TED2006 on design and knowing

Thoughts reading Bruno Giussani's running commentary on TED2006:

Bruno points out that a number speakers have three minute slots to address the audience. I think it's a really nice touch.

One such speaker, Roger Mandle, who heads the Rhode Island School of Design, takes the opportunity to tie design to "consilience," the idea that the world, awash with near-permanent information, is headed toward unified knowledge. I'd be interested in how others relate this to Ray Kurzweil's notion of "singularity." The epistemological dimensions are staggering. Here's hoping knowledge leads to understanding.

Bruno on Mandle on design:

[It, design,] is the human activity that creates objects, occasions and environments that extend value and meaning through the processes and the content of the arts and sciences. It also enables tangible outcomes of human aspirations that are practical and ethical significant in both their production and their use.

Speaking of knowing, TED2006 also boldly put Michael Shermer, who edits Skeptic, Rick Warren, whose book, "The purpose-driven life" has sold more than 30 million copies and Dan Dennett, philosopher, atheist and thinker on the nature of consciousness, back to back to back. I'll let Bruno describe it, but I really like Warren's quote: "Questions of meaning are not religious issues, they're human issues."

Questions of meaning, relational issues and human sense-making, like design thinking, are a growing concern. I applaud TED2006 for being forthright about it. I'm finishing up an entry about same that I'll post soon.

See Lunch over IP for more on the conference. Great, great stuff.


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