Members of the audience were in tears when they heard the struggles of G.J. Siddharth, recipient of the Helen Keller Award for 2009, on his attempts to conquer the challenges of cerebral palsy; they were in splits when they heard from corporate trainer T. Chendil Kumar's ways to infuse humour into business presentations; they were in rapt attention to ace guitarist R. Prasanna's solo; and were cheering at the efforts of S. Chinny Krishna and the Blue Cross towards the scientific birth control programme for street dogs in Chennai.
The second edition of TEDx Chennai, the independently organised TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) event, at IIT-Madras on Sunday was a rollercoaster ride. Speakers, achievers from diverse fields – from arts to business to animal welfare to wildlife photography – brought to fore the can-do spirit.
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, Lara Stein, the director for licensing at TED, said such independently organised conferences (suffixed with ‘x') managed to capture the spirit of TED conferences that have become synonymous with the tag line “ideas worth spreading.”
Rasmus Ankersen, peak performance coach and best-selling author, said TED conferences were very inspirational in various aspects. Other speakers at the event included wildlife photographer Shekhar Dattatri, organiser of TED India Lakshmi Pratury, Chennai Trekking Club founder Peter Van Geit and renowned dancer Ananda Shankar Jayant.
The entire event was streamed live on www.tedxchennai.com and was also live updated on Facebook.