Beautiful, bizarre images of Earth taken by the European Space Agency’s fleet of Earth-observing satellites.

These pictures are more than just cool: In a talk at TEDxBarcelona, Stephen Briggs — head of Earth Observation science at the ESA’s European Space Research Institute — tells the fascinating tale behind the satellite and explains how these uncommon images of Earth are more valuable than you think.

Watch the whole talk here»

1. Aragon and Catalonia, Spain
2. The Okavango River Delta, Botswana
3. Sand dunes, Namibia
4. The Great Salt Desert, Iran
5. Palouse Region, United States
6. Rural Kansas, United States

(Images via ESA)

Who has the power to end poverty?

Poverty isn’t one simple, easy-to-identify problem. It’s a catch-all term for droves of problems that stem from many sources. It’s daunting to think about solving such a sprawling issue, but there’s power in that too. Change needs to happen at so many levels that everyone from local communities to big governments can make a tangible difference.

Below, TEDx Talks with creative ideas about how to make a dent in poverty at three different levels — local, national, and global:

**Become the leaders of your own community: Boniface Mwangi at TEDxKibera
Boniface Mwangi calls on his community to demand representation and take charge of it’s own future. Kibera, the urban slum around Nairobi, is the largest in Africa. Despite the creativity of local innovators and entrepreneurs, infrastructure remains unsound and human rights abuses are widespread. At TEDxKibera, Boniface calls on his neighbors to demand justice and take action before outside sources forge their future for them.

**For money, insert human rights: Susan Randolph at TEDxUConn
What’s more important for a government hoping to improve the lives of its citizens: growing its economy or strengthening its social safety net? According to Susan Randolph, one might not work without the other. She measures a country’s human rights achievements, relative to its GDP per capita. She’s found that a country’s economic growth is unstable when it’s not coupled with policies that secure citizens access to the food, health, education, housing, work, and social security that’s within the country’s means. Reducing poverty is hardly just about money; it’s about guaranteeing citizens reasonable levels of dignity and stability, too.

**In defense of foreign aid: Joe Cerrell at TEDxASL
Wealthy countries like the US and UK have impressive aid programs, but many of their citizens view these as a colossal waste of money that ought to be spent solving the problems at home. What that argument usually misses, however, is that foreign aid makes up a near infinitesimal portion of most national budgets and that even those modest investments make a tremendous impact. Concerns about implementation notwithstanding, Cerrell makes the case that the spending is well worth the cost.

Welcome to the first TEDx playlist in Arabic: 4 talks in Arabic

مرحبا بكم في أول قائمة تشغيل لمحادثات TEDx باللغة العربية.

We are very pleased to publish our first playlist in Arabic! This is only the beginning, we have other exciting Arabic language plans in development, including the launch of in Arabic later this month!

يسرّنا نشر أول قائمة تشغيل باللغة العربية! نرجو أن تستمتعوا بهذه الباقة المختارة من المحادثات من أرجاء العالم العربي. هذه مجرد البداية، لدينا خطط أخرى تهم اللغة العربية في طور التطوير، بما في ذلك إطلاق موقع باللغة العربية في سبتمبر المقبل!

But in the meantime, enjoy our selection of talks from the Arab world, spanning topics from how to deal with sexism in Tahrir Square to pondering ways to tackle important mathematical and philosophical questions in academia.

Presenting on TV against all odds: Ali Taleb Almarrany at TEDxSanaa 2012
Growing up in Yemen under extreme poverty, Ali Taleb Almarrany lost an eye in a tragic firearm accident in the ninth grade. At TEDxSanaa, he tells the story of how this tragedy led him to his biggest success: becoming a TV journalist, despite the odds. Clocking in at more than 1,000,000 views and still going strong, this talk is not to be missed. (Filmed in Arabic with subtitles in English.)

لدى نشأته في اليوم في ظروف الفقر المدقع، فقد علي طالب المراني عينا في حادث سلاح ناري مأساوي حين كان في المرحلة التاسعة. وفي هذه المحادثة من TEDxSanaa يخبرنا كيف أن هذه المأساة قادته إلى أعظم نجاح: أن يصير صحافي تلفزيونيا، على الرغم من كل الصعوبات. حظت هذه المحادثة التي لا ينبغي تفويتها بأكثر من 1,000,000 مشاهدة، والعدد في تزايد. (تم التصوير باللغة العربية بترجمة نصية إنجليزية).

The invisible patriarchy in public space: Sarrah Abdelrahman at TEDxKafrElsheikh
At TEDxKafrElsheikh, Sarrah Abdelrahman describes how she decided to stand up to the police officer who harassed her in Tahrir Square and how she created a video that encourages other women to speak up against sexism in public spaces in Egypt.

تصف ساره عبد الرحمن في TEDxKafrElsheikh كيف قررت أن تقبل في وجه ضابط الشرطة الذي تحرّش بها في ميدان التحرير وكيف قامت بإنشاء فيديو يشجع النساء الأخريات على رفع أصواتهم في مواجهة التمييز الجنسي في الفضاءات العامة في مصر.

Peace journalism: Vanessa Bassil at TEDxLAU
In this rousing talk at TEDxLAU, Vanessa Bassil discusses the importance of transparency in journalism and encourages journalists to practice honest journalism in the field. (Filmed in Arabic with subtitles in English.)

تناقش فانيسا باسيل في هذه المحادثة المثيرة من TEDxLAU، أهمية الشفافية في الصحافة وتشجع الصحفيين على ممارسة الصحافة الشريفة في الميدان. (تم التصوير باللغة العربية بترجمة نصية إنجليزية).

الفاعلية: Elsheikh Mohamed Elsheikh at TEDxKhartoum
At TEDxKhartoum, well-known academic Elsheikh Mohamed Elsheikh discusses how sometimes really big questions can only be answered by looking through an interdisciplinary prism. (Filmed in Arabic with subtitles in Arabic.)

اديمي المعروف الشيخ محمد الشيخ، في TEDxKhartoum، كيف أنه أحيانا من الممكن الإجابة عن الأسئلة الكبيرة حقا، فقط من خلال النظر عبر موشور متعدد التخصصات. (تم التصوير باللغة العربية بترجمة نصية إنجليزية).

Translation by Khalid Marbou.

On a rooftop in Rwanda, TEDxNyarugenge celebrates new ideas: On a Friday night this August, a diverse group of thinkers, innovators, activists, and artists gathered on a rooftop in Kigali, Rwanda for a night of TED Talks, live speakers, and new ideas.

Attendees shared their life goals, wishes, and hopes, and the things in life that make them feel brave on moveable chalkboards, while local alternative energy provider, Great Lakes Energy, lit up the night with hundreds of tiny solar powered lamps.