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TEDx Time In Buffalo

October 13, 2014

Our own Ken joins the team for TEDx


Adrienne Bermingham is the manager of this year’s TEDx Buffalo event, which will be held this Tuesday at the Montante Center of Canisius College in downtown Buffalo.

Today I wish to proudly announce that our own Ken Regan is one of the presenters at this year’s event.

Bermingham is the head organizer of the TEDxBuffalo events, which started in 2011. This year’s theme is In Motion. When not organizing she works in Anthrozoology, which is the study of how we, humans, interact with animals. As one who daily interacts with our golden retriever, I would love to hear any advice on how to make that better.

What Is TEDx Anyway?

The TED organization is dedicated to getting information out to the world: ideas worth spreading. TEDxBuffalo is an example of a local group working with them to put on an TED event. Their event, TEDxBuffalo 2014, is suppose to be relevant to Buffalo, by Buffalonians. It has no keynotes, panels, or any of the usual stuff we see at conferences. No parallel sessions. Just a day of “engaging and refreshing your brain.” Of course as a non-Buffalonain I would expect that the talks, while focused locally, will still be interesting to the rest of us. Its a twist on the famous phrase “think globally, act locally.”

Quoting them:

Applying a theme to our TEDx event allows us to highlight a strength we’ve identified in our community, curate a series of talks that have the ability to build off of one another, and send a clear, powerful message to members of our community and TEDx video viewers across the globe.

This year’s theme builds upon TEDxBuffalo 2013, which celebrated our city’s “Renaissance Citizens”. Now that we’ve acknowledged our city’s renaissance, it’s time to recognize those who are hard at work bringing about positive change in our community—those who are truly “In Motion”.

Tuesday October 14, 2014

The day starts at 9am and goes to 4pm. It consists of a dozen talks. Go here for the exact time schedule and also more information on the talks.


A little secret: Ken cropped me out of the photo he used. It was taken at a Barnes and Noble in Ann Arbor when we attended the Michigan “Coding, Complexity, and Sparsity” workshop. Oh well.

The talks are described by bios of the speakers. I must say that Ken’s talk I get completely: it will be on his research into chess. The others are less clear—I guess that is part of the fun of a TEDx event. The talks are special, surprising, and should all be fun. Here are very short descriptions of the talks. Very short.

  • Urban planning
  • How learning multiple languages can help you survive the zombie apocalypse
  • Soccer
  • Cooperative movement of Buffalo across sectors
  • Bringing the art of Indian dance to the Western New York community
  • Visual, audio, blurring the lines between them to make art
  • Chess
  • Parenting in the age of iPads and smartphones
  • Dancing
  • Creating a culture of health in the community
  • Animal behavior consulting
  • Art, art, and more art

Maybe I don’t get Ken’s talk. His title is, “Getting to Know Our Digital Assistants.” I thought Ken was involved in making sure people don’t use digital assistants. I guess the only way to know is to watch.

How To Watch Live

The TEDx program with be broadcast on this Tuesday. General information is found here and go here for the live feed. Ken is talking in the middle of the 10:40am–noon session, perhaps shortly after 11:10am. As usual if you miss the live broadcast the talks will be still available on-line.

Open Problems

If you live nearby you may still be able to get there in person. For the rest of us I look forward to see Ken and the others in motion.

Update 10/16/14: Upon being reminded by John Sidles’ comment that YouTube and other video URLs have fields for jumping to a given time or frame, I (Ken) indexed all the talks and other segments of the day, and the direct links are now posted on the livestream page. Further update: The final edited and polished version of Ken’s talk is here.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. rjlipton permalink*
    October 14, 2014 10:56 am

    Ken just gave great talk

    Starts with a song, has a jingle in the middle, and contains some cool insights


  2. Michael Wehar permalink
    October 14, 2014 11:23 am

    I watched it online. Great job, it was very cool!

  3. October 15, 2014 5:29 am

    YouTube is now hosting Ken Regan’s talk (beginning at 2:43:40). Please let me say that I am a huge fan of Ken Regan’s chess research, which is important mathematically and socially (in the chess community).

    Perhaps someday there will be a Godel’s Lost Letter essay on the relative proportion of algorithm-improvement versus hardware-improvement, in computer chess for the past few decades?

    Pretty much any chess-related remarks that Ken may care to offer would be of interest to many folks (including me).

    • October 15, 2014 10:09 am

      Oh heck… here’s (hopefully) a working direct-link to Ken Regan’s TEDxBuffalo 2014 talk Getting to know our digital assistants Thank you again for this fine talk, Ken Regan.

      • October 15, 2014 5:35 pm

        Thanks, John—it works perfectly, and reminding me of that ability in URLs will spur me to do so for the others.


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