The TED Diaries: Day 3

Vancouver’s TED organizers are keeping BCBusiness readers up to date on the last TED Conference in California before it migrates north to Vancouver in 2014 and 2015. Tourism Vancouver President and CEO Rick Antonson shares his impressions of Day 3.

DAY 3 (click here for Day 2)
Being here at TED in California is like spending one week on the leading edge of everything. As a long term fan of the TED clips on YouTube, now seeing it in real life is remarkable. There’s a wonderful tension in the air that comes from anticipation and an eagerness to make something happen after every presentation. “Once in a lifetime” sounds like a trite phrase, but that is how this resonates. You just don’t want to miss anything. While there are thematic threads to each section of presentations, the actual presenters and topics are so varied that one really doesn’t know what to expect to be awed by next. It would be difficult to overstate the opportunity this represents for Vancouver and Canada. It’s not my place to divulge the specific speakers today—TED does that—yet it’s a launch pad for new technology, education, innovation, social initiatives and more. And it’s a phenomenon.

This is about how the world educates, how we learn active listening, and where people cluster on the breaks to discuss one thing: “how to do more now that we know more?” And here we see the newest of technology thinking—all right in front of us, much of it being said in a public forum for the first time.

When TED comes to British Columbia for 2014 and 2015 it will create near endless spill over meetings and unintended chances to link our own ideas with those esposed from a world stage. It is a near spontaneous combustion of energy-for-the-good. We must find innovative ways to take full advantage of that for our businesses, our communities and our shared future.

And we will. It is an unselfish sharing and an open learning environment and the best of minds taking the wisdom of crowds to build upon fresh views. The sense of there-will-be-collaboration is palpable. The side chats are always with people who want to make something happen. I’d write more but the next session is just starting and I’ll not be one left outside those doors. Magic and motivation are about to be back on stage.