Hey everyone, welcome to my TedX Vienna 2019 event review.
It has been over 2 months since I attended the TedX event in Vienna. And since the topics presented still resonates in me and because that the headline of TedX events is “Ideas worth to share”. I decided to share the key messages I learned with you in this post.
This was the first time I ever experienced TedX in real life. The impression was so strong I dare to say it was a life-changing experience for me. And if it could change my life, I believe it could also change yours.
My first contact with TedX talks
The first time I encountered TedX was on the third of January 2016. At that time I was browsing the Youtube homepage. And all of sudden, the clever Youtube Algorithm decided to suggest a random video. The video immediately caught my attention, because I was deep into self-improvement topic at that time.
I was the third year in a serious relationship and I felt stuck with my life. So I looked over the internet on how to improve myself and how to be greater than life.
The title of the suggested video deeply resonated with me and it was called “The first 20 hours – How to learn anything by Josh Kaufman at TEDxCSU”.
I was like “Wow if I can learn anything in 20 hours, I can achieve whatever I want in my life. Like for example learning basic locking and popping dance moves.”
After watching the video, I was hooked. The speech was clear and crisp and the speaker delivered an engaging storyline in a passionate charismatic manner.
The experience felt totally different compared to the usual business presentations I saw so far. The duration of the talk was no longer than 15 minutes. There were no bloated PowerPoint slides.
The only things that mattered were the speaker himself, the content and the emotions.
How I got a free TEDx ticket
Fast forward, when I saw the opportunity to win a free ticket to TedX Vienna event by entering the competition held at my daily job. I did everything to be one of five, who wins the ticket.
And I won. By a small margin, but I was lucky to be fifth on the leaderboard.
Only later I found out, that the ticket costs whooping 100 EUR. Without a free ticket, I would never intentionally buy a TEDx ticket by myself.
The TedX Vienna venue
At that time, I didn’t have any expectations. I just knew TedX talks are held in small cozy theatres, that can accommodate a small number of attendees.
So when I entered the Museums Quartier in the center of Vienna with my colleague, I was blown away. It was 8 am in the morning and there were already three long queue lines.
We joined the queue and started to mingle with other attendees. There I met Anna, a 21-year-old daughter of a Russian mother and Austrian father. She was there alone and we hit it off well, so I quickly took the chance and got her number.
Thanks to her, and organizers, who offered a free cup of coffee and a bagel for sleep-deprived and starving people in the queue, it was fun to wait in line.
I wanted to meet her later, but I had to stick with my colleague. She is my former teammate, and it does not leave a good impression if I run after the first girl I meet in the morning.
Main areas and attractions
The venue alone was huge. There was the main stage with more than one thousand seats. There was a bar with free drinks and lastly a small theatre hall for after speech talks called “Coffeehouse talks”.
Apart from the main areas, there was also an exhibition hall, where you could find various companies advertising their newest innovations.
Augmented reality for assembly line workers
The first one, that got my attention was using Virtual reality together with augmented reality to guide you through manually complex tasks.
Let’s say you are working on a circuit board assembly line. And your task is to integrate all the electronics pieces into the circuit board.
You put a VR helmet on and the software will show you exactly which piece belongs to which input and in what order.
It sounds cool in theory, but the experience is not seamless yet.
First, VR relies on a Bluetooth beacon integrated into the working desk. Thanks to Bluetooth signal, it tracks your position relative to the circuit board and the components at the same time.
And to work properly, all the items have to be placed in the exact predefined position. You cannot move yourself nor anything on the desk.
Then every time you finish the task, like picking up a correct item. You have to confirm, that you did it, by nodding with your head. I felt it took forever to finish just one simple task.
Regardless of the initial hiccups, that will be solved with better technology, it is the best way to employ an undereducated workforce for complex tasks, that would be too expensive to automate with robots.
