TEDxOtaniemi 2017 - FAQs for speakers

Got questions about becoming a TEDxOtaniemi speaker? Below are some FAQs to fill you in on what's involved. If you're still left wondering about something, get in touch with your coach or the speaker curator!

What does it mean to be a TEDxOtaniemi speaker?

TEDx events are independently organized and follow TED’s mission of ideas worth spreading. Central to the speech is a great idea—small, big, or somewhere in between—geared to a general audience. After the main event, TEDxOtaniemi talks will be posted on YouTube (you can find last year’s here) and selected talks may even find their way to the main TEDx page, where you can find a number of talks from around the world on a wide range of themes.

TEDx -tapahtumat järjestetään aina vapaaehtoisvoimin, tavoitteenaan jakaa tärkeitä ideoita laajemmalle yleisölle. Puheiden tärkein ominaisuus on juuri tämä merkityksellinen idea - pieni tai suuri - joka esitetään yleisölle sopivalla tavalla. Tapahtuman jälkeen, puheet julkaistaan YouTubessa (viime vuoden puheet löydät täältä) ja osa puheista saattaa jopa saada näkyvyyttä virallisella TEDx sivustolla, jonne kerätään puheita ympäri maailman, monista eri aihepiireistä.

What is speaker coaching?

We recognize that invited speakers may have varying levels of experience (maybe none!) in public speaking. It’s also worth noting that TEDx talks are stand-alone talks and not lectures or discussions. Regardless of your experience, a good TEDx talk requires planning. Our speaker coaches will help you find your voice, focus your topic, and make sure the talk fits within the TEDx style.

If you agree to give a talk, we’ll send you a starter package to help you get going. In principle, we recommend that you start brainstorming as soon as possible as it can take some time to find the core idea. While we hope you start writing earlier, our joint coaching sessions will start in early June and all talks should be ready by early August — as they must be reviewed prior to the final event. You will have the opportunity to practice during coaching and at the final rehearsal (August 18, TBC), where we will do a full run-through onstage at the venue, the Design Factory.

Ymmärrämme, että tapahtumaan kutsutuilla puhujilla on vaihtelevasti kokemusta puheiden pitämisestä. On myös tärkeä huomata, että jokainen TEDx -puhe on oma kokonaisuutensa, eikä siis ole osa paneelikeskustelua tai luentoa. Riippumatta puhujan kokemuksesta, hyvä TEDx -puhe vaatii suunnittelua. Valmentajamme auttavat sinua löytämään oman tyylisi, löytämään puheesi punaisen langan ja varmistavat, että puhe sopii TEDx -konseptiin.

Mikäli olet kiinnostunut liittymään TEDx -puhujien joukkoon, lähetämme sinulle pian lisää käytännön infoa tapahtumasta sekä muuta tukimateriaalia. Idean kiteyttäminen kannattaa aloittaa mahdollisimman pian, sillä ydinviestin löytäminen saattaa viedä aikaa. Kaikille puhujille suunnatut yhteiset työpajat ja valmennukset alkavat kesäkuun alussa, mutta toivomme, että voit aloittaa puheen valmistelun jo ennen sitä. Puheen tulee olla valmis elokuun alussa, jotta aikaa jää valmiiden puheiden läpikäymiselle ennen varsinaista tapahtumaa 19.8. Puheen pitämistä pääset treenaamaan valmennuksissa, sekä kenraaliharjoituksessa (alustavasti sovittu 18.8.) itse tapahtumapaikalla, Design Factorylla.

What about language?

It’s possible to present in Finnish or English and we plan for a mixed-language program. Finnish might be most suitable for one topic while English might be best for another, especially if you want to reach a wider audience. We have native-level support for both languages from a coaching perspective.

Puheen voi pitää joko suomeksi tai englanniksi. Itse aihe saattaa jo määritellä kummalla kielellä puhe kannattaa pitää, mutta pidä mielessä, että englanninkielinen puhe todennäköisesti saavuttaa suuremman yleisön kuin suomenkielinen. Valmentajiemme joukosta löytyy kielitaitoa tukea kummankin kielisten puheiden valmistelua.

Apps for efficient learning: 8 picks from the TEDxOtaniemi crew

PHOTO SOURCE: PIXABAY.COM

These are the most liked apps right now for efficient learning according to our team.


