What’s really in the air we breathe – Vicki Grassian at TEDxSanDiego 2017

Vicki begins by asking the question, “what do you think is in the air that we breathe?” Aerosols are rarely talked about, yet they are having a significant effect on the quality of the air we breathe.

These particles are typically a thousand times smaller than the width of a hair, and they come from a variety of sources, such as car exhaust and factories, as well as volcanoes and wildfires. The ocean also contributes to the story, with viruses, bacteria, phytoplankton and enzymes present in sea air.

In addition, dust particles from Asia find their way to the shores of the United States. Airborne particles such as these can negatively affect the upper respiratory tract, and recent research indicates that they can affect our brain.

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Is the universe a product of thermodynamic evolution? – Todd Hylton at TEDxSanDiego 2017

Todd Hylton suggests that the de facto assumption in most of the current scientific enterprise is that the organization of the universe is driven by a poorly understood or complex chain of causality that explains how everything works, and that the role of the scientist is to “get to the bottom of it”.

He begins his talk by questioning that no one can say with certainty how the universe came to be, but what if the answer was a non-mechanistic, anti-supernatural, evolutionary world view of how things came to exist? What if the big bang was simply an expression of pure potential leading to the creation, evolution, and existence of everything in the universe?

Could our existence be a product of thermodynamic evolution, he asks, and if so, can we someday build thermodynamic computers that evolve in the world on their own?

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Diversity and inclusion empowers community centered design – Bennett Peji at TEDxSanDiego 2017

Bennett successfully makes the case that everyone should play a role in the success of their city, as well as their local neighborhood, which means that development of those communities requires residents to be at the table when important decisions are being made.

This approach to community centered design requires all voices welcome and encouraged. With this progressive philosophy, new and diverse solutions can be discovered, and local residents can be empowered to take control of their future.

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