Our Favourite 5 TED Talks for Engineers

Our Favourite 5 TED Talks for Engineers
May 28, 2019 Prime Engineering

If you’re interested in engineering (like we are), it’s probably because you have a deep desire to understand how things work and how they’re made. TED talks are a great way to catch up on cutting edge technologies.

TED was launched in 1984 with the idea that spreading and sharing ideas centred around design, entertainment and technology could be done in a speaking summit style mode. A location is chosen, along with presenters who are experts in their chosen field, and each gives a short summary of what they believe to be the most pressing issue. Now Ted Talks have expanded into almost every category you can think of but at Prime Engineering, we live for the engineering goods, so here are our top 5 Ted Talks.

Our favourite 5 TED talks for engineers The Wonderful and Terrifying Implications of Computers that can Learn

1. The Wonderful and Terrifying Implications of Computers that can Learn

Speaker: Jeremy Howards

Summary: In this 20-minute talk, Howards gives a brief overview of how machines are able to learn and the method by which this is done. The quickest way to explain this is that it’s similar to how the software works on games such as chess or checkers. The software learns from its triumphs and mistakes while playing itself thousands of times over. Machine learning is far more advanced than the simple examples given here, but if you haven’t heard of machine learning and don’t understand just how powerful it is, this is where you should start. Think Skynet, but on steroids.

2. The Next Manufacturing Revolution is Here

Speaker: Olivier Scalabre

Summary: In this Ted Talk, Scalabre explains how the last three major industrial revolutions resulted in a monster surge in the economic sectors. He discusses how right now, we are currently on the verge of the 4th revolution, and how manufacturing trends (both past and current) play a role in where this revolution will take us. Scalabre highlights advanced robotics, additive manufacturing and big data as the biggest drivers of the revolution, which we’re on the cusp of. If you want to know where engineering is heading in the coming years, this talk is for you.

3. The Future we’re Building – and Boring

Speaker: Elon Musk

Summary: You might only know of Elon Musk from being the CEO and co-founder of Tesla, but the entrepreneur has his finger in a lot of pies. Stretching for nearly 4 times longer than the usual Ted Talk, this 40-minute gem is packed full of insight from the only man wild enough to send a car into space, just to make a point. The talk covers topics such as 3D network of tunnels, hyper loops, electric cars and how humans will eventually leave earth to set up colonies on other planets. Not only is Musk an incredibly inspiring individual, but he also understands how engineering is driving humanity forward.

4. The Astounding Athletic Power of Quadcopters

Speaker: Raffaello D’Andrea

Summary: Quadcopters push engineering abilities to the limits, and in this Ted Talk, D’Andrea explains how drones are going to revolutionise the future. These programmable machines are able to perform highly complex manoeuvres either in unison with other drones, or by themselves. Even though this Ted Talk is relatively old (2013), the facts are the same and stand the test of time. This Ted Talk shows what is possible when hardware and software work flawlessly together.

5. What a Driverless World Could Look Like

Speaker: Wanis Kabbaj

Summary: Everyone has been stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, wishing they either didn’t have to drive or could be completing other tasks while they wait. In this Ted Talk, Kabbaj explains how soon, traffic will be a thing of the past and transport modes are expanded. He discusses how autonomous driver cars and 3D network traffic tunnels in conjunction with modified traffic rules will allow traffic to flow more organically, thus reducing gridlock. Grab a seat and enjoy this one, because it’s closer than ever now with autonomous delivery vehicles already being tested in various countries.

Often Ted Talks can be an easy way to spend a few hours after you get led down the rabbit hole of knowledge, but Prime Engineering believes that these insightful talks are the cutting edge of topics that directly relate to our line of work. At Prime Engineering, we love innovation, ingenuity and anything related to machinery! If you’d like to know more about the services we provide, contact us on (07) 3217 0555 or use our online contact form.

Our favourite 5 TED talks for engineers - The Future we’re Building - and Boring