Changing the world, a hundred people at a time

 

It is perhaps unwise to dwell on the happenings of a single day. Yet as we saw months of determined work materialise into a world class TEDx event on the 19th of August, we knew this day would be etched into our memories forever.

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The stage, which looks like a mosaic of The Thinker, shows how little pieces (symbolic of varying perspectives) come together to form a wholesome idea inclusive of all thoughts

 

 

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Artwork on display during the event

The day began with conversations. People were connecting with new faces and interacting with familiar ones in a new way. The energy was electric and contagious. They now had something stronger in common. Ideas. Our vision of spreading a culture that is participatory, informal and explosive had begun to take shape.

 

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Audience members engaging with Dr Sukant Khurana, Scientist at Central Drug Research Institute, Lucknow

Aside from the talks, its the activities that end up making a great TEDxperience. We encouraged the audience to network with each other even before the talks began via the quirky and fun conversation starters. After the audience had warmed up to each other  we began the Curator’s address, marking the beginning of the event.

To keep people busy throughout the day, we had two unique activities: the  TEDxNITTrichy Bingo and the photo booth. The bingo was tailored specifically to the event, where we made the audience complete and cross out tasks listed on the sheet, so as to form the iconic “X” of TEDx. Our photo booth was an absolute rage during lunchtime, and the testimony to that are the numerous photos from the day with the hashtag “TEDxNITTrichy” on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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Post-lunch: A member of the audience enjoying a candid moment at the photo-booth

 

After the first talk had finished, we decided it was time to get our audience’s minds racing. We presented them with Ultimate Tic-Tac-Toe sheets after the first talk, a game composed of nine tic-tac-toe boards arranged in a 3-by-3 grid. Considering the fact that the strategy in this game is much more conceptually difficult than normal tic-tac-toe, it did a solid job in keeping the audience engaged. 2

The activity that stood out from the rest, however, was the mini human library event.  Post Harshad Fad’s talk, we had the audience fill out a questionnaire that asked them about the story they would want to narrate had they been a human book. Following that we shortlisted a ‘human book’ out of every table and then arranged for a 20-minute interactive session between the ‘readers’ and the book.

All of this however, is not to take away from the quality and brilliance of our speakers. To keep you curious and excited for the video releases, we won’t delve into the details of their talks. We will tell you this much: our speakers ranged from senior business executives to neuroscientists to entertainment industry professionals to corporate trainers and much more, and all of them had really valuable and really exciting things to say.

On that lazy saturday, we managed to build a magnificent mosaic. A mosaic of ideas, talents, skill sets, hopes and dreams that all came together to form an optimistic and energetic vision of our shared futures.

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