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TED TALKS: Science And Wonder

Airs Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at 10 p.m. on KPBS TV

Latif Nasser of “Radiolab” is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS

Credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Above: Latif Nasser of “Radiolab” is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS "Science And Wonder."

TED TALKS "Science And Wonder,” the first of three new TED TALKS specials planned for 2016, premieres Wednesday, March 30, 2016 on PBS. Filmed at New York's The Town Hall theater and hosted by best-selling author and comedian Baratunde Thurston, "Science And Wonder” features talks delivered before a live audience. Each talk examines the riddles of the universe that keep leading scientists awake at night, taking viewers on a mind-blowing journey examining the relationship between science and art, a look deep inside the human body, disappearing landscapes, and the world of Pixar animation as speakers look at the future of nanotechnology, the science of light, and the rise of genetic manipulation.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Danielle Feinberg of Pixar is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS “Science And Wonder,” which was filmed at The Town Hall, New York, N.Y.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Juan Enriquez, one of the world’s leading authorities on the uses and benefits of genomic code, is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS “Science And Wonder.”

Photo credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Paula Hammond, the Head of MIT’s Department of Chemical Engineering, is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS “Science And Wonder.”

Photo credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Artist Zaria Forman is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS “Science And Wonder.”

Photo credit: Courtesy of Ryan Lash/TED

Latif Nasser of “Radiolab” is one of the featured speakers in TED TALKS "Science And Wonder."

Featured speakers include:

Danielle Feinberg, Pixar’s director of photography, who explains how she builds a 3D world inside a computer, using math, science and code to create stories with soul and wonder;

Juan Enriquez, leading authority in genomic code and “Evolving Ourselves” author, who delves into the complex ethical questions raised by the rise of intelligent design;

Paula Hammond, MIT's Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering, who reveals new technologies being developed to kill cancer cells;

• Artist Zaria Forman, who uses her work to bring attention to the imminent perils of climate change; and

Radiolab's Latif Nasser takes us on an investigative journey high above the Arctic Circle to solve the mystery of a tiny fragment of bone from thousands of years ago.

This special also includes three original short films produced by ITVS: “Bridge to the Future,” by Denise Zmekhol and Max Salomon, about designer Joris Laarman, who plans to use a robot to build a 3D bridge; “Our Place in Space,” by David Alvarado and Jason Sussberg, about the future of space exploration, featuring Bill Nye; and “The Rapture,” by Ric Burns, featuring the late Oliver Sacks. A co-production of TED and the Independent Television Service (ITVS) and is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

“Our mission at TED is to spread ideas,” said Juliet Blake, producer of TED TALKS LIVE and TED's Curator of Special Projects. “This series brings PBS viewers an eye-opening evening of television brimming with powerful thinking, humanity and passion.”

“The public media and TED Talks collaboration further enhances efforts to support innovative ideas and to encourage deeper dialogue among diverse communities and platforms,” said Pat Harrison, President and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. “This partnership builds on the CPB-supported TED Talks Education, which premiered as an American Graduate special in 2013.”

“High-quality, enriching programming is the hallmark of our work at PBS,” said Marie Nelson, Vice President News & Public Affairs at PBS. “TED TALKS 'Science And Wonder’ is a wonderful example of the type of smart and compelling content viewers can find only on PBS.”

“This partnership provides a fantastic opportunity to connect the work of brilliant independent filmmakers with the talents of TED speakers, bringing audiences a rich experience on many levels,” says Tamara Gould, Senior Vice President of National Productions at ITVS.

Two additional TED Talks specials, “War And Peace” and “Education Revolution” will premiere later this year on PBS.

“TED Talks: Science And Wonder” is curated by Chris Anderson and Juliet Blake. The executive producer is Juliet Blake and Allen Kelman is the producer. TED content director is Kelly Stoetzel. Executive producers for ITVS are Tamara Gould and Sally Jo Fifer. Directed by Linda Mendoza.

TED is on Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and you can follow @TEDTalks on Twitter.

Danielle Feinberg: The Science of Light

In this excerpt from the PBS special TED Talks: Science and Wonder, Pixar's Director of Photography and Lighting Danielle Feinberg looks at the science and physics of light as seen in the wonderful, award-winning animated feature films of Pixar. Here she focuses on a scene from Finding Nemo to exemplify the ways her team created natural light under water.

Juan Enriquez: Natural vs Unnatural Selection

In this excerpt from the PBS special TED Talks: Science and Wonder, Juan Enriquez, leading authority in genomic code and author of Evolving Ourselves, explains the difference between natural and unnatural selection with an assist from man’s best friend.

Latif Nasser: Discovery in the Arctic

In this excerpt from the PBS special TED Talks: Science and Wonder, Radiolab's Latif Nasser takes us across the frozen Arctic with a paleobiologist who makes a rather remarkable discovery. Finding 3.5 million year old bones preserved in the ice, the scientist uses a new process called "collagen fingerprinting" to determine the ancient find was a long way from its current home.

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