TEDxUbud 2014

For me, holiday is not only about relaxing the body, but also to refresh the mind and soul. This time, the journey led me to Ubud, Bali, Indonesia to attend one of TEDx event.

Have you heard about TED? TED is a non profit organisation devoted to ideas worth spreading. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics – from science to business to global issues – in more than 100 languages.

What is TEDx? It is a TED event held by independent organisers, with support from TED. It is designed to help communities, organisations and individuals to spark conversation and connection through local TED-like experiences.

 [credit to TED website]

What makes me so into this? simply because there are so many great ideas shared in this platform. The idea was shared by using less than 18-minutes video, where leading thinkers and doers speak or present their ideas. If you enjoy YouTube and enjoy great ideas, you will certainly enjoy TED. And, its free, GRATIS. No need to pay subscription.

Who are the speakers? from teacher to researcher, from musician to directors. Do you want names? Okay, i’ll name a few, Sheryl Sanberg – COO of Facebook; Susan Cain – author of Quiet; Simon Sinek – Leadership Expert; Elon Musk – CEO of Tesla Motors. They are thinkers, doers and idea generators.

As per i write this article, TED has collection of 1800+ videos (and growing) from more than 1500+ speakers. Last years, over one billion people viewed TED videos.

I know, enough about the facts and numbers about TED. What am i doing in Ubud? I need to admit that i am huge fan of TED. Therefore, in the beginning of the year, i did some researches where i can attend TED event nearby. Voila! There are 2 options, TEDxJakarta or TEDxUbud. Based on the website, the viable one was TEDxUbud on Sept 6th. The website of TED, TEDxJakarta, and TEDxUbud are available in the end of the article.

TEDxUbud is an independent TED event organised in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. It started on May 6th, 2011. The venue for 2014 event was in Five Elements – a stunning retreat place. The attendee slot for this event is only for 300 people. The entree ticket varied from 650K rupiahs to 1000K rupiahs, depending on the timing and type. This didn’t stop the popularity of this event.

To be able to purchase the ticket, you need to send an application through the website. Then, the organiser will contact you if you get through. The application is increasing from year to year. In 2013, total application was more than 800+ and in 2014 it was 1052. Remember, only 300 seats are available.

Whats the application about? As far as i know, its about you. You need to fill in some set of questions that describe your profile. This is for the organiser to be able to create such a diverse crowd to support the intended interaction in the event.

TEDxUbud 2014 lasted all day, from 10.00 to 17.00. In total, there were 18 talks, with 2 pre-recorded TED Talks and 3 performances. It was designed in 4 sessions with 2 of 30-min coffee breaks and 1-hour lunch break. It was closed by closing reception in Five Element pool, featuring Isami & Friends. All talks were conducted in English.

Here are the 18 talks with the link to the videos,

[Performance 1] Kadek Esen | Jauk Topeng Manis

[Talk 2] Dr. Annabel Gallop | Why we need to digitise our history

[Performance 3] Chika Asamoto

[Talk 4] Elizabeth Pisani | The other side of corruption in Indonesia

[Talk 5] Will Goldfarb | Make it nice, dessert that is

[Talk 6] Nancy Margried | Batik design by algorithm?

[Talk 7] Elora Hardy | Houses made of grass

[Q&A Talk 8] Michael Bodekaer

[Performance 9] Emoni Bali

[Recorded Talk 10] TED: Tom Thum | The orchestra in my mouth

[Talk 11] Duncan McKee | An instant orchestra with 300 strangers

[Talk 12] John Taylor | Revealing the invisible in our cities

[Talk 13] Jennifer Croes | The pinnacle of evolution?

[Talk 14] Sayan Gulino | Running out of water, running out of time

[Recorded Talk 15] TED: Amanda Palmer | The art of asking

[Q&A Talk 16] Ainun Najib | Crowdsourcing the Indonesia Election

[Talk 17] Cindy Gallop | We all do it, we just don’t talk about it

[Performance 18] Rizal Abdulhadi

All of the talks were interesting and great. But, i can not feature all the talks in this article – it can be a novel long. I only feature the 3 top talks that i like the most.

[Q&A Talk 16] Ainun Najib

Have you heard about kawalpemilu.org ? This were a platform in last presidential election to monitor the process of official vote count in Indonesia. The ultimate purpose is to avoid the undesired situation for the people of Indonesia due to the political situation, especially during the open vote count period. Thats why i like this talk.

This idea was pioneered by Ainun and his friends from all over the world – all of them are Indonesian. What make this idea a success? the people behind it. The source of data were coming from only the trustee network – trusted friends of friends. Because of the success, this big initiative received international media highlights.

This is the example how simple IT can give meaningful purpose to the community. This what i believe in when i decided to move to IT global function in the company i currently work. :’)

[Talk 4] Elizabeth Pisani – TED Global 2014

Elizabeth is journalist that had live in Indonesia for quite long time. Her Bahasa Indonesia was really good. In fact, she was preparing the presentation in Indonesia, before changed it to English. She talked about KKN – Corruption, Collusion, and Nepotism, a topic that most of all avoid to talk. She brought a different perspective of KKN in Indonesia which related to Indonesian culture. She mentioned Indonesia’s big family and strong relationship in community in a smart and funny way. KKN might not as simple as you thought after you saw this talk. She also one of the presenter in TED Global 2014, held in Brazil – Rio de Janeiro.

[Performance 18] Rizal Abdulhadi

Rizal is a musician from West Java. He built his own instrument from bamboo – only one in the world – that combine several functions, named “Rasendriya”. He said his English was bad, so he explained his music more with playing his instrument. I really enjoyed the music he brought to the audience. I can feel his passion and sincerity.

Quoting from James P Hackett, President and CEO of Steelcase Inc., “TED conference has endorsed two key notions. One: the pursuit of knowledge is of lifelong importance. Two: The power of networks only gets stronger if you include others.” I have wrote about the first notion, now its the time for the second notion.

During the event, there were 3 breaks, 2 of 30-minutes coffee break and 1 of 1-hour lunch break. This when you can mingle with the crowd. You don’t need to worry if you are going alone to this event. The crowd was amazing – thanks for the curator of the event. It was very easy to start conversation with someone. They had curious minds which mean they interested in the conversation in same level as yours. The speakers also amongst them – don’t be shy to talk to them. If you also want to build network in this event, don’t forget to bring your business cards.

Thats the end of my “field trip” report. I personally enjoy this event and wish to attend more TED events in the future. For disclaimer purpose, i write this article because i genuinely like TED and i hope you also can benefit from it. The content of this article is purely my perspective, not represent TED or TEDx or TEDxUbud officials view or even promotion. :’)

A bit more about TED..

How about if i don’t like the idea presented by the speakers in TED? For me, its not about right or wrong, its about learning other perspective that also make sense. If you notice in the web, there is * mark at the end of  the tagline. The full phrase is “Idea worth spreading* or challenging”, which mean that TED somehow challenge you to challenge back – with action, not just talking nonsense.

Interested to join in ? visit TED.com

Interested to attend TEDx Jakarta? visit TEDxJakarta.org

Interested to attend TEDxUbud? the next one will be on Sept 5, 2015. Visit TEDxUbud.com for more details

Interested to stay in Five elements during the event? visit fivelements.org

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