The Age of Magic – Natasha Tsakos at TEDxSanDiego 2015

If all of history stood on a one-year scale, humans have existed for the amount of time it takes you to blink. This realization emphasizes not only how much humans have accomplished during our relatively short history, but also how incredible the current time we live in is. Natasha Tsakos, a conceptual director, interactive designer, and idea generator calls our period in history the “Age of Magic.”

Natasha points out some of the seemingly impossible breakthroughs that 2015 has seen. She then fuses music, lighting, and vivid descriptions to bring the audience’s minds to see her vision of technological discoveries over the next 25 years.

Natasha activates and inspires our imagination through her theatrical performance style. She explains that her lifelong fascination with theatrical performance shaped her brain to break down the normal, systematic way of looking at the world, and to truly believe that anything is possible.

Her talk, which integrates technology with live performance, embodies her concept that we possess the technology to create anything we can dream of—we just need the creativity and innovation to imagine it.

Natasha notes that for the past century, humans have acted as the machines and robots of the Industrial and Information ages. To keep up with the technological shift our world is making, humanity must shift to a creative state.

She also explains how different forms of art inspire the innovation necessary to create new inventions. It takes people who think differently to create a different world, asserting creativity is not a gift, but an attitude that we practice. In conclusion, Natasha offers her six steps to make a habit of creativity, so that we may invent, grow, and make a future that no one can predict.

Natasha Tsakos Website

Natasha Tsakos on Twitter

Natasha Tsakos on Facebook

Natasha Tsakos on YouTube

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Living With Intent – Mallika Chopra at TEDxSanDiego 2015

For the individual who often wonders, “What am I meant to be doing in life? What is my purpose? How can I feel happier?,” Mallika Chopra’s talk offers insightful guidance. Mallika is a renowned speaker and author who encourages intent, wellness, balance, and purpose. As the daughter of Deepak Chopra, one of the most influential voices of holistic health in the world, Mallika still relates to the question that we all face – how to lead a fulfilling life.

She acknowledges the stress that our modern lifestyles can lead to as we quickly run from task to task, yet finish the day lacking a sure sense of accomplishment. As a mother, media entrepreneur, and published author, Mallika knows the familiar struggle of desiring to do something important with our lives in the midst of busy and frenzied days.

Mallika provides us with a glimpse into what it’s like growing up as the daughter of a figure who so heavily emphasizes the power of thought on our life outcomes, and shares the three questions that her father urged her to ask herself, along with practicing meditation, in order to find what health, happiness, and purpose meant for her.

These questions help us learn how to live a life of purpose and intent. Mallika explains the difference between deeper intent and task-oriented goals and shares the special conversation she had with Eckhart Tolle, author of The Power of Now, that helped her understand what it means to live with purpose and to be present in the moment. That advice has helped her to feel peaceful, clear, and purposeful in her daily actions.

Mallika Chopra hopes that by sharing how to live with intent, she will help others live happier, healthier, more connected, and more purposeful lives. She aims for a humanity of people who believe that they are enough, and can serve the universe in their own unique way.

Mallika Chopra Website

Mallika Chopra on Twitter

Mallika Chopra on Facebook

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Invisible Cities of the Creative Mind – Xiao Xiao at TEDxSanDiego 2014

The mind is a mysterious place, and a place where psychologists have only begun to scratch the surface. There are several theories about how the mind works, not molecular but metaphorically. So how do we understand and perceive the world around us? How are our thoughts and understanding shaped each day?

Xiao Xiao, a TEDxSanDiego speaker this past year, offers a simple theory of her own; a method to help understand how we process information. Her explanation of the complex systems of our thoughts, memories, and behaviors come from a simple concept: the mind is like a network of invisible cities, which are linked together through roads (connections with others) and structures (ideas and thoughts). The explanation is so simple, it’s breathtaking.

Xiao draws you in by delivering charismatic and funny speeches across the nation about her theories of how the structure of the mind shares many similarities with the structure of the computer codes she has dedicated her life to learning and creating.

By combining her passion for music and technology, Xiao has begun to use her background in computer science to create new possibilities for musicians in the future. One project discussed was the possibility to explore the feeling of playing a duet with yourself-20 years in the past.

Xiao is a Chinese-American pianist, programmer, and designer, currently a PhD student in the Tangible Media Group of the MIT Media Lab. Her work in computer science is bridging the gap between psychology and engineering, tying in elements of her love of music and expression.

Psychologists and neuroscientists alike have been attempting to discover the answer to the fundamental question of why we do what we do since the 19th century. But maybe the question should begin to shift from why we do what we do, to how we do what we do.

Xiao begins to answer this question by explaining how she builds cities within her mind. Little factories account for the small, logical processes that occur almost instantaneously, like counting. These small factories begin to build upon each other in a series of connected networks, which serves as a parallel to problem solving with the usage of the basic codes which allow the brain to count, speak, debunk, and more.

As we attempt to use Xiao’s method to construct cities in our own minds to help us understand, remember, and connect, we are left with the question of how we can help each other build those roads and factories she so beautifully drew for the talk.

Xiao Xiao Website

Xiao Xiao on Twitter

Xiao Xiao on Facebook

Xiao Xiao on Vimeo

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