First time ever: TED Prize live

The 2009 TED conference starts today.  Like Davos, I’m sure the conversations this week will be very different than they were a year ago.

There are two TED-related firsts this week worth announcing.

First, this Thursday, February 5th, the TED prize session will be broadcast live in select theaters across the United States.  These are wishes from the TED community to change the world: deep-ocean explorer Sylvia Earle, astronomer Jill Tarter, and maestro Jose Antonio Abreu each have a 2009 TED Prize wish that they will share in a two hour presentation featuring Quincy Jones, Al Gore and Sir Richard Branson and a “surprise guest.”  So be the first to see the results.  Tickets are $20 and can be bought here for theaters in various venues in California, Michigan, New York, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania.  Click on the video below for a preview.

Second, the TED Fellows program was officially announced this morning.  50 applicants from around the world who are leaders in their fields will be chosen to join the TED community.  Cool.

(For those who don’t know TED, it’s the Technology, Entertainment and Design conference that brings together leading thinkers from all imaginable sectors and has them give captivating, 18 minute talks filled with “ideas worth sharing.” If you ever wanted to know where to get inspired – both by content and in what world-class presentations look like – this is the place to go.   Here’s a recent article by Virginia Heffernon titled “Confessions of a TED Addict” with a nice list of TED talk favorites).

And here’s the TED Prize preview.

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