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TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking Audible – Unabridged

4.6 out of 5 stars 151 customer reviews

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By JamesMcRitchie VINE VOICE on March 23, 2016
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
TED Talks reminds me a little of a book I read decades ago… Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess. As I read that book I kept thinking, yes, interesting idea – and another. When I finished, I thought ok good pointers but will it make any difference? Then I played someone who I had never won against in dozens of opportunities and I beat them.

Bobby Fischer’s book was one of the first popular books I read that used programmed learning… stepping the reader through a series of painless exercises. I’ve also seen that technique also used in a book that teaches math by setting up the problems faced by Euclid, etc. and giving readers enough clues so they too can reach their own aha moments.

While TED Talks doesn’t use programmed learning, it is very painless reading, packed with lots of good ideas. You may not come away and be able to deliver a TED Talk right away but you will come away with at least several new ideas on how to improve your ability to get your message across in group settings.

Anyone who has seen several TED Talks knows there is no one way to deliver the talks but the book has plenty to say about what generally doesn’t work and what does. I’ll just hit on a few that struck me as helpful:

• Don’t give a sales pitch. The speaker’s job is to give to the audience, not to take.
• Sometimes it takes a little demolition before changing minds. Example: In ancient societies, a third of men died violent deaths. Modern media plays up violence because that’s what sells.We've changed. After crushing their stereotypes, now you can go onto your points.
• Take your audience down your own path of discovery. By asking them to join the process, they get more involved.
• Make sure your words and images work together.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"TED Talks" by Chris Anderson is a helpful title for anyone wanting to become a more effective public speaker. The book is around 250 pages and covers such topics as:

1. Getting appropriately personal in your talk.
2. Simplifying difficult to explain concepts.
3. Suggestions for using slides.
4. Pointers on preparing for the presentation.
5. Making an impression.
6. What to wear during your presentation.
7. Using/not using notes while presenting.
8. Suggestions for calming your nerves during the presentation.

Throughout the book Anderson effectively uses the experiences of several people to make his point. The narrative is very readable and smoothly transitions from chapter to chapter. Will be an often used future reference.
2 Comments 38 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I’m always interested in improving my public speaking skills and I’ve heard a lot about TED, so I was curious about this book. The book is split up into the following sections: “Foundation,” “Talk tools,” “Preparation process,” “On stage,” and “Reflection.” Some of the advice discussed included reducing the range of topics to a single connected thread that can be properly developed, using metaphors, the different talk tools (connection, narration, explanation, persuasion, revelation), ways to start strong (delivering a dose of drama, igniting curiosity, showing a compelling slide, video, or object, teasing without giving it away), ways to end with power (call to action, personal commitment, linking back to the opening, etc.) and much more. Also discussed was the physical set up of the talk (memorization versus notecards versus slides versus teleprompter, etc.), wardrobe, props, the different formats of presenting a speech, etc. My only suggestion is not a content-related issue, but a format-related issue: some of the chapters were made up of big chunks of text which could have been broken down some more to avoid losing the main ideas. However, the occasional appearance of bullet points and separate headings within the chapters help resolve this issue. Overall, a helpful and informative resource for public speaking.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I love TED Talks. I love how they inspire, educate, or entertain, usually in under ten minutes. Most of the TED Talks I've seen (on the TED website or on YouTube) have taught me something new or made me think of something in a way that I haven't before. This book isn't the only one that will teach you how to give a speech like a TED Talk expert, but it is the official TED guide to public speaking by the curator of TED.

I prefer How to Deliver a TED Talk: Secrets of the World's Most Inspiring Presentations, because--like a good TED Talk--it teaches a lot and inspires in an amazingly brief amount of time. It also focuses on the positive, while this official guide spends a lot of time talking about how nervous TED presenters often are. I understand that might help some readers, but.. How to Deliver a TED Talk helped me much more when it comes to dealing with nerves. This book just made me more nervous.

This official guide is very detailed, serious, and includes lots of examples and lots of repetition. I started reading it straight through, but it didn't hold my attention. After that, I started skimming. First I read just the start and end of each paragraph. Then I read just the start and end of each chapter and each subsections. You really can get the gist of most of the book this way. I know the depth, examples, and repetition will be better for some people, but I learn better with something short and entertaining. You know, like an actual TED Talk.

Here's a breakdown of the first 70 pages to demonstrate what I mean:

Prologue: The New Age of Fire--"TED's mission is to nurture the spread of powerful ideas.
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