A farmer and a former mortgage broker who quit to be a magazine editor are two scheduled speakers at the Nov. 15 TEDx Jupiter conference, a national thoughtfest that has attracted the likes of Al Gore, Jane Goodall and Bono to its out-of-the-box format.
The speakers, who are not paid, each have up to 18 minutes to make their presentation. Then the speakers and the audience exchange ideas. Presentations are streamed live over the Internet.
“We are all about exchanging bold ideas for positive change,” said Jupiter Farms resident Ernie Lefler, 57, a Navy veteran and former teacher at Palm Beach Gardens High School. “The sharing of knowledge is power.”
About 100 tickets will be sold for the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience event, which is an independently organized TED — short for Technology, Entertainment and Design — event held under TED rules, Lefler said.
Local events such as the one planned in Jupiter are called TEDx. The organization holds two annual conferences — the TED Conference and TEDGlobal — and awards an annual TED Prize for the best idea. More than 1,500 TED Talks are available for free download on its website, and more are added regularly.
TED was started in 1984 in Monterey, Calif., by Richard Wurman as a conference bringing together people from those three worlds. The company in 1990 was bought by the Sapling Foundation, which is based in New York City and Vancouver, B.C. The scope has increased through the years to include more varied subjects from genetics to space travel to recycling.
Vancouver is the site for next year’s TEDGlobal conference, which will run March 17-24. Tickets — which are sold out — are $7,500 each.
During his presentation, Boca Raton resident Jeramy Pritchett plans to tell listeners about Blindfold, the quarterly magazine he started in April 2011. Pritchett, 41, quit his job as a mortgage broker to start the magazine.
“We write about people who are giving back. I want to inspire people to get off the couch and create their own stories,” Pritchett said.
Boynton Beach resident Jason McCobb plans to use his 18 minutes to promote composting and recycling. McCobb, 38, runs Farmer Jay Pure Organics, a 5-acre farm off Lyons Road near Delray Beach. His customers are local restaurants.
“I want to tell people about the importance of buying their food locally. There is so much people can do from theirown backyard,” McCobb said.
A TED event held May 3 in Delray Beach drew 400 people to the city’s Center for the Arts, formerly called Old School Square. The 24 speakers included an opera singer, a 12-year-old entrepreneur and a professional athlete.
Another TED event, this one to concentrate on women’s issues, is planned at the Delray location Dec. 5. About 500 people are expected at the $100 per person event, organizer Becky Woodbridge said.
“We’ll have bean bag chairs, tents and cool places set up to watch the presentations,” Woodbridge said. “TED is not just about the speakers. It’s about the people who attend and the whole event.”
When asked why TED talks are limited to 18 minutes, Sapling Foundation owner Chris Anderson responded in an online interview:
“It’s long enough to be serious and short enough to hold people’s attention. It can go viral very easily. By forcing speakers who are used to going on for 45 minutes to bring it down to 18, you get them to really think about what they want to say,” Anderson said.
Where: Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience.
When: Nov. 15, 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Tickets: Limited to 100, $75 each
Stan Bronson: Executive Director of the Florida Earth Foundation
Jeramy Pritchett: Boca Raton resident who quit job as mortgage broker to start Blindfold magazine
Jason McCobb: Boynton Beach resident and expert in sustainable agriculture
Jean Wihbey: Provost, Palm Beach State College
Twelve speakers are planned.
The events bring together innovators from three worlds — technology, entertainment and design — to share ideas with each other and the audience.They have explored such subjects as genetics, space travel and recycling.