Magda Marcu

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Create a three minutes version for each TED talk

I find it much easier to hook people up to TED if they have the option to watch a short talk first which will raise their interest to find out more and then they'll watch the average 20 minutes one.

A second argument is that we are all so busy and have so many things on our plates and there are not enough hours in a day. It's not a lack of interest that I am concerned about, but rather the trade off one needs to make to put aside 20 minutes which they usually don't have for something they don't know if they would like or not. How do you choose what talk to watch when there are five you may be interested in and you don't have more then half hour to do it?

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    Feb 17 2011: Is there a way to crowd-source this? Could we have volunteer TED Video Editors the same way we have volunteer TED Translators?
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      Feb 17 2011: I have an idea on how to make this possible.

      I think this could be easily done by implementing additional function to TED.com video player, and a web based tool for editing, and of course with help of Volunteers.

      The web based tool can be a place where volunteers(editors) can select parts of the video, which need to be included in shortened version. Based on selections, application saves timeframes of selected parts in to a data file.

      Then, a feature can be added to TED.com video player, which enables it to play only selected parts and skip through(jump) unselected parts, only using information from corresponding data file.

      So, when people watch TED talks there should be option to chose to watch shortened version if applicable.

      Since, only starting and ending time value of segments are saved into data file, it will be very small in size, therefore effective. Moreover, because of this system, no video editing experience and/or knowledge will be required from volunteers.
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        Feb 17 2011: This is a fantastic way to resolve the problem. Do TED administrator agree with the idea of implementing this additional function to the video player?
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        Feb 19 2011: I agree. This is a wonderful way to execute this!! Great idea.
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      Feb 17 2011: I see this idea as in different angle as not all the TED talks can be trimmed to fit into 3 minutes time. Sometimes, talks need time to make the argument clearly in the way to convince the idea that worth spreading.

      I believe by adding some interactive elements to the video will do the trick. As the RSA doing RSA Animate as they trim the hour long speech into 10 minutes time-lapse video with lovely graphical explanation. Some videos were featured in TED in the Best of the Web segment too. (e.g: http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_changing_education_paradigms.html)

      And I can remember sometime ago, BBC asked their viewers to come up with mashup using their Digital Revolution series' footages. People came up with cool yet incredible mashups. My favourite this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfOzs7IRbeo

      This is good idea to have short footage of TED talks with interactive and graphical elements. Crowd-source works just like a magic. And translations of TED talks are always gone through moderation process so as that practice can be adopted to this very idea. Creativity of crowd is another source of wonderful ideas.
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      Feb 17 2011: If you are going to do it, I would love to get involved.
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    Feb 17 2011: I have thought before that it would be cool if there was a TEDxUnder6Minutes, where every talk fits into the under 6 minutes category. It's a further intriguing challenge to see speaker condense their ideas down to their very essence but I do not think I would like to see existing talks truncated. There needs to be a mix of length.
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    Feb 17 2011: I think its a neat idea. Makes me think of the 8 minute recap of LOST on the dvd's. I got a kick out of those previews so in a sense I could see people being pulled into a TED talk based on a quick preview. However, they are not really long videos to watch and it doesn't take much to get interested in them. Plus, looking at the idea from a context perspective, it would be very difficult to cover the context of the talk along with the point of the talk in a short preview. Plus, it could lead to misinformation, which is something I am very much against.
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    Feb 17 2011: Hi Magda, nice idea, but I'm not sure this will help to hook up people.

    I saw somewhere a viewer which allowed me to see a text describing the idea of the video sequences in the talk.
    So you started to watch the whole talk, but could easily see what's next, and fast forward if you wished.
    Maybe this solution is applicable for TED Talks too.

    Regarding how to find more time for TED:
    Since I have found TED, I watch less TV, that's so simple.
    So I have time for watching "long" talks and even for translation / review activity.
    For some talks I really wish they are even longer.
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    Feb 17 2011: I have this example of two talks on the same subject, one a three minute talk and the second a twenty minute talk www.ted.com/talks/dean_ornish_says_your_genes_are_not_your_fate.html and
    www.ted.com/talks/dean_ornish_on_healing.html

    It could simply be easier to convince someone to spend three minutes watching a video and suggest they watch the longer version if they liked the short one.
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    Feb 17 2011: I think this is a good idea but for not all talks, and not necessarily 3 mins, it can also be few minutes more. But the purpose of doing so should not be hooking people up. Because, I think that it would be more effective and fair, if people were hooked up by giving them a chance to have some kind of a TED experience.
    I really appreciate TED talks, and I enjoy them. However, when I watch some TEDxtalks there some moments when the idea, that this talk could really be made shorter, comes to mind.
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    Feb 17 2011: I'm sorry but I simply don't see TEDtalks as for those with a short attention span who need a short trailer to get them interested.

    My advice is to simply sit down with them and watch a whole talk with them that you think would engage them, one of the many ten-minute talks if necessary. If that fails, then it's not for them and it's their loss.