The idea behind TED is simple: spread ideas worth spreading.

On October 13th, we at The Academy will inded spread some ideas worth spreading by hosting our third TEDx event, this one under the theme of “Machines and Minds.” You can learn more about the event at

TED is huge. Every day, 450,000 log on to the TED site. Here’s an interactive map posted just a couple of days ago to show just how broad TED’s reach has become:

The way it works is pretty simple. Over a few hours, we have some really interesting people deliver a talk on whatever they want, as long as it relates to the theme we’ve chosen. We fill the auditorium at the Central Y then have up to a thousand people or so follow our livestream. Later, we post videos of the event on our site and the TED folks watch these. If they really think that one or two are world-class, they post them on their site and that gives our TEDxYMCAAcademy speaker a chance to be seen not by a thousand people, but potentially by hundreds of thousands.

And that’s how ideas worth spreading actually spread.

We think that education should work more like this. Great ideas should become viral ore easily and not get lost in the constant noise of education battles. That’s one of the amazing things about a TED event – it’s not about point and counterpoint, it’s about a buffet of ideas for the mind. You pick and choose what is to your taste.

We’re pretty confident that the event we’re holding on October 13th will be our best one yet. Over the next few days, we’ll finish loading speaker bios to our site. While the event sold out quickly (the term being used loosely, as the event is free), we’ve had many requests for more tickets. While we’re limited by our capacity, please do show up in the auditorium of the Central Y by 09.45 on the day of the event and we’ll fill any and all empty seats. We’ve always been able to accommodate people who show up at the door.

And between now and then, please do spend some time looking at the TED site, get a sense of the wealth of ideas TED speakers share, and a taste of what you’ll be able to sample and enjoy on the 13th.

See you then!

Don Adams, Head of School

Oct 5th, 2012 – TEDxYMCAAcademy!