TED logo

Some of my better-informed friends and colleagues will perhaps think I’ve been sleeping, but thanks to one of those friends and colleagues – lawyer, blogger, business strategist and all-round provocative thinker Noric Dilanchian – I’ve just discovered the TED website and general TED phenomenon.

TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from those three worlds. … It’s a community welcoming people from every discipline and culture who have just two things in common: they seek a deeper understanding of the world, and they hope to turn that understanding into a better future for us all.

You can join TED.com for free and there are gradations of memberships with a dollar figure attached. As part of the free membership you are provided, in good social networking style, with an online profile. I’ve just used up more of the morning than I care to think in filling out my profile: I have to say, it’s been a worthwhile exercise, for example in helping me identify what’s important to me about my business activities.

There are some absolutely fascinating, stimulating, thought-provoking Talks on the site and I intend to feature a TED talk here regularly. The first “talk” below is in the language of music: the avant-garde string quartet Ethel performs “Blue Room”.

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Des Walsh is a business coach and independent, confidential sounding board for business owners and entrepreneurs. A long term advocate of smart, risk-mitigating business use of technology and a certified social media strategist, he is well placed to support businesses in adapting to the rapid changes in the technological, business and social environments. Connect with Des on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. And to stay in the loop, get Des’s weekly Social Business Bites (select snippets of his "best of the week" online finds).