Meet TED, you'll love him…

In 1984, a conference started in California called TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design), in which notable speakers were given 18 minutes to give the ‘speech of their lives’.  It’s been running ever since.

But the big difference now is they have the TED website, which brings together loads of speeches from TED and other conferences from great speakers (Al Gore on climate change, Chris Bangle of BMW on cars as art, Chris Anderson of the Long Tail on technology) and hosts them online for free.


It’s fast becoming the home of great presentations, and perfect for a wander to help feed your puppy.

But it’s also another example of how ‘free’ helps drive businesses.  Without doing this, TED would be a pretty neat little conference in Long Beach, and a few people would know, and go every year, and they might sell out if they’re lucky.

With this site in place though, hundreds of thousands of people around the world know about it… and it sells out hours after the tickets go on sale.  It’s like Glastonbury used to be… people buy expensive tickets well in advance of actually knowing what’s on.  It’s a great business model.

Anyway, have a look at the montage of the top ten speeches for a taste.  And take some inspiration from the way these people present, too, they are masters of the art.