Augmented reality for geography classes
The second cool project, that was truly innovative was a sand playground, enhanced with an augmented reality projector.
I didn’t understand what was it for, but after a short demonstration, I got the idea.
Imagine a huge desk filled with sand, that represents a landscape. Then on top of the landscape, an image of the land is projected.
As you play with the sand and change its topological relief, the land image changes itself according to the depth of the landscape.
Let’s say you create a valley in the sand. A few seconds later, the projector will display a river in place of the valley. The same thing happened when you create a mountain. Its peak will be covered by snow.
It is a cool educational tool for kids to play within geography classes. The question is how much does it cost.
Other exhibitions were not that impressive. There was an HR portal, a company selling smart home appliances and finally, a self-help affirmation website, that will send you a weekly newsletter with a curated list of topics worth to share.
When I asked, why they focus only on the Austrian market, they shrugged their shoulders. I like their entrepreneurial spirit, but they will fail. These kinds of websites have much bigger potential by targeting an international audience. We will see.
Food and drinks
Food and drinks were provided for free.
There was a coffee stand in every corner. There was a bar, that handed out nonalcoholic drinks. And that was it when it comes to free refreshments.
As for the food, they give you 3 food tickets clipped together to the badge during morning registration. Be sure to not make the same mistake and just grab the badge and leave in a hurry.
They hand out food tickets immediately with the badge. And they won’t tell you, that you didn’t take the tickets. And so when lunchtime came, I realized I don’t have any food tickets.
For a moment I thought I lost them, but then I remembered, that they didn’t give me any.
I went to the front desk and asked for more. Luckily, they gave me a spare one. It is a bummer, that organizers steal from TedX attendees like that.
The food was served in a small hall outside the main building and it was so crowded with starving people waiting in line for a small piece of food.
It took me nearly 15 minutes to grab a mini beef burger. It was good, but far from enough.
When I was waiting in line, I met a cute girl. She was there to see her philosophy professor Martin Kusch, who just talked about Scientific Expertise in the Age of Post-Truth.
I told her the truth, that his speech didn’t make any sense and I didn’t understand a word. Even though she deeply admired him, she took my honest feedback gracefully.
I took her contact and we met later that day. But when I saw she was there with a friend in a wheelchair, I was polite and left her alone. I didn’t want to be that guy who hit on a hot girl, while her disabled friend is left out.
The program was sandwiched with occasional art performances.
The most memorable ones were the piano session with Albert Frantz, a dope tongue-twisting beatboxing by Mc Slizzer and a poetry performance by Elif Duygu, a young girl, who was unpoetically poetic.
When I heard Elif’s poem, I realized there was no rhythm in her poem. It had a story, it had a key message and her delivery was great, but I was disappointed. I always thought a great poem has to have both story and rhythm at the same time.
Mc Slizzer, on the other hand, made fun of an audience by teaching us how to beatbox in three easy steps. It was hilarious trying to replicate an in-comprehensive beat pattern, that is 1000 level more difficult than a most difficult tongue twister.
Imagine a sound like “Ba Dum Tss!”. Then apply flanger, reverb, echo, scratching and various other audio effects to that sound and make a pattern of it. I tell you. It takes some serious skills to be good at it.
Session 1: It’s about time
I consider the first session to be the most exciting part of the day. You don’t know what is coming and your mind is ready to accept any breaking news ideas, that are presented.
Chase Masterson – How Classic Pop Heroes Can Reach Across Time to Heal Us Today
The first speaker has the worst starting point. People are hungry, sleep-deprived and have high expectations. The impression from the first speech is definitely one that lasts the longest.
Chase Masterson is an actress, who played a mini role in a Star Trek series. And she was there talking about her difficult life as a celebrity and an alcoholic.
It all started when she was abused by her fan, who didn’t like how she treated him. So he published an erotic ad with her public address and telephone number in revenge. After this incident, her life became a living hell.
