Hear Malcolm Gladwell and Steve Jobs for Free at TED

It’s always fun and beneficial to go to conferences where subject matter experts let you in on some of their secrets and how to advance in whatever you love doing. The downside of course is that conferences can cost hundreds of dollars and require days of your time. Although they still may be worth it, what if there was a place to go to get this content instantly and free?

Well, believe it or not, one website should be considered the YouTube channel of great speeches. This site, TED.com, offers hundreds of great speeches that cover everything from Money and Happiness to the Axis of Evil Middle East Comedy Tour.

TED.com Ideas Worth Spreading

TED started out as a conference aimed to spread ideas on technology, education, and design in 1984. They still hold annual conferences around the world, but the online site has given access to everyone for free. Additionally, all conference profits are dedicated to a TED Prize with the intention of seeking “goals of global impact.” For more information on TED and the why the group is trying to spread great ideas check out this page.

Best of TED

Advice is easy to find online, but it’s not always what you need to hear. Here are some talks, though, that may change the way you see life and the goals you choose to pursue.

Malcolm Gladwell – On Spaghetti Sauce

  • Gladwell is the well known author of The Tipping Point and Outliers. In this speech, he makes the case that there are no universal absolute desires (e.g. no universally perfect spaghetti sauce), but that each person seeks different things.  Companies and people should embrace this to appropriately find ways to make people happy.

Steve Jobs – How to Live Before You Die

  • Steve Jobs created a following of “Apple Fanboys” with his company’s iPod, iPhone, and Mac computers. This great speech at a Stanford graduation makes the argument that making the most of each opportunity, doing what we love, and counting our days is the best path to success. It also provides viewers an inside look at Steve’s life and what led him to making Apple what it is today.

Daniel Kahneman – The Riddle of Experience vs Memory

  • Kahneman is one of the best known researchers on behavioral economics. In this talk, he analyzes how people’s memories impact their happiness. Let me know what you think about his research on pain in surgery.

Jeff Bezos – Gifts vs Choices

  • Bezos created Amazon.com. In this address to a graduating class at Princeton, Jeff discusses how our lives are more based on the choices we make than on the talents we are born with.

What is your favorite? Have any speeches you want to recommend? Let everyone know in the comments.

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