How a failed attempt to 3D print a cake led to beautiful sugar sculptures you can eat … or drop into your coffee

In grad school, designers Liz and Kyle von Hasseln wanted to bake their friend a cake. The only problem? They didn’t own an oven. They did, however, have a 3D printer.

In a talk at TEDxManhattanBeach, the duo explains how this problem led to a breakthrough: they couldn’t print a cake, but they could print a cake topper.

Now, Liz and Kyle now spend their days designing and (3D) printing edible sugar sculptures — from corkscrews for your coffee to latticework for your cocktail.

Watch the whole talk to find out more about how these super sweet designs are made»

(Photos: the sugar lab)

Ideas worth spreading & mugs worth filling: We can’t get enough of this video of TEDxJeddah's super cool event swag — a seemingly regular coffee mug that transforms when filled with hot liquid, a.k.a. the TEDx version of Clark Kent in a phone booth.

Fitting in with the event’s theme,  iجدة_الحلم #عندي_فكرة — or in English — “The idea; the dream,” the mug visualizes ideas being put into the world, showing that a good idea, dream, or brainstorm has great potential to create change (with style). Check it out!

TEDxJeddah is just one of the many TEDx events sending good ideas out into the universe. To learn more about TEDx events (and find one near you to attend) visit our website.

Coffee. Hacking. Indonesia: 5 TEDx Talks on Java

imageWhen you hear “java,” you might think of the pesky window that pops up on your computer desktop every few months, begging you to close all browser windows so you can install vital security updates — or maybe your morning coffee, expertly brewed by your favorite neighborhood barista — or, an image even more lovely, the lush greens of Indonesia’s third largest island.

Whatever it is you’re thinking of — we’ve got a talk for you. So pour your cup of joe, save all tabs, and take a break from your vacation planning to watch these 5 TEDx talks in honor of the word java:

All your devices can be hacked: Avi Rubin at TEDxMidAtlantic
Lately reports have been popping up all over on a vulnerability in Sun Microsystem’s Java plug-in, which has prompted what PC Mag has called a “Java-based hacking spree.” Recent attacks have affected companies such as Facebok, Twitter and, now, Apple, prompting concern over who will be next and how these attacks will be stopped. Computer scientist Avi Rubin is no stranger to hacks, and at TEDxMidAtlantic, he explains how hackers are compromising cars, smartphones and medical devices, and warns us about the dangers of an increasingly hack-able world.

Hacking the city with fun: Irwan Ahmett at TEDxJakarta
Sometimes the smallest things make your day so much better. A funny road sign. Clever graffiti. Free cookies.
Part-way through his career, artist Irwan Ahmett realized this and decided to run with it. Using spinning umbrellas, a human monorail, fruit baskets, and a secret lumberyard Internet cafe, he hacked his city, Java’s largest, with random acts of playfulness. At TEDxJakarta, he explains the story behind the hacks.

The human cost of food: Rebecca Scott at TEDxCanberra
Rebecca Scott
wants you to know what goes into your morning coffee — and that’s not just how much cream or sugar you like. She says that when we buy a cup a coffee, we should think about more than just taste; but consider the treatment of the people behind the bean — the farmers, harvesters, packagers, and coffee shop employees involved in providing our caffeine fix. In this talk, she reveals some of the astounding stories behind the things we consume, and introduces her project, STREAT, an effort to create cafes and coffee shops staffed by homeless youth serving ethically-sourced food and drink.

Read More