Apart from the sad story, what made her speech hilariously was her reaction to a random technical issue, that disabled the connection between teleprompter and the PowerPoint controller.
And it happened when she was about to tell an emotional story describing how she helped some guy to stand on his feet when she was volunteering at an alcoholic rehabilitation center.
But because she was relying on visuals and the slides, she stopped her talk and told technical support to fix the issue. They tried to restart the slides multiple times, but it dint work.
Being a typical actress, she memorized her speech and every-time technical support restarted the slides, she skipped to the most recent slide and repeated memorized part of the talk again and again. It was funny and not funny at the same time.
Finally, technical support figured out, that one cable, that was placed under the carpet was malfunctioning because someone from their staff was standing on the cable reduction.
From that point on, everything was ok again. She finished her memorized talk and we applaud.
Sarah E. Hill – It’s Time to Talk About Women’s Brains and the Birth Control Pill
Just by judging from the title of the speech, I expected another propaganda from the feminist community, promoting birth control pills over raw dogging.
I mean, I am not a target audience, I don’t take birth control pills. My ex-girlfriends took it in the past and all shared the same view on them. That it harms their health and messes with their heads.
All I saw was over an educated woman, who dedicated all her life to an arbitrary scientific career path. Collecting PhDs titles along the way and neglecting her natural role as a woman.
For the record, I totally respect ambitious women career-wise, I just personally don’t find them attractive.
Due to this prejudice, I didn’t give her much attention.
But then she got me at the moment when she revealed, what happened when she stopped taking the pills after a decade of daily use.
In her words, the world became more vibrant, more colorful and her life became more enjoyable. She literally reconnected with her inner self as a woman. And most importantly she started to enjoy sex again.
This blew my mind. Pills have this one nasty side effect, that transforms any woman into a man. It suppresses their natural Estrogen production, making them less feminine.
On the other hand, pills artificially increase testosterone production, making them more masculine.
So far nothing surprising has been told.
The real twist is hidden in a reduced sex drive. Not only they won’t like it anymore, but they will also hate you because of it.
The moral story is: don’t force your girlfriend to use the pills, just pull it off in time and your relationship will thrive.
Oded Rechavi – the Biology of Heritable Memories
Oded’s speech was, similarly to the last one, very academic. He lost me in the first 30 seconds after he started describing his career as a biologist.
Only after explicitly saying, that human cells might have a memory and they can pass that memory on the next generations, I woke up.
He was doing some experiments with a microorganism. Trying to figure out, that if an organism is exposed to some kind of an external event. That its offspring will inherit the memory of that event. And whenever it experience that event again, it will behave accordingly.
In simple words, imagine that you learned to play on a piano. In theory, you should be able to pass your piano mastery skills to your children.
So when they sit at the piano for the first time, they will discover they have a “natural talent”. Their muscles will remember the reflexes, the pose and finger positions.
But he could not prove it with laboratory experiments. By scientific standards, it can be called bioscience. But the idea is so intriguing, I believe it’s legit.
How else can you explain, that some people have certain natural traits and talents? They say they are born with it, that God gave them the gift. That they are lucky.
No. It is just a result of the evolution and accumulated effort of their ancestors.
Take for example myself. I have a naturally good eye for beautiful things, I can learn any skill given enough time and I have a pretty good muscular skeleton.
I can only guess, that my ancestors had to be flexible. Constantly adapting to new challenges and learning how to overcome them.
They might have been focused on trade professions, that bought and sold arts.
And they had to do physically demanding tasks. Like carrying two buckles of water from a well few km’s far away from home. Therefore I inherited strong calves, back, and triceps.
My take away from the speech is that you should explore your lineage. Learn more about your ancestors. What areas they were good at and conversely what they suck at.
Learn as much as you can and leverage the positive traits, adapt it to the modern world. Work on those skills and you become the best version of yourself.
