x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Don't Count The Numbers

This event occurred on
April 30, 2022
Chennai, Tamil Nadu

In a country that boasts a population of nearly 1.3 billion people, the definition of success indefinitely varies. Among this rather vast number, in 2020, the number of people aged between 18-23 was 148,503.66 thousand persons, the number of billionaires as of May 2021, is 140 and further listing of categories to ship Indians in, would be never-ending. Ironically, while counting numbers here, ‘Don’t Count The Numbers’ is an attempt to throw light on those who constantly rise against the odds, despite the statistics.

As in all TED events, TEDxVITChennai wishes to put forth an idea that is worth spreading. And that is where the theme, ‘Don’t Count The Numbers’ comes into play! With its simple, yet surreal attempt to show that success is measured by an individual’s character, rather than a number, TEDxVITChennai believes that this thematic representation of hope would in return, inspire hope. But, for all its usage, what does the word ‘number’ consist of?

The right answer to this question would be- what doesn’t it contain?

Take, for instance, the sheer number of possibilities presented by a person’s age. In today’s world, where it is constantly drilled that ‘life is a race’, ‘Don’t Count The Numbers’ is a tribute to those who have realized that while, yes, life is a race, there isn’t an upper or lower limit on who can run. Word of mouth is proof of mere children, who have found their passion at an early age, and more importantly, excelled, by whatever standard success is measured. At the same time, there exist the elderly, who have gone past society-set standards of age, and proved their mettle. It never is too late, or early, to make a change.

Pallbearers of change haven’t always been on the majorities’ side. It is popularly said, it takes a single ember to light a forest. And truer words haven’t been spoken! Change is such- an individual is capable of inciting chain events, and hence, a revolution is given rise to, all by the efforts of one persistent, determined individual. The portrayal of change-makers, be it real life, books, movies, or any other medium of popular culture very often, has the inclusion of someone who rose against the odds. One, a number, the first and least of natural numbers, and yet, its impact, far more than infinity.

Humans are social beings- they require constant interaction to get going. ‘Don’t Count The Numbers’ takes a fresh perspective on this interesting characteristic, by looking at a difference made by a small group of people, or as they are appropriately termed a minority. Take, for instance, the various communities present in India, and their undue influence in shaping her culture. If one is a small number, that has a massive impact, then by the same argument, a smaller group in comparison to a larger group (a majority), that has brought something to the table, is a tale to tell!

TEDxVITChennai values human spirit and grit over anything else- even the impossible is possible when there is a will. This is a point proven, over and over again, by those who have refused to let their financial conditions dictate their lives. With little to nothing in the bank, India has seen the likes of countless people rise from rags to riches through sheer grit and determination. Success isn’t quantifiably measured. Indeed, here, money is just a number, and as the theme goes, don’t count the number.

Last, but certainly not least, is the tale of life as we know it. Life isn’t just ups and downs- if a ratio were to be drawn, the number of failures seen would be far more than the number of successes. With this chosen theme, TEDxVITChennai wishes to shine a light on how an individual’s excellence isn’t determined solely by the number of times they have succeeded, but also by the sheer number of failures they faced prior. Because, as the saying goes, a failure is a lesson, and if the plural sense is applied, multiple failures imply multiple lessons. The greater, the better! Oddly, by counting the number of failures, a realization sparks that one genuinely, needn’t count the numbers.

‘Don’t Count The Numbers’, if put simply, is an attempt undertaken to show that the definition of success varies by more than one. If explained in one sentence, it would be - ‘Life is more about the climb than it is the mountains.’

VIT University, Chennai Campus
VIT University, Chennai Campus, Village: Keelakottaiyur, Vandalur-Kelambakkam Road, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600048
Event type:
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Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Abhijith Asok

A Harvard graduate and a Data Scientist at Microsoft, Abhijith Asok revels in his ability to think out of the box. A model and natural motivator, he believes that life has more to offer than what it seems. With a natural charm and love for literature and numbers, Abhijith is a master of all trades, with love for everything that he does. As someone who deeply believes that life is all about meaning, he is certain to leave a mark.

Satshya Tharien

A prolific content creator, with a diverse past that spans journalism and short format video series. Satshya appeals to a young and wide audience on instagram with her authentic and creative approach to storytelling in the reels format. She is also the podcast host of Chumma Conversations, and the Co-founder of Kudla COVID-19 Volunteers, a citizen’s collective to mobilize resources to fight the pandemic. She stands out among young social media stars with her natural charisma and creativity.

Sidhaanth Dharmadheeran

Sidhaanth Dharmadheeran is the co-founder and CEO of Warhorse, a Chennai-based educational enterprise dedicated to training students and corporates in communication and articulation. A powerful orator and visionary, Sidhaanth aims to instill the necessary tools of critical thinking and communication into the Indian student community, via the medium of public speaking. An enthusiastic storyteller, Sidhaanth can weave the philosophical fabric of human lives into invigorating tales of inspiration.

Srinidhi Karunakaran

Srinidhi Karunakaran (aka Ashi) is a 20 year old female tech entrepreneur based in UAE. Founder and CEO of Dude Just Dude, her venture promises to connect the creatives, designers and influencers, enabling an innovative platform for the marketplace. She is a highly motivated individual and rightfully, as she claims, a magnanimous Genz powerhouse. With her creativity, enigma and unlimited charms, Ashi is sure to capture all eyes and hearts.

Organizing team


Chennai, India

Manoj Nair