Takeaways From TEDxMIA (Part Two)

One of the best things about TEDxMIA is that along with the ideas, the TEDx concept is spreading across the city. Now there's a TEDxFIU, TEDxCoconutGrove, even a TEDxYOUTH@MIAMI hosted by Cushman School geared towards spreading powerful ideas to Miami's children. And while the blossoming of TEDx discussions across Miami has the potential to mean lengthy and tedious talks at your local watering hole, the basic principle behind TEDxMIA's "Framing the Future" discussion was simplicity. To that end, we are breaking down the speakers' messages and sharing them with you, our friends. We did six yesterday, five more to go.


It's time to get over the whole Jaws thing.
During the 70's a widely popular movie called Jaws hit the big screen. The movie did wonderful things for Steven Spielberg, but really screwed over the shark's image. According to Neil Hammerschlag's discussion, Shark Attack: How to Stop Killer Craving for Shark's Fin Soup, more people are bit by humans in NYC, than are bitten by sharks in the world. Thanks to our culture, our fear is misplaced and the sharks are suffering. Over 73 million are killed a year, many to the Chinese who use the fins (and only the fins) for soup. The worst part is that shark's fin adds no discernible taste, color or smell to the soup and is assumed to be eaten only to show off one's status. Hammerschlag works with the University of Miami to help research and change this trend as well as provide students with a hands-on experience in marine conservation.

We're all ending up at the same place.
Blessed with rave reviews from the New York Times, University of Miami's Program Director of Percussion Svet Stoyanov put on a performance for TEDxMIA goers entitled Musique de Table: A Ballet for Three Sets of Hands. In the piece, Stoyanov demonstrates his fluidity while playing a table top with a mic hookup accompanied by Maria Chlebus and Elizabeth Galvan. Though they often started at different places, as they jest by noticeably turning sheet music at separate times, they all eventually sync up in the end left an unforgettable impression of unity.

You are what you hear. Pablo Landi works to help hospitals and clinics harness the healing power of music for patients and advocated for music's health benefits in his talk Sounds Like Healing. He informed the group that music has the ability to change our energy, mood and brain to improve our health and encourages people to rethink and restructure their auditory surroundings. Landi demonstrated this by juxtaposing the typical sounds of a chemotherapy recovery room with zen sounds of a spa, begging the question why don't we change this?


Think outside the box and around the corner.
Along with speakers, TEDxMIA also streamed video presentations from past TED discussions. Ramesh Raskar's talk Imagining at a Trillion Frames Per Second took a new look at how cameras can be used and made to develop a whole new type of technology. There was a lot of theory in the talk but the main message was that rethinking everyday technology can mean new and groundbreaking discoveries.

Experience life's 'bests' like it's the first time every time.
Shelly Berg's talk Burt Bacharach Is the Secret to Life demonstrated that greatness (like that of Bacharach's) comes from the ability to perform from a place of sincerity while drawing from the well of technique as opposed to being technique focused and dismissing the mood and message of your performance. Berg, the Dean of the University of Miami Frost School of Music, related this to everyday life saying find little things to love in life: waking up to loved ones, driving past Fairchild Tropical Garden, a song, and love and do these things like it's the first time every time. 

Stay tuned to @TEDxMIA to see the edited version of Tuesday night's talk.

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