Kacey Wong – Resistance, Responsibility, & Humor in the Age of Political Absurdity
The speech from Kacey Wong was about anti-government protests happening at that time in Hong Kong.
And as a person who doesn’t own TV, don’t watch the news. And only read an economy section of online newspapers, I had trouble catching up with the speech.
I didn’t know there were any protests against the Chinese government in Hong Kong. Nor that there was a movement happening.
The only related news I noticed was about some pro-gamer, who was banned from Twitch because he expressed his support to protesters during the live stream.
And this is just one example of someone, who takes action that makes a worldwide impact. Action, that would never happen without a rebel, who started it all.
See, when you fight against a giant enemy, you won’t stand a chance alone. And so to spark the inspiration in others, Kacey Wong decided to protest differently than just by holding a banner and shout empty words on the streets.
Kacey is an artist and he chooses to convey his ideas subtly and indirectly. That is what makes his actions powerful.
On the surface, he is not doing anything wrong. But deep inside, when you watch his action and care to read between lines, you get the irony.
Below are some of his performances, that made the difference.
He started as a loner, sitting on the highway with a paper sign, which says: “I am offering free English lessons”.
People started coming in, wanting to learn English. And in return, when he got their attention, he shared his ideas about the movement.
At some point, after a few exhausting days on the highway, thirsted and hungry laying on the road, a little girl comes to him and offers him a free apple.
And not only her, but more and more people also became interested in his teachings and offered him a hand. At that moment he learned about the power of goodwill.
The moral of the story is. One good action will sooner or later spark countless more good reactions.
On another occasion, when the protests were in full rage, he joined the crowd, while being in disguise.
He looked like any other protester wearing simple grey clothes, except for one little twist. Apart from the long-haired wig, he had black aviator sunglasses on. In simple terms, he looked badass.
And while looking like a member of Yakuza, he leans on the police side of the fence and calmly watches the crowd.
And the main point? He became invisible in the eye of the Police enforcements. While they ID’d everyone else, he remained untouched.
Why? Because of the badass costume. He looked like a government spy, who is there to observe the situation.
As protests became more violent, Kacey’s performances got more absurd. The absurdity is one of the tools to get attention without being arrested.
Another day, he wore a SWAT costume. But instead of holding a gun, he held a trumpet. And as he walked by the protestants he sang a song about the peace.
I think it takes some balls to pull this off.
And finally, when the movement reached the masses, it’s when the group effort showed its true power.
For example, there was a situation, when they had to deal with the last-minute natural disaster. One day before the long-planned protest, the weather forecast turned from sunny to a hurricane.
No danger was expected, but imagine having to stand at one spot the whole day while things are flying above your head.
Then someone got an idea, that to protect protesters from the storm, they could build temporary tents on top of wooden pallets. Someone else made the prototype drawings and posted it on the Facebook group.
People started to chip in, gathering all the necessary supplies. But it was not enough to accommodate thousands of protestants.
Still better than nothing.
Then what happened the next day was a miracle. Someone ordered hundreds of wooden pallets together will all necessary supplies and sent it to the place where the protest was about to happen.
The key message is that you start small. Keep yourself under the radar. And as you go, your movement gets bigger as people with the same mindset join your cause.
With a bigger group behind your back, it is safe to do bolder moves. And before you know it, a worldwide movement is born. Thanks to Kacey Wong, I might start my movement someday.
Session 2: A Moment in Time (ecology and gender gap)
After lunch, the second session started. The topic changed to the present time and all the talks were geared toward ecology, gender gap and similar topics Generation Z likes to talk about over the coffee.
I almost fell asleep and the only interesting person was Joe Hanson.
Joe Hanson – Why I Invited a Million People Beneath a Disappearing Glacier
Joe Hanson is a biologist, again, but instead of spending his whole life in laboratory settings doing experiments. He is not afraid to go out there to nature and fights for its preservation with his bare hands.
