s Pamela Meyer with this now-legendary TED talk on how to spot a liar. Can you do it? Meyer, the author of LieSpotting, says people are lied to 100 or more times a day. Here’s how to become a lie spotter — and how to go from lie-spotting to truth-seeking — and trust-building.

For aNewDomain.net, I’m Gina Smith.

Gina Smith is the New York Times best-selling author of Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak’s memoir, iWoz Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer and Had Fun Doing It (W.W. Norton, 2005/2007/2012). With John C. Dvorak and Jerry Pournelle, she is the editorial director at aNewDomain.net. Email her at gina@aNewDomain.net, check out her Google + stream here or follow her @ginasmith888.