Have you ever wondered how to start a new language easily, when you don't really have the time to go to any classes or devote your time for certain hours? Or would you like to learn how to get your brain more effective?

Our TEDxOtaniemi crew has curated a list for you so that you can check out some of the coolest learning apps right now in the market. Some of them are highly gamified and thus addictive – a word of caution! ;) 

We hope this list inspires you to try out new things and explore the amazing world of apps. May this list bring you joy, meaning, and usefulness to your daily life!

Get your learning mode on with these wonderful apps:

1. Duolingo (Languages)

This app is wonderful! Not only is it easy to use but it also lets one decide what language one wants to learn and when. It's also gamified so you get easily hooked by leveling up!

Version for all devices.

2.  Khan Academy (Learn anything)

In the academy, you can study pretty much anything with a wide selection of courses. It's definitely worth giving a try! They even add new courses on a daily basis, so you won't get bored.

Works in web.

3. Treehouse (Software development)

Treehouse might be the most advanced learning platform for learning to be a software developer. You can actually do the coding in their platform so it does not require any separate installations for you to run code.

Works in web.

4. Itunes University

Watch and learn from recordings of talks and lectures from the worlds top universities like Yale, Cambridge, Harvard or MIT. You can also have discussions with other students or even create your own courses!

Only for IOS (iPhone & iPad).

5. Memrise (Languages)

Memrise is a very practical app, since whenever you're busy you can review words and phrases even in the bus or the subway. Memrise offers courses in languages, and once you select a language, there are four practice methods that you'll go through.

Try the intensive speed review game, in which you have to connect as many words to their meanings as possible within a very short time span. Every time you get something right, you get points that will help you advance to the next level.

Version for all devices.

6. Lumosity (Cognitive abilities)

This app is perfect for training your wits and intelligence. It's a miniature, gamified learning app for your brain. The app includes over 50 fun games to get improve your cognitive abilities.  

Version for all devices.

7. Acceleread (Productivity)

With this app you can practice the speed of your reading. Thus, you can read faster, which saves your time. The app offers a guided course, which not only takes into account your current reading level but also your desired performance goals.

Only for IOS (iPhone & iPad).

8. Yousician (Music)

You should really try this app if you want to learn how to play musical instruments step-by-step! Tutorials fit your level and follow your learning process which is fun and entertaining at the same time. Currently Yousician supports all acoustic and electric guitars, bass, piano and ukulele.

Tell us in the comments what type of learning-related apps you would recommend for others!


5 facts you probably didn’t know about Aalto Design Factory

This year TEDxOtaniemi will be held on August, 19 at Aalto Design Factory (ADF). Here are 5 facts you probably didn’t know about Aalto Design Factory.

1. Factory itself was born from a research project called the Future Lab of Product Design (FLPD). ADF was the first official building of Aalto University.

2. ‘I wish, I like’ is facilitated team feedback activity where team members of a team engaged in a creative project get to provide and receive both positive and constructive feedback in written as well as in spoken format. Sessions are processed in a safe and systematic way. The format was developed by Satu Rekonen through dozens of sessions organized since 2011 on several different interdisciplinary courses taking place mainly in Aalto Design Factory. Facilitated feedback sessions were inspired by d.school at Stanford University where Satu first encountered the possibilities of the “I Like, I Wish” –approach. Satu received the School of Engineering’s Teaching Achievement of the Year 2014 award for this method. The method is packaged onto an open website: ilikeiwish.org

3. Aalto Design Factory has Hugging Points – place where you get hug in no time!

4. Open work spaces are available 24/ 7.

5. 10 000 people coming annually to visit ADF from 40 different countries.

For more information check the website http://designfactory.aalto.fi/

Why Playing Is an Important Part of Language Learning​

My memories of language lessons in Finland (and having studied four languages, there were quite a few) mostly include endless vocabulary lists and memorising grammar rules. Fun? Yeah, not really. Yet my love for languages and communication was so strong I became a linguist and a language teacher.

My studies and work experience in the UK opened up many new doors for me. It also opened my eyes to a whole new approach to language learning (and teaching): what if learning a language was so much fun, you’d forget you were learning? Children learn languages more easily than adults and although there are many reasons for this, one explanation is that children do not worry about making mistakes or embarrassing themselves. They may not be able to use learning strategies like adults, but they seem to acquire languages without any.