His job is to take care of the animal species, that are in danger. And by taking care I don’t mean feeding them in a too. But to track them in the wild, hunt them down and give them a GPS tracker so their population can be monitored.
He started the speech with a beautiful photo of a glacier, but not any kind of glacier. The one with unique azure-colored shade, that is only visible from its beneath, when the sun is shining through.
The photo was taken two years ago. And as you can guess, the glacier is long gone.
He almost sacrificed his eyesight during this trip. The temperatures were so low his right eye bulb almost froze.
In his words: He literally felt how his sight faded into the darkness and how his eye bulb became a piece of ice.
Luckily, it recovered a few days later thanks to the warm environment and a good dose of luck. So don’t panic when your eye bulb freezes, there might still a chance.
Another challenge he faced was during a photo session in a bear’s lair. Their mission was to put a Grizzly bear to sleep.
The problem was that it was a mama bear and when she senses the danger, she will do anything to protect her baby bears.
And as they were laying inside the lair, they saw an angry grizzly running towards them with the intention to tear them apart.
Luckily, the guy with the sleeping rifle didn’t hesitate and managed to hit the mama bear before she reached them with her claws.
Thanks to such incredible heroes, you realize that life can be much more fulfilling than working 9-5. Those guys are the ones, who make an impact, who fight for the preservation of the world we know.
Session 3: Time is of the Essence
The third session was definitely a breeze after long and boring ecology focused informercial part.
My expectation was so low I was surprised, that some of the topics were actually useful to our day to day lives.
Vera da Silva Sinha – What is Event-Based Time?
Next speaker, Vera was talking about something I was doing for a long time. But I didn’t have a name for it.
And it is to stop using calendar based-time and switch to event-based time instead. This radical mind shift will turn any procrastinator into a super productive machine.
In the beginnings of my productivity journey, I tried all kinds of methods. One of the most recommended, was to plan the future in the form of time-slotted tasks.
For each task, give a rough estimation. Then organize estimated tasks into pre-defined time slots. Finally, try to religiously follow a neatly organized calendar.
Sound legit on paper, but it didn’t work.
I even attempted to create a super-smart To-Do List with super-advanced A.I., that will optimize your calendar and schedule all the tasks based on various inputs. But when I tried to follow my A.I. organized calendar, I failed again.
Even though tasks were optimized according to my current energy level, task difficulty, and many more subjective characteristics. I realized, I am not a robot and I didn’t enjoy it at all. I need to feel passion and excitement, else my creativity is gone.
So if my A.I. told me to clean dishes, because I just came home mentally exhausted, I could not force myself to do it.
Even though cleaning dishes is a trivial physical task, that helps me to relax and reboot my brain.
I felt like I lose control over my life. Although I was not procrastinating anymore, I felt miserable.
There was a constant feeling, that I waste time doing something, that does not help me to get closer to my goal.
Time slotting works wonderfully on dull tasks with tight deadlines, but it won’t work on tasks, that need a pinch of creativity.
After I stopped using the calendar and thinking in time slots. I shifted to event-based time planning.
I observed, that when I am passionate about something, I should take action right away, regardless of the day or time it takes to make it happen.
This way, I follow my heart and do exactly what needs to be done. Everything else is secondary.
Since then I never wasted a second of my life ever again. I took charge of my life and do exactly what I want to do.
But what about events, that are out of my control?
In case it is an unexpected event, which forces me to react in a damage control mode, I give it a high priority.
If I get fired, I won’t take time off as others do. I will instead update my LinkedIn profile and start looking for another job.
You get the point.
Just try this method and you will never feel the time wasted ever again.
Katrin Schuhen – Removing Microplastics from Waters – Challenge accepted
The key message from Katrin Schuhen’s speech is that microplastics are not only appearing in the seafood, as we may think but even in the water, that we drink every day.
And to prove her case, she made some kind of filter, that can extract decomposed microplastics from the drinking water.
