Try something new 1

I have something new for you to try.

There is an organisation called TED, which stands for “Technology, Entertainment and Design”. You can find its website here. TED is interested in ideas – Ideas Worth Spreading. It organises a couple of conferences every year, but – much more important – it makes videos of most of the talks and presentations at its conferences, and puts them on the internet for everyone to see, or to download if they wish. The talks are no more than 20 minutes long, and many of them are much shorter. They cover all sorts of topics, from science to society; some are serious, some are funny; all of them are interesting. The page for finding these talks is here.

Now, here is the bit that makes these talks really useful for English learners. Most of the talks have subtitles in English, and many have subtitles in other languages too. There is a box below each video where you can select the subtitles. And on the right hand side of the webpage (on the TED site), most of the talks have a transcript as well as notes about the speaker, and a summary of the talk. So you can follow the talk in English, or in your own language, as you wish. You can even click on the transcript to restart the video from any point, so you can play a section several times if you find it difficult to understand.

I have chosen one short talk to give you an idea of what TED can offer. It is by Matt Cutts, and in three and a half minutes he tells us how to Try Something New for 30 Days. Have fun!

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