Themes Evolution's Genius

Evolution's Genius The red-eyed tree frog, photographed in 1998 in Panama by TED presenter Frans Lanting.

TED adores great design. A growing number of speakers focus their Talks on the most elegant designs that exist: those in the natural world.

Janine Benyus points out that nature has to its advantage around 3.8 billion years of "research and development," and lists wonderful examples of natural designs that solve intractable human engineering problems. Juan Enriquez describes how nature is driven by a remarkable information engine -- DNA -- and what that means for our future.

Richard Dawkins, perhaps the world’s most outspoken and influential evolutionary biologist, describes a "queer" natural world abundant with surprises and peculiarity, and warns us that even our minds are products of evolution. Likewise, Steven Pinker, Helen Fisher and Dan Dennett present insights on how evolution has shaped the human mind, and how its configuration affects love, sex, parenting and the spread of ideas. Kevin Kelly, meanwhile, advances his conception of technology as a new branch of life -- which is evolving accordingly.

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Play_iconDennis vanEngelsdorp: A plea for bees

Dennis vanEngelsdorp: A plea for bees

16:28 Posted: Dec 2008

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Play_iconRichard Preston: The mysterious lives of giant trees

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Play_iconSteven Pinker: Human nature and the blank slate

Steven Pinker: Human nature and the blank slate

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Jonathan Haidt: The moral roots of liberals and conservatives

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David Gallo: Life in the deep oceans

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Play_iconSpencer Wells: A family tree for humanity

Spencer Wells: A family tree for humanity

20:53 Posted: Aug 2008

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Play_iconLouise Leakey: A dig for humanity's origins

Louise Leakey: A dig for humanity's origins

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Play_iconRobert Full: Robots inspired by cockroach ingenuity

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Play_iconSusan Blackmore: Memes and "temes"

Susan Blackmore: Memes and "temes"

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Play_iconJoshua Klein: A thought experiment on the intelligence of crows

Joshua Klein: A thought experiment on the intelligence of crows

10:06 Posted: May 2008

Views: 2,049,450 | Comments: 291

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