She applied her filter on a 100l water tank. And a few days later, a bunch of huge plastics balls at the size of a fist emerged out of nowhere.
I could not believe my eyes, seeing them floating on the surface.
So many questions popped up in my head. Like, is it for real? How does it affect our bodies? Is this a commercial for Evian mineral water?
Unfortunately, no satisfying answers were provided. Unless we replace plastic with other 100% recyclable alternative materials, there is no other way around.
From now on, I will reduce my plastic consumption to the minimum.
Session 4: Ahead of our Time
The last session nicely wrapped the whole day by focusing on the future of mankind. It was less about time, ecology or gender gap, and more about what lies ahead.
Jak Wilmot – What I Learned from Spending a Week in Virtual Reality
Jak Wilmot tackled one possible path, which humankind might evolve into. And that is living in virtual reality 24-7.
The idea alone is very popular among science fiction movies and books. For example Matrix, Ready Player One or Surrogate, just to name a few.
The theme is always the same. Starting with people not being satisfied with their real lives.
Then someone invents a virtual reality world, where everything is awesome, where you can be whoever you want to be.
Gradually the whole world opts to escape from the hardship of the real world and move into a virtual paradise.
Fortunately, unlike in the movies, current technology is not yet that advanced.
You have to wear a heavy helmet with a limited range of motion. The graphics look like garbage. And you don’t feel the pain nor the pleasure, which is mandatory for the brain to create an addiction.
Yet, Jak decided to test, what is it like to live in Virtual reality with current inferior VR technology for a week. And results are not that surprising.
He spent the whole week with a helmet on, even during sleep except for his bathroom needs.
Long story short, according to his words, you should not do it. In the end, nothing beats the real world and authentic human interaction.
Our brains cannot be easily tricked to produce endorphin, serotonin, and oxytocin from pixelated audiovisual experiences yet.
It is fair to say, that the initial experience was not that bad. As he fully immersed himself into the new world of endless possibilities. He realized that he could do anything he wanted.
As a creative person, he spent countless hours playing building games. Creating and shaping his own world according to his own rules.
Then it got old fast. What was missing, was some kind of a challenge, or maybe an unpredictable element in the form of human interaction.
He started to feel lonely. So from time to time, he reconnected with his friend and family.
Eventually fed up with pixelated artificially created worlds, he reverts to the environment he was most familiar with. That’s right, Jak started to play a game simulating real life with other people also playing online.
Something like Second life, where you do all the things you are doing in real life minus boring routines and biological needs.
You go to virtual work, earn virtual money and spend it on virtual items. You live a pretty decent consumer life, spending a fortune furnituring a virtual apartment so you can invite your online friends.
Isn’t it an irony? To run from the real world just to end up in the virtual world, doing the same?
Fortunately, such a scenario is lightning years away. Until the graphics are ugly AF, our brains will recognize, that this is not real.
Take for example Jak’s reaction, when he took his VR helmet off after the experiment. He was like: “Wow, someone upgraded the graphics. The real world looks so beautiful”.
So imagine a time in the future, when virtual graphics will be so similar to the real world, that your brain will have trouble recognizing what’s real. Then it will be really dangerous for mankind.
Why? Because we rely on visuals due to it being the most dependable perception method. It is a result of millions of years of evolution. Other senses like sound and touch did not evolve that much.
My point is, the brain will adapt fast. And if visuals provide the most information about the environment, then it will ignore the remaining senses.
Jak confessed, that after the third day, he completely lost the sense of time. His brain was so used to daylight as a visual cue of the current time, that he had to simulate a night time in virtual reality to stabilize his metabolism.
All in all, I think spending a prolonged time in VR is a great learning experience for those, who do not appreciate the reality and are constantly running away to their imaginary fantasy virtual worlds.
Their brain makes the comparison and tells them: “Nope, this is not the life I want to live”.
