I attended TEDxSydney on Saturday which had moved to iconic Sydney Opera House as a venue. This year’s 2,200 attendees were deliciously catered for by Matt Moran and the grass roots movement ‘Grow it local’.
Telstra, Qantas, Samsung, U of Syd and NAB were some of the main sponsors, lending a more corporate component. At the same time the conference was still retaining a lot of the activism and volunteering spirit.
Best musical performer (IMHO) was Kate Miller-Heidke, best MC Jess Scully, most famous attendee Marc Newson and probably most powerful speech by Omar Musan.
The above photos are posted under CreativeCommons from TEDxSydney’s flickr stream.
The talks themselves are still being edited so I will update this blog with another post when they are available on their YouTube channel
Here are my personal favourites from the films they played in between:
This is a project we at Reactive worked extremely hard for over the last 2 months. It’s called ‘The Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented” and this is its story.
The Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented
Children with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) suffer from progressive deterioration of their muscles. The kids lose the ability to use their arms and for example sign their name very early in their life. At the same time the Australian government does not have a policy on this disease, meaning there is no research support to help halt or cure DMD. This is why we created The Most Powerful Arm, a bionic arm with which you can help wake up the politicians. Please sign a petition to the Australian government, asking them to start supporting the important research on this crippling disease. Watch the trailer below:
The arm is publicly installed, first in Customs House Sydney, and now in Ariel Book Store. It takes your signature via your Facebook login, also accesible thorough your mobile phone if you happen to be in front of the installation. It then signs the petition for you, with a real pen on paper. It uses the original handwriting of one of the children affected, Jacob Lancaster, which we turned into a typeface. A photo camera will then take a picture of each signature and post it to the respective signee’s Facebook wall.
I really appreciate any help you can give to the cause. We have smashed the original target of 20,000 which was required to have the petition considered by parliament. But the more signatures we get, the more weight it will have. Please add your signature at TheMostPowerfulArm.com and if you want and can afford to, you can also donate to make the trials happen.
Below you find our Making Of The Most PowerfulArm that explains the whole signing experience in detail.
Here are some photos from our launch day in Customs House.
The Most Powerful Arm is a collaboration between Reactive, Finch and Havas Worldwide / Red Agency. Special shout out goes to Emad Tahtouh who heads the creative technology at Finch and who not only had the idea but also tirelessly worked on all the robotics, video, photos and backend technology to make the arm the most powerful ever invented.
I wanted to connect two of my previous posts about electronic tinkering with Arduino and the fabulous Kickstarter project LIGHT by Moore’s Cloud (a web-enabled, interactive lamp so to say). NinjaBlocks come at AU $199 a pop and contain an Ubunta-operated mini computer (similar to the LIGHT). And you can control the Ninja’s LED eyes for extra geek appeal. Ninja Blocks allow you to hook up any sensory input in an “If This – Then That” fashion. You can use Arduino’s microcontroller language or a ready made sensor, and operate everything from the NinjaBlocks dashboard.
Check out their little summary here: http://new.ninjablocks.com
A mate of mine, Nick Clark, who was also part of the ‘Snake The Planet‘ mobile projection, is helping to promote these Ninja blocks. And they are selling like hot cakes. Get amongst it.
This project is so obviously awesome: a colour-changing light, connected to the web, all open source and ready to plug into whatever trigger you want to throw at it. In geek terms, it’s a lamp connected to a LAMP stack (funny, huh?).
And here is where you need to pay attention: we all need to pledge to buy one. My colleague Troy and I have pledged one each already on Kickstarter. Possibly to light up our window at Reactive every time a developer breaks the build server. Or whenever someone opens the beer fridge.
So it’s pretty transparent that you need one as well. Heck, everyone needs a lamp connected to the web, right? So go, pledge a donation on their Kickstarter page.
Even if you don’t want the lamp, their ‘behind the scenes’ blog is a great read. You’ll learn about the Kickstarter funding model, their community, and how to communicate if you ever want to start some crowd funding project yourself. Have a read here: http://blog.moorescloud.com