Therefore, I started to wonder how I could create a similar learning experience for adults. In the UK, communicative approaches are usually considered to be the most effective ways to teach languages. Often it is enough to get the student discussing topics they are interested in, as the language becomes a tool for sharing their thoughts and experiences. But often it is necessary to take a step further: playing communicative games or roleplaying do wonders with students.

Acquiring a new role helps the students to shift their focus from simply the structure of a language to using it for a communicative purpose. It also gives the students the opportunity to be more creative with the language and to use it in new ways. They can practise negotiation skills or become shop-keepers and politicians.

Not only is this often more useful than learning grammar rules by heart, it’s likely to be more motivating. In learning, positive experiences are crucial for motivation. Of course, learning isn’t always just fun and can require a lot of effort. But, learning any language should be about acquiring the ability to communicate with people which should, in most cases, be enjoyable.

I see my role primarily as a motivator and a creator of language learning opportunities. The students will hopefully carry those good memories and the knowledge gained through them for years to come. And, as a bonus, I get to see many happy faces and there are a few giggles in it for me as well.  


Blog post by Salla Hänninen, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer

TEDxOtaniemi volunteering

Volunteering is the commitment of time and energy, for the benefit of society and the community, the environment, or individuals outside one's immediate family. It is undertaken freely and without concern for financial gain.

Volunteering can give you the opportunity to try something new, gain experience, develop skills, improve your career prospects, build confidence and meet new people.

There are about 70 volunteers who are making TEDxOtaniemi happen this year. They carry out various duties before, during and after the event. Some of them would like to share with you their inspiring stories.

Niina Haataja, Human Connection Strategist for TEDxOtaniemi 2016 talks about her reasons for putting so much of herself into the event. 

“I became a volunteer since I love TED Talks and inspiring speeches. I am also intrigued by learning and spreading insights and knowledge, which is exactly what the TEDx community aims at. Now, having met all of the amazing people involved in the creation of the event, I am more than happy to be part of the awesomeness!”

- Krista Palmu

 

“I aim to have a long career in Event Production/Management, yet my experience is currently limited to mostly parties, weddings and PR events. I wanted to expand my knowledge in order to have a wider understanding of different types of events and TEDxOtaniemi came just in time right before my graduation and job seeking!”

- Tanja Ulma

 

“I have been involved in organizing very different kinds of events for almost 10 years now, I've always liked the mood. Today my job doesn't allow me to keep creating awesome happenings and since I am a big fan of TED I kinda jumped on the occasion to be a part of this and discover a new kind of event production & coordination that I don't know much about.”

- Emilie Calmettes

 

“I wanted to be a part of a project that would give a platform for people to speak about education and learning, since those subjects are very important to me. Meeting new people and working together in a new team were also things I wanted.”

- Fairouz Hussien

 

“I wanted to experience how people work together when everyone is there by their own choice, doing what they want to do without any financial gain, and still wanting to create something amazing.”

- Tanja Täppinen

 

“I ride the Metro With No Pants in Helsinki, organized an Underground Vampire Raves in an abandoned hospital, arrange Zombie Invasions downtown and in Linnanmäki, create Survival Games that have no survivors, bring ancient practices and rituals back to life in Suomenlinna UNESCO site, also facilitate mass Pillow Warfare…
I design, plan and execute all sorts of participatory experiences and events, bring to life unique fun projects because more participation is needed in all aspects of public life and city culture. We all learned to play, now and again we just need a reminder.”

- José Jácome

 

“I have become a volunteer for TEDxOtaniemi first of all because I am a huge fan of TED talks and it has been my inspiration for a long time. Secondly, it is a brilliant opportunity to meet like-minded, open and proactive people. I am very grateful to be a part of it!”

- Olga Andreichik

 

“I became a TEDx volunteer to do something, and especially something meaningful. This specific event especially inspired me due to the topic. This is something I am passionate about as a person who enjoys having fun and as a future teacher.”

- Hannele Hiltunen

 

“So it all started when a friend of mine sent me a message saying "hey, I saw an announcement that TEDxOtaniemi is looking for volunteers, I think you could be interested". I didn't know too much about TEDx events, but I started doing some research. What I liked about it was the open atmosphere – different people from different backgrounds joining together, willing to listen and learn from one other. That kind of openness is not too common in Finland :P”

- Emmi Vilkanen

 

First of all I knew that such an event would gather inspiring and talented people. People that became volunteers because they want to share their knowledge, implement their skills in the new environment, teach each other and motivate to achieve a common goal which is an awesome TEDxOtaniemi. I love to learn new things, especially when playfulness is involved.  So far, so good - I got to know new marketing tools, took dozens of photographs and recorded a few videos, engaged in communication process and met wonderful people!

