Cool WWII photos

This is absolutely true! Translation is a messy business.

TED Blog

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What’s funny in one language isn’t necessarily funny in another. Maysoon Zayid’s “I got 99 problems … palsy is just one” presented many challenges for TED translators bringing the hilarious talk into their language. As she tells stories from her life as a Palestinian-American comedian with cerebral palsy, Zayid cracks with wordplay. For translators, it’s one thing to convey meaning, but how do you let non-English speaking audiences in on the joke? “If you have to explain the joke, it’s no longer funny,” says Greek translator Dimitra Papageorgiou. But if you do a good job, says Meric Aydonat, who translated the talk into Turkish, “it looks so natural that your translation becomes funny in itself.”

Valérie Boor subtitled the talk in Dutch. “It’s always difficult to make a translation funny, since the spoken word has factors like timing and intonation that contribute to the joke,” she…

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Customers and Content

Two big things happened to me last week. I attended a technical communications conference and it was a worthwhile experience. I picked up a lot of good information, and I tried to apply the tips that people gave me in comments to my I don’t get conferences post.

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Very well animated, and informative.

TED Blog

If you haven’t seen the TED-Ed Lesson “A rare, spectacular total eclipse of the sun,” you should really check it out. Not only will you learn a good deal about the science behind these extraordinary events, you’ll also get to soak in some beautiful and detailed artistry from animator Bevan Lynch. We caught up with Lynch for a quick, behind-the-scenes look at what it was like to create an entire universe from scratch, with a few Earth-shattering pitfalls along the way.

How do you come up with the ideas for your animations?

Pre-production for me is often the most fun and also the most challenging part of the animation process. There are so many fun choices to make, but knowing which are the right ones can be tough.

Visual ideas come to me in many different ways. Sometimes I’ll read a script and know exactly how I want to…

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Choose your own adventure books taken to the next level! Wait, does anyone even remember those?!

The social media networks are evolving astounds me.

Crowdsourcing astronomy what will they think next!

TED Blog

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Scientific research is generating far more data than the average researcher can get through. Meanwhile, modern computing has yet to catch up with the superior discernment of the human eye. The solution? Enlist the help of citizen scientists. British astronomer and web developer Robert Simpson is part of the online platform Zooniverse, which lets more than one million volunteers from around the world lend a hand to a variety of projects — everything from mapping the Milky Way to hunting for exoplanets to counting elephants to identifying cancer cells — accelerating important research and making their own incredible discoveries along the way.

At TED2014, Simpson took us through a few of Zooniverse’s 20-plus projects (with more on the way), some of which have led to startling discoveries — including a planet with four suns. Below, an edited transcript of our conversation.

Are you a scientist?

Well, I’m a distracted astronomer. Yes, I’m an astronomer at University of Oxford. But I’m there…

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Okay? What good would that do?!

He’s got a point. And its interesting he decides to use Star Trek to make it.

More gems?