In an ever more connected society, both solitude and opportunities can arise in unexpected places. From healthcare to technology, from education to commerce, outside thinkers with novel insights have an unprecedented chance to change our view of the world and how the people within it live. At TEDxAIMS we explored stories of isolation and individualism and of how great ideas are reshaping the ways in which we interact with one another.


Alone in a Crowd

The event took place on Sunday, 22nd June, 2014 in Muizenberg, Cape Town

You can see the videos below, or click on the speakers’ profiles.

See the videos




Featured Work:
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Carolina Ödman-Govender studied physics engineering at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology...
Carolina Ödman-Govender studied physics engineering at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology before...
The power of Music made visible
Founder of The Singing Hearts Club, Laura is passionate about the healing, educational and transformative power of music. She draws from her experience as a teacher, singer, songwriter, and kinesiologist to write educational and inspirational children songs and support educators. Laura’s experience with traditional African music in townships schools inspired her to marry her ideas around music and songwriting with her interest in child development to create and facilitate youth empowerment projects.
‘What are you doing?’
Bio: Athenkosi Dyoli is an aspiring Nuclear Physicist at the University of Cape Town. Through hard work he thrived at Wynberg Boys’ and matriculating with an A aggregate. His mantra is “I’m proof that great things can happen to ordinary people if they work hard and never give up ” by Oral Hershiser, as he has had to work hard throughout his teenage years to free himself from the gripping claws of Poverty and make sure that he gets educated. Title: ‘What are you doing?’ Summary: ‘What are you doing?’ This is a question I will return to as I tell my story, which starts off the way so many stories have started in this country. I was born to a teenage mother in a remote village in the Eastern Cape and my early years were full of challenges including poverty, under-resourced schools and family tragedy. However through a strong support network, personal resolve and an unexpected life-changing opportunity, I stand before you, an aspiring first year Physics student at UCT on full scholarship with a unique opportunity like this one.
The extraordinary of the ordinary: Pediatric Tuberculosis in Cape Town
Bio: Kate Abney is a medical anthropologist, post-doctoral fellow and lecturer at the University of Cape Town. She has lived and worked in South Africa for over a decade. Title: The extraordinary of the ordinary: Pediatric Tuberculosis in Cape Town Summary: Cape Town, South Africa and the Western Cape Province more generally have very high rates of Tuberculosis (TB) and a large burden of TB in pediatric populations. Exploring the narratives of institutionalized child patients lends insight to the experiences of children living in a modern day sanatorium, being treated for an ancient disease which although curable, is far too common. Here, the 'extraordinary within the ordinary' gives one pause to re-consider the capabilities of children and the vulnerability inherent in the human experience.
Designs that give back
Bio: Marina Warren Nash is the founder and designer of The Agora Projects. She is a sought after, commissioned Architect and Sculptor. Her one-person exhibitions & museum installations have won numerous grand prize honors and awards across the United States and internationally from Europe to Japan. Her work has been published in many academic as well as public journals and newspapers. Her current work /architectural designs have recently won International acclaim through competitions. She holds the unique distinction of being the first (since 1908) female stone carver at the Washington National Cathedral. Title: Designs that give back Summary: Marina Warren Nash started The Agora Projects three years ago because of her commitment to designing creative solutions for some of today’s social and environmental challenges. She hopes to achieve this goal by reinventing the “Agora” into a contemporary community gathering place where people go to share resources, ideas and information. The Agora Projects is a Boulder-based, social entrepreneurial startup that has an innovative solution for “collaborative prosperity”.
Me, myself and I will remain: Why being odd is necessary
Bio: First born child to a mother of five in Uganda. After graduating at African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) and completing her master’s degree in Biomathematics at Stellenbosch University, she is currently pursuing her PhD at the same University in the field of mathematical modelling of ecological systems. Title: Me, myself and I will remain: Why being odd is necessary
1000 Drawings, Doodling for a Difference
Bio: Shani Judes is a connector, curator and public art facilitator living and working in Cape Town. Judes advocates for public art: she believes that art belongs in the streets of our city, as a medium for inclusion, creativity and social change. Judes founded SJ Artists, a local artist management agency, runs 1000 Drawings Cape Town, manages the Wavescape Surf Festival, co-founded Township Art Tours, sits on the Art Committee for AfrikaBurn and has recently been awarded the project management role of the City of Cape Town’s precedent setting city-community public arts project, ART54. Title: 1000 Drawings, Doodling for a Difference Summary: Shani Judes will be talking about a community based project called 1000 Drawings, where everybuddy is invited to create A5 artworks which will be exhibited on the 28th August, part of the largest group show of World Design Capital 2014. Money raised from the selling of these artworks will be used to uplift a school in Retreat, the Thomas Wildschutt School, 1000 Drawings will be supporting three local organisations to create the change in this school.
The kwaai Art of Standing Out
Bio: Multi-disciplinary media practitioner Siya Ngcobo transforms into his musical alter-ego Umlilo when he takes on the stage to perform. His signature sound dubbed ‘future kwaai’ explores and pushes the boundaries of local electronic music and has taken the music world by storm. Title: The kwaai Art of Standing Out Summary: Performance artist and electronic musician Umlilo explores the idea of uniqueness as catalyst for breaking boundaries in both local music and pop culture. Through a demonstration of how he produces his 'future kwaai' sound, he will look at the steps necessary in breaking through oversaturated online world.
One in Many: The Silent History of a Displaced Man
Bio: Wendy Goldman Rohm is a New York Times best-selling author, editor and literary agent working on her fifth book. She's written for The Atlantic, The New York Times Syndicate International, Wired magazine, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Vogue, Washington Post, and many others. She also gives talks and story workshops for writers around the world. She welcomes contact at: Wendy@RohmLiterary.com. Title: One in Many: The Silent History of a Displaced Man Summary: According to a recent U.N. report, there are now more displaced persons on the planet than in any time in recorded history--due to political upheaval, violence and war. I look at what happens to a man (or woman) when identity is shattered.

What is TEDx?

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our events are called TEDxAIMS, where x = independently organized TED event. At our TEDxAIMS event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.

TEDxAIMS by Code Corps