TED’s Revered Founder Now Finds the Conference ‘Appalling’

TIME

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This is one of a 10-article series of conversations with transformational leaders who will be storytellers at the BIF10 Collaborative Innovation Summit in Providence, RI, on Sept. 17-18.

In Newport, RI, lives an old magician in splendid, self-imposed exile.

Richard Saul Wurman, best known as the founder of the TED conference, has made it his job to produce clarity out of the complex.

His eclectic body of work boasts over 80 books, including the original Access city guides, the bestsellers Information Anxiety and Information Anxiety II, as well as esteemed companions on all topics from football, to estate-planning, to healthcare. He has founded 40-odd conferences and chaired numerous information-mapping projects.

In conversation, Wurman speaks with unapologetic honesty, which one comes to appreciate. He has light eyes and a hawk-like profile. He describes himself as “abrasive, but also charming.”

Wurman lives with his wife in a 19th-century mansion on eight high-walled…

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About squishymaru

Master's student in chemical engineering with a B.S. in chemical engineering as well. Loves chemistry, math, increasing diversity in STEM, politics, and public health advocacy. Loves reading, writing, and being active -- mentally and physically.

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