- Emilia Kwiatkowska-van Dijk

 

And you? Why did you become a volunteer? What is your story?


Blog post by Emilia Kwiatkowska-van Dijk, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer


Learn to fail, don't fail to learn

These days, the world is quite a hectic place to live in. We’re constantly given more tasks, facing new challenges and expected to do more with less. The pressure is strong and expectations are high. I think all of us have been there, doubting ourselves: what if I can’t do this?

And that’s where it all goes wrong. The second we start doubting ourselves, we start building a foundation for failure. When we create a picture of a negative outcome in our minds, we have actually just taken the first step towards it. Human mind is a powerful tool, so it must be used wisely. Intentionally. Fearlessly.

Ultimately, it is not our failures, but the fear inside us that destroys the potential for success.  The fear that makes us so scared we don’t even try. That fear blurs our vision, makes us feel insecure and question our own abilities. Whenever you’re doubting yourself, I want you to ask yourself: what’s the worst that could happen? I dare to claim that in virtually all the possible scenarios, the world is not going to end. Your life is not going to end. Really, it is not that serious – you just have to find the courage to take the jump and see what happens. Yeah, you might not end up where you planned, you might not achieve exactly what you planned, but the thing is: you learn.  And you’ll get somewhere, that’s for sure. Sometimes, when things don’t go as planned, they actually take you towards new opportunities that may eventually turn out to be even better than the original plan.

“Life is far too important a thing ever to talk seriously about.”                                                          – Oscar Wilde

But still, quite often, failure scares us. And the more we think about it, the bigger it grows in our minds, eventually creating a shadow over us. A shadow of discourage and insecurity. Success may sometimes seem unattainable or distant, but if we think about it that way, we have missed something crucial: this world is full of opportunities. Chances to be taken, ideas to be developed, choices to be made. Possibilities are endless. On the other hand, there is only one certain way to ultimate failure – and that is, to give up trying. Success is a product of many things, but the main ingredients are hard work and perseverance. Nobody is a master the second they start, and that is why practice is needed. Failure is needed. Failure makes learning possible.

“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”                                                           – Thomas Edison

Success is attainable for all of us, but it doesn’t come without work. In order to learn, we must go beyond our comfort zone. Beyond our fear of failure. Great things never come from comfort zones. We must have the courage to go outside of it – even if we don’t know what there is. We must learn to enjoy the free fall, take all that comes and embrace the hell out of every situation – even the so-called failures.

In the end, this is your own choice. It is all up to you. But I recommend: let yourself fall free. Allow yourself to fail. Once you allow yourself to fail, you also allow yourself to succeed.

Are you willing to take the jump?


Text written by Emmi Vilkanen, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer

The game we all live in

PHOTO SOURCE: PIXABAY.COM

Life is nothing but a game. You are the player in it.


We live a gamified world, where leveling up and experience (or XP, in gaming terms) are increasingly more important. We seek to grow and develop our skills as individuals as well as achieve certain ambitions or goals in the long run – whether this would be obtaining epic stuff or hitting the gym multiple times a week. We operate in a world, where gaming, ultimately, is an inherent part of everything we do.

In this world, belonging to a group, clan, or guild becomes important, even mandatory. These groups have an essential meaning to the individual, as they convey a sense of belonging and protect the player from dangerous things and people. Our team mates give us the core reason to continue playing, despite potential adversities. They make the raids to dungeons – that is, adventures to mythic places – worthwhile. They support the individual; they give the player guidance and a helping hand when one is needed.

As in gaming worlds, in real life too, there are diverse types of people seeking to establish fame and fortune. There are ordinary humans and odd orcs. To give a few, more specific, examples, we range from tough warriors and cunning rogues to altruistic priests and two-faced druids. Typical for these characters is also their capability for continual, stepwise self-development through the receipt of different types of rewards and prizes, or even medals. Herein, exploration and discovery for the purpose of obtaining items or assets prove central. Thus, professions may be pursued and skills may be improved in a gamified manner in both worlds.