Matthias Scheutz – Why Robots Need to Be Able to Say No
Another speech that gave us a glimpse of a possible dystopian future. The one, in which robots became an essential part of our lives.
Do you remember the movie with Will Smith I am Robot? A movie adaption of a book bestseller of the same name from Issac Asimov?
Well, speech from Matthias Scheutz was meant to prepare us for events, that happened in that movie.
In the movie, everyone owned at least one robot, that helped the owners with his daily chores. For simple mechanical tasks, robots were accepted and trusted.
But when it came to mentally intensive tasks, robots never raised above the level of a dumb vacuum cleaner. We didn’t let them.
In every other apocalyptic sci-fi movie, every time an AI gained consciousness, it led to human extinction. And as humans, we want to prevent it from happening.
As we learned from a billions year of evolution, the smarter the organism, the higher its position in the food chain.
We will never accept a robot with an AI, that is smarter than a kitchen sink. And this is a conclusion Matthias came into when he did laboratory experiments with robot prototypes.
For the record, he didn’t develop the Skynet per se, so don’t panic yet. He just tested an interaction between humans and robots by faking its intelligence.
The main focus of the study was to get data-points about behavioral aspects of human interaction with an intelligent robot.
When they simulated a robot, that was too perfect and that was listening to every human order. Even dangerous one like handing someone a knife.
The usual response was, your robot is broken. Subconsciously everyone felt, this is wrong.
When they switched the robot’s response to simple No, Matthias got a positive reaction. People confirmed, that robot works well and they even listened to its advice.
The trust was established. And they let the guard down after seeing, that robot is not behaving like a robot, but partly as an imperfect human.
I am on a conservative side and I would never accept the future when robots replace people. So he didn’t convince me. I saw too many apocalyptic movies.
On another hand, I learned an important lesson, that to gain human trust, any artificial business service using A.I. has to provide tremendous value to the end customer in highly specific context-based situations, which is hard.
But after gaining the trust, some kind of switch is turned on in our brain, and we became the most loyal supporters.
Sheyna Gifford – Time to Transform Worlds
Sheyna, the last speaker, explored the topic, which was the most utopian.
For all her life, she envisioned, that human will populate Mars one day. And being serious about her dream, she spent her whole adult life researching the ways of populating Mars.
Then one day her dream came true. She was chosen for an experiment, that aimed to simulate a one year mission on Mars.
I doubt the whole mission was conducted like we often see in survival horror movies.
That the base was buried deep under the ground without any form of an escape. That it had tiny rooms and claustrophobic corridors. That they had to deal with limited food, water, and power supply. And lastly, that the crew mission was composed of psychopaths with no means of communication with the outer world.
Maybe the last part happened. But we will never know the truth if someone went nuts.
According to the picture in the slide, the base was placed in the middle of the desert in the US, on top the hill and it looked like a big playboy mansion.
My point is. It was not a 100% simulation of the real conditions.
And long story short, after she went through this experience, she realized, that she chased the wrong ghost her whole life.
I almost thought that the talk was about shilling Elon Musk’s plan to colonize Mars, but I was wrong.
It is no surprise, that living on Mars can be a romantic idea for one day. But when reality sets in, it’s no different than being in a prison.
And so after such horrifying experience, Sheyna switched her focus from Mars to Earth, doing talks about the beauty of this planet.
Preaching that we should keep Earth alive or the future generations will have to live like prisoners. It would not be TedX if the event didn’t end with an ultimate message like this.
TEDx Vienna Afterparty
After the last talk, we went to the after-party in a dining hall. There I met cool Romanian girls from the marketing team, who volunteered this year.
The headline “about time” was a great hook and a pickup line starting with: “It’s about time to meet each other” worked wonders.
This is it. TEDx Vienna was a life-changing experience. I made new contacts, met cool people and learned about things I would never think of. For a mere 100 EUR, it was worth every penny. Thanks for reading and see you in the next post.