I had a very memorable day, yesterday. I attended the TedX Youth conference organized at my office premise. I got a special invite. Ideally, I should be posting this in my company blog, but I had so much fun that I wanted to share it with the whole world. Here are some nice insights from the event.
Ted was founded 25 years back, yet it gained popularity in the last 5 years, mainly because of Chris Anderson who took over 5 years back. He decided to upload all the talks on the web and make it available for free. People were paying $6000 for attending the event, so this seemed a very counter intuitive move. Yet, it was THE factor which catapulted TED to world fame. Today, there is a 1 year waiting list for TED conferences.
The most interesting speech was by Aravind Kumar, the founder of Clean Credit. His mission is to make India as clean as Switzerland. He has come up with a unique model for making this happen. He piloted this in IIM campus with great success. He got his idea from trolley management process followed in some international airports. You pay a dollar to take the trolley and when you return it the dollar is refunded. His research showed that 90% of the trash is generated from the products of 25 companies. Get these companies to tag their products with a Clean Credit tag and charge 1Rs extra on all products. Upon returning the used packing material, refund the amount to the customer. When this was piloted in IIM, the trashiest place in the campus became clean in 4 days and they could achieve 100% segregation. Through this model we can make every corner shop a trash collection point.
Now, we only have to put pressure on these 25 companies to tag their products. His idea is to employ Gandhigiri 2.0. Take photographs of trash(which predominantly comprises of these companies’ products) and put them on social networking sites. Aravind Kumar is a PHD student in IIM. Many of his classmates are westerns who keep complaining to him about the filth in our cities. He promised them that he will make India as clean as Switzerland.
Here are some inspiration from other speakers.
Major Ravi, an ex-major in the Indian army and a film maker spoke of his journey from a 9th std dropout to a successful army major and a film maker. His message, “Always take on the most difficult tasks”
Elango, A scientist by profession, went back to his village, Kuthambakkam and transformed it into a model village by engaging the grassroots and employing e-governance. He says,”Youth should lead this country and hence opt for politics as a profession.” In a democracy people should be participants, not just beneficiaries.
Dr.Madhan Marky, a professor in Anna University wanted to be a lyricist. He fulfilled his dream by using software engineering to generate the best possible lyrics for a given tune. He was able to program, such components as uniqueness and pleasantness of the lyrics into his application. The first song that was created using this software was Irumbu Manida from Eindhiran.
I had a thoroughly enjoyable day. A special thanks to Mani and Rajashree for inviting me.
For details on all the speakers at the event refer to http://www.tedxyouthchennai.com