Similarities between games and real world can be found in many other areas too. For instance, healing oneself every once in a while becomes a central part of the process. Herein, the consumption of various types of potions – that is, medicines – or even the reliance on revival (i.e., invigorating CPR) becomes necessary for adequate health and vitality. Secondly, it is possible to capitalize on the lure effect, for example, by using enticing fragrances (so-called 'incense'). Also, alluring 'modules' can be employed by giving out free food or stuff to people, among many other things. People are sure to flock. Finally, one needs to charge one's batteries every once in a while in order to keep playing. This means resting from all the running to power up or utilizing external means for energy.

Eventually, life is nothing but one big game, where you battle to improve yourself; your agility, stamina, spirit, strength, and intellect. You are the player of your life. It is an ever-lasting quest for honor, prestige, excitement, and marvel; an addictive and joyous world full of enticing opportunities and possibilities. Now, excuse me while I go and grind so that I can witness instances filled with happiness and enriching experiences. Some may call it serendipity, I call it 'lucky egg'. 

FTW, ppl, FTW!


Text written by Krista Palmu, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer

– a former lvl 70 mage in WoW & a current lvl 23 pokemon trainer in team Mystic –


Play to Learn

PHOTO SOURCE: PIXABAY.COM

I especially like the second part of our event theme: Learn to play, play to learn.


Play to learn is something I have started doing years ago already when I got interested in languages. I come from a place where languages are everything but sexy and learning them… well… everything but fun. Wild guess? I’m French. Fortunately enough not everyone from France is perfectly English-proof and some of us even speak German or Spanish…

Today, learning doesn’t have to be a punishment anymore. I do it every day, and I like to call it a hobby. I want to talk about digital: I like all things digital and how the world is changing around it, and I love how easy it is to learn playfully thanks to, say, a phone.

Do you know Duolingo? Duolingo is an app featuring a green owl (worth mentioning) and helping you learn languages. Millions of people around the globe use it to learn English and belong to the international community – others like me just want to get a taste of Norwegian, Hungarian or even Irish. As of today, no less than 62 courses are available (and counting).

 

Memrise is another great app to learn languages, but also… basically anything you’d like to learn, from flags to the US Presidents. You can also build your own course featuring your boyfriend’s favorite dishes if this is something you have some trouble remembering.

So what did technology change in the way we learn, in this case, languages? First of all, obviously, learning went mobile: you are not bound to a specific location anymore to improve your skills. But to me this is not the main part.

Learning was made fun.

Hello, short-term goals and rewards.

A good way to eradicate demotivation and boredom when learning is to stop make high achieving the only way to success. The real deal here is to be consistent and learn every day, not to be the best or the fastest.

Even if the learning process is in all points different between the two (theme-based in Memrise and following a learning tree in Duolingo), both have included a very effective gamification. In Memrise, you earn points every time you study – the points are merely useless, but first, they’re points, and second, you get a cool title every certain amount of points gathered. At the time being, I’m a “Memonist”.

In Duolingo, the way to go is to set a daily goal. For every lesson learned or reviewed you get a certain amount of points to reach it. The more regular you are, the longer your learning streak will be. How cool is it to see that you’ve been making progress every day for the past 546?

Creating your own courses, translating material or simply being active in the community are as many other ways to make your learning journey a walk in the park on a sunny day.

I have spent many hours (days ? weeks?) on these apps which is why I wanted to focus on them, but a couple more are worth mentioning as well like 94 degrees and QuizClash for general knowledge or Yousician to learn an instrument. Thousands of others are out there to fit the learning experience you are seeking: as far as I’m concerned I should get back to learning how to say “I am an apple” in Norwegian.

Let us know what your favorite learning apps are! I’d hate to miss out on something great.


Text written by Emilie Calmettes, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer


Team Building Event 2016

On Monday, August 8th we got together for an evening of getting to know each other, team building and planning the amazing TEDxOtaniemi 2016. The gathering took place at Mothership of Work premises in Helsinki.

During the meeting we came face to face with our volunteering fellows and thanks to the playfulness involved, we have built a great TEDxOtaniemi crew. Each team of volunteers could introduce themselves and share their awesome super powers. We had a lot of fun thanks to the core team, human potential team, event team, communication team, partnership team, speaker team & technical team.

All of us are very excited about upcoming August 19th!


Text written & photographs taken by Emilia Kwiatkowska-van Dijk, a TEDxOtaniemi volunteer