4 talks on how the world could end today (but probably won’t)

Well, it’s December 21st, 2012 in EST time zones and, if you’re reading this, the world has not ended.

Or, maybe it has and you found the Wi-Fi password to the afterlife.

Either way, you now have plenty of time on your hands. Spend some it watching these four doomsday talks — some humorous, some horrifying:

6 reasons why you want to believe doomsday is coming: Tommy Calloway

Doomsday prophecies have a terrible track record. So why does anyone believe in them? Comedian Tommy Calloway has six answers.

The end is nigh: John Hodgman at TEDxMidwest

In this unusual talk, “deranged millionaire” John Hodgeman shares his plan for the coming apocalypse and implores you to adopt his survival strategies, including stockpiling mayonnaise and moving into a houseboat that can float on rivers of blood.

9 biggest weather disasters in the next 30 Years: Jeff Masters at TEDxBermuda

In a talk given earlier this year, meteorologist Jeff Masters presented the nine most devastating natural disasters likely to happen in the United States in the next thirty years. Number six happened in October. 

How to defend Earth from asteroids: Phil Plait at TEDxBoulder

65 million years ago, an asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs. Can we save ourselves from the same fate? Astronomer Phil Plait discusses the science of asteroids and what we can do to prevent a catastrophic impact.

TEDx playlist: 5 talks on weather extremes and how we recover after

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, it is hard not to think about the astounding and devastating power of nature. In these five talks, extreme weather experts and disaster relief specialists tell us how to predict, deal with, and recover from the world’s extreme weather events.

9 biggest weather disasters in the next 30 years: Jeff Masters at TEDxBermuda

In a talk given earlier this year, meteorologist Jeff Masters presented the nine most devastating natural disasters likely to happen in the United States in the next thirty years. Number six just happened. 

Imagine the worst: Don Whittemore at TEDxBoulder

Firefighter Don Whittemore asks you to prepare for the worst even when the idea seems too troubling to bear. In this talk, he explains how you can develop a mindset for disaster preparedness without becoming a pessimist.

Shifting aid from analog to digital: Paul Conneally at TEDxRC2 

Driven by Twitter, text messages, and global social networks, the response to the tragic earthquake in Haiti in 2010 was dominated by a new type of recovery effort. Paul Conneally sheds light on how mobile devices and social media have already changed relief efforts and how we can better utilize them going forward.

Disaster relief that can save veterans: Jake Wood at TEDxSanDiego

Jake Wood is director of Team Rubicon, an organization that mobilizes US veterans into disaster-stricken areas. He explains why veterans are expertly suited to the task and precisely how this undertaking not only provides veterans with valuable and challenging work, but also allows them to reintegrate into civilian communities.

How to step up in the face of disaster: Caitria and Morgan O’Neill at TEDxBoston

In a talk featured earlier this year on TED.com, sisters Caitria and Morgan O’Neill break down the steps to prepare your community for potential weather disasters.

Tuesday TEDx Talks Playlist

Hundreds of talks from independently organized TEDx events around the world are published on the TEDxTalks website daily.

Each Tuesday and Thursday, we’ll choose four of our favorites, highlighting just a few of the enlightening talks from TEDx community, and its diverse constellation of ideas worth spreading. Browse all TEDxTalks here »

Charlie Todd gives a hilarious talk on his work with Improv Everywhere and the magic of the shared — and unexpected — experience.

At TEDxBermuda, Professor Daniel Lieberman shows how long distance running was the first step to becoming human.

Elisabeth Stock discusses the potential for digital learning to help close the achievement gap for low-income students.

Thomas Auer explains his work as a “climate engineer” — cleverly designing buildings to be both carbon neutral and beautiful.