Interesthink @ The POD National Library

Having already attended various talks such as the Nexus 2007 as well as the E27 Unconference, and finding it interesting, I was most keen in participating in the Interesthink event.

It was promoted as a local version of TED which I am enamoured with as TED conferences revolves about ‘Ideas worth spreading’. One such presentation that left me floored was the one done by Marjora Carter, where she talks about how to create a sustainable environment.

I arrived at the National Library early Saturday morning and went up to the elevator into the POD where the most spectacular view of the city can be seen. From the glass panels, you could see various landmarks like the Shaw Towers, Suntec City and the Esplanade.

I met a couple of blogger friends who were already there – Farinelli, NTT and joined by DK, Claudia, Preetam as well as several other attendees.

In due time, the event was declared opened by  the organizers and the speakers stepped up to the podium.

The first person to do his presentation was Dr. Larry Francis who presented about ‘Malay culture, musical practices and Islam of the Malay world’. He asked the audience why it was that music seemed to be discouraged in Islam currently when there were so many musical instruments in the Islamic Golden age.

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Next was Mr Grant Pereira – an enigmatic man who was extremely passionate in environmentalism. He talked about his work in Greenpeace and how there were many things that were happening in Singapore that was hurtful for the environment. One of them being the issue of land space for housing and yet there were many golf courses being built.

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The next speaker was Mr Alex Au who spoke about the pros and cons of prostitution. His was a rather strange presentation, with him walking here and there. Personally for me, the topic was not something new. And I found out that there are a number of the audience were still not comfortable about the issue of prostitution.

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Next up was Ms Lim Choo Hin who is a cancer survivor. She talked about the issues that she faced while having cancer and candidly showed some pictures with patients who lost one or both sides of their breasts to cancer and finally she closed by saying, “If you feel defeated, life is over”

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And one of the final speakers was Mr Kan Lume, an acclaimed filmmaker. At the first glance, it was interesting for me to notice his right hand. It had the words ‘Film Maker’ in black ink and I realised later that it was actually a tattoo. It was to remind and motivate himself in the path that he has chosen. He narrated a story about his childhood and how it inspired him to become what he is today.

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All in all, I thought that the event was a good way to spend a Saturday, getting to listen to a number of fascinating speakers, surrounded by friends in a beautiful location. Here is a quick video snippets of the event :

Amazingly, at the end of the event, I felt mentally drained out trying to absorb all of the information that I heard today. There were many other people who felt the same way too! It was kind of like the same feeling doing maths sum for an hour straight 😛

In the end, the Interesthink event isn’t exactly like TED, but it was still a pretty good start. I enjoy talks such as these and the interesting side to it is that, for some reason, it reminded me so much of a Secondlife event – meeting other avatars, listening to the speaker, in a nice environment.


Sidenote : Come and join me this saturday for the Social Media Breakfast as well as the Web 2.0 – Emerging Industry Series. Both of them are held at the same time though. Can I clone myself into two?

Links :

And huge credits to the wonderful NTT for recording the audio of the event 🙂

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