TED Science

TED: Riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world. The annual TED conferences, in Long Beach/Palm Springs and Edinburgh, bring together the world's most fascinating thinkers and doers, who are challenged to give the talk of their lives (in 18 minutes or less). This section contains talks generally related to science.
English United States Science
141 Episodes
1 – 20

A young inventor's plan to recycle Styrofoam: Ashton Cofer

From packing peanuts to disposable coffee cups, each year the US alone produces some two billion pounds of Styrofoam — none of which can be recycled. Frustrated by this waste of resources and landfill space, Ashton Cofer and his science fair teammates developed a heating treatment to break down used…
29 Mar 2017 6 min

A temporary tattoo that brings hospital care to the home : Todd Coleman

What if doctors could monitor patients at home with the same degree of accuracy they'd get during a stay at the hospital? Bioelectronics innovator Todd Coleman shares his quest to develop wearable, flexible electronic health monitoring patches that promise to revolutionize healthcare and make medicine less invasive.
20 Oct 2016 10 min

Your words may predict your future mental health : Mariano Sigman

Can the way you speak and write today predict your future mental state, even the onset of psychosis? In this fascinating talk, neuroscientist Mariano Sigman reflects on ancient Greece and the origins of introspection to investigate how our words hint at our inner lives and details a word-mapping algorithm that…
29 May 2016 12 min

This scientist can hack your dreams: Moran Cerf

What if we could peek inside our brains and see our dreams — or even shape them? Studying memory-specific brain cells, neuroscientist (and ex-hacker) Moran Cerf found that our sleeping brains retain some of the content we encounter when we're awake and that our dreams can influence our waking actions…
24 May 2016 14 min

A new superweapon in the fight against cancer - Paula Hammond

Cancer is a very clever, adaptable disease. To defeat it, says medical researcher and educator Paula Hammond, we need a new and powerful mode of attack. With her colleagues at MIT, Hammond engineered a nanoparticle one-hundredth the size of a human hair that can treat the most aggressive, drug-resistant cancers…
11 Apr 2016 10 min

How we'll find life on other planets | Aomawa Shields

Astronomer Aomawa Shields searches for clues that life might exist elsewhere in the universe by examining the atmospheres of distant exoplanets. When she isn't exploring the heavens, the classically trained actor (and TED Fellow) looks for ways to engage young women in the sciences using theater, writing and visual art…
8 Jan 2016 5 min

Sandrine Thuret: You can grow new brain cells. Here's how

Can we, as adults, grow new neurons? Neuroscientist Sandrine Thuret says that we can, and she offers research and practical advice on how we can help our brains better perform neurogenesis—improving mood, increasing memory formation and preventing the decline associated with aging along the way.
8 Oct 2015 11 min

Could We Cure HIV with Lasers? - Patience Mthunzi

Swallowing pills to get medication is a quick, painless and often not entirely effective way of treating disease. A potentially better way? Lasers. In this passionate talk, TED Fellow Patience Mthunzi explains her idea to use lasers to deliver drugs directly to cells infected with HIV. It's early days yet,…
18 Aug 2015 4 min

Latif Nasser: The amazing story of the man who gave us modern pain relief

For the longest time, doctors basically ignored the most basic and frustrating part of being sick — pain. In this lyrical, informative talk, Latif Nasser tells the extraordinary story of wrestler and doctor John J. Bonica, who persuaded the medical profession to take pain seriously — and transformed the lives…
4 Jul 2015 13 min

Steve Silberman: The forgotten history of autism

Decades ago, few pediatricians had heard of autism. In 1975, 1 in 5,000 kids was estimated to have it. Today, 1 in 68 is on the autism spectrum. What caused this steep rise? Steve Silberman points to “a perfect storm of autism awareness” — a pair of doctors with an…
18 Jun 2015 13 min

Laura Schulz: The surprisingly logical minds of babies

How do babies learn so much from so little so quickly? In a fun, experiment-filled talk, cognitive scientist Laura Schulz shows how our young ones make decisions with a surprisingly strong sense of logic, well before they can talk.
4 Jun 2015 20 min

Sara Seager: The search for planets beyond our solar system

Every star we see in the sky has at least one planet orbiting it, says astronomer Sara Seager. So what do we know about these exoplanets, and how can we find out more? Seager introduces her favorite set of exoplanets and shows new technology that can help collect information about…
1 Jun 2015 16 min

Anand Varma: A thrilling look at the first 21 days of a bee’s life

We’ve heard that bees are disappearing. But what is making bee colonies so vulnerable? Photographer Anand Varma raised bees in his backyard — in front of a camera — to get an up close view. This project, for the May 2015 issue of National Geographic Magazine, gives a lyrical glimpse…
12 May 2015 6 min

Tal Danino: Programming bacteria to detect cancer (and maybe treat it)

Liver cancer is one of the most difficult cancers to detect, but synthetic biologist Tal Danino had a left-field thought: What if we could create a probiotic, edible bacteria that was "programmed" to find liver tumors? His insight exploits something we're just beginning to understand about bacteria: their power of…
8 May 2015 4 min

Sophie Scott: Why we laugh

Did you know that you're 30 times more likely to laugh if you're with somebody else than if you're alone? Cognitive neuroscientist Sophie Scott shares this and other surprising facts about laughter in this fast-paced, action-packed and, yes, hilarious dash through the science of the topic.
4 May 2015 17 min

Greg Gage: How to control someone else's arm with your brain

Greg Gage is on a mission to make brain science accessible to all. In this fun, kind of creepy demo, the neuroscientist and TED Senior Fellow uses a simple, inexpensive DIY kit to take away the free will of an audience member. It’s not a parlor trick; it actually works…
30 Apr 2015 5 min
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