15 TED Talks Every Web Designer Should Watch


Whether you’re looking for inspiration or insight, these 15 videos cover everything from personal happiness to the future of web design and internet.

Mike Matas: A Next-generation Digital Book

Mike Matas demonstrates the first full-length interactive book: Al Gore’s “Our Choice”. Displayed on the iPad and combined with the written text is an hour of documentary footage, interactive graphics, audio and maps. Not only does this book introduce new concepts of illustrative art, but it also offers new ways to interact with and organize data to share stories.

Stefan Sagmeister: Happiness by Design

From small posters in the Subway to breathtaking architecture, Stefan Sagmeister takes the audience on a journey, teaching how design brings joy to the public. Weaving personal happiness into his design, Sagmeister offers an uplifting glimpse into the creative process and how this positivity can be reflected into the world.

Don Norman: 3 Ways Good Design Makes you Happy

Don Norman explains how pleasant things work better and how happiness leads to better creativity and better problem-solving. He also delves into the three emotional cues a well-designed product will evoke.

Milton Glaser: How Great Design Makes Ideas New

From the TED archives: Legendary Milton Glaser discusses inspiration for graphic design and the process of creating a meaningful concept from both abstract and structured sources. He also explains how breaking the rules can sometimes be a fresh way to refurbish old ideas.

Rory Sutherland: Life lessons from an Ad Man

In the design world, intangible value can be a creative – and even better – alternative to quantitative value. He asks the very interesting question, “How many problems in life can be solved by tinkering with perception instead of trying to change reality?”

Simplicity Sells: David Pogue

Writer David Progue discusses the importance of customer support for the technological consumer base that stretches beyond call centers to software that is well-designed and easy to use. Using examples from the best and worst interface designs, Pogue discusses how negotiate simplicity with the increasing demand for features.

Denis Dutton: A Darwinian Theory Of  Beauty

Denis Dutton explains the roots of beauty as rooted in the history of humankind. Dutton uses art to describe the journey of shared ideas of beauty across time and across the world, pinning the first example of beautiful design before language was developed. Beauty, according to Dutton, is not in the eye of the beholder, but is instead buried deep in our minds.

David Carson: Design + Discovery

In his entertaining, often hilarious, discussion of simple design (some good, some bad), David Carson shares his views on emotional response to design, including the artist’s intuition. Carson encourages designers to embrace personal perspective to offer a unique approach to their work, forecasting that people will become the center of advertising in the technological age.

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  1. Justin Durano Oct 12, 11:57 am

    This post is AWESOME!
    A very good source of personal happiness to the future WEB DESIGN and INTERNET. It really worth my spare time to watch those videos. I was really entertained and inspired watching the videos. Those people in the video really are WICKED they look after the future.

    Thanks for posting Rachel.

    Evolve for our Success.

  2. Cheap Startups Oct 12, 5:18 pm

    Agreed – this is an amazing post!! Thank you for curating this content for us… :)

  3. Rachel Sanders Oct 12, 5:21 pm

    Hey Justin,

    I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I had a blast watching these videos. I think it made me a much happier person during the two days I researched for it. I might even start the habit of watching one TED video a day…y’know to keep the creative blocks away!


  4. Dave G. Oct 15, 3:44 pm

    These videos really reinvigorated me!

    Thank you.

  5. n@ser Oct 19, 4:01 am

    ..all those videos giving you a hopeful sign of continue creativity even though you just started it for game..

    ..but after a while is started being an obsession..

    ..an obsession of seeing the world with kaleidoscope glasses!

    Thank You!

  6. Hector Rodriguez Oct 29, 3:32 pm

    This is a great compilation. Thanks for taking the time and sharing.

  7. Tim Nov 1, 10:09 pm

    I highly recommend Simon Sinek, who is not listed here :)

  8. e11world Nov 10, 1:54 am

    This was probably the most fun post I have ever seen. I bookmarked this and watched it over 3 weeks (busy life for all I know) and it was worth every second. I realized a lot of things about me through these videos. Thank you so much for these and I’d love to see another post with videos as interesting as these.

    Iraqi designer from Canada :)

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