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Anderson's parents were medical missionarieswho traveled round the world. Aderson was born in Pakistan in 1957 and spent his early life traveling with his parents mostly in Pakistan, India and Afghanistan. Evfentually he returned to England to attend Monkton Combe School, a boarding school in Bath, England. Anderson then went on to Oxford Universitywhere he studied physics and later philosophy, politics and economics. He would eventually graduate with a degree in philosophy in 1978.
After leaving Oxford Chris began his career as a journalist. He worked in newspapers and radio first for a local newspar and eventually for two years producing a world news service in the Seychelles Islands.
Chris was captivated by the personal computer revolution and became an editor at one of the UK's early computer magazines in 1984. He then took out a loan for $25,000 and started Future Publishing. At first the publishing company focused on specialist computer publications but eventually expanded into other areas such as cycling, music, video games, technology and design. For the first seven years Future Publishing doubled in size every year. Chris moved to the United States where he would build Imagine Media in1994. Imagine Media and IGN a popular video game users website. Eventually the two publishing companies Future Publishing and Imagine Media would be merged together. Together they were called Future US and became a public company in 1999.
Anderson's sucess gave him the money to start his first nonprofit organization. The Sparkling Foundation's goal was to tackle global issues using media, technology, entrepreneurship and ideas. Through the Sapling Foundation Chris Anderson would become involved in TED, the project that he is best known for. According to the Times, Anderson purchased TED with the idea that it would “change minds and maybe the world,” he said. That required an act of what Mr. Anderson likes to call “radical openness” by allowing the public access to the once-cloistered confab"
Originally TED was was single confrence held in Monterey California, The confrence was focused on Technology, Entertainment and Design and by invitation only. Sapling Fondation bought the confrence in 2001 and began to take the confrence in a direction that would radically change it. First the confrence was expanded and today there are multiple confrences held in 150 countries around the worls. The confrence now covers all topics not just science and technology. Anderson added a fellow ship program that can now boast 300 alumni. He also intoduced the TED Prize wich awards $1 million dallars and "one wish to change the world" to each winner.
In 2006 Chris made a move that would make TED an international sucess. He posted some of the TED talks on the internet for free. The videos bacame an internet sucess going viral. Anderson was encouraged by this success and once again shifted the focus of the organization. He now saw TED as a A global media company dedicated to "ideas worth spreading". By 2015 Ted had 2,000 talks posted online. In line with the idea of openess and spreading ideas the talks are posted online and available to viewers for free. The talks have been translated into over 100 languages mostly with the help of volunteers from around the world. TED's viewerships has continued to grow and is now around one billion views per year.
In 2009 Anderswondecided to take his idea of openess even further with TEDx. TEDx offered free licenses to local groups that were interested in organizing a TED-like event of their own. Since 2009 there have benn over 10,000 TEDX events. These events have produced over 60,000 TEDx talks. The sucess of TEDx led to TED-ED in 2012. TED-ED is focused on providing free educational videos and tools to both students and teachers. Today there is also TEDMED wich focuses on recent medical innovations.
Not everyone loves TED talks though. Some critictscs have accused it of being elitist. According to Martin Robins of NEWstatesMan the talks take an evangelical approach, "discarding the voice of scepticism and mindlessly parroting ‘fascinating’ ideas instead of challenging them". Martin goes on to claim, Ultimately, the TED phenomenon only makes sense when you realise that it’s all about the audience. TED Talks are designed to make people feel good about themselves; to flatter them and make them feel clever and knowledgeable; to give them the impression that they’re part of an elite group making the world a better place. People join for much the same reason they join societies like Mensa: it gives them a chance to label themselves part of an intellectual elite.
In 2016 Anderso publishe a New York Times bestseller TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking. This book offers
Chris Andersons tips on public speaking.
Chris Andersonhas been married to Jacqueline Novogratz since 2008. Jacqueline Novogratz an entrepeneur and author. She is the founder and CEO of Acumen. Acumen is an organization that has pioneered the concept of social impact investing and uses entrepreneurial approches to solving problems like global poverty. Together Chris and Jacqueline have three children together. Their daughters are Zoe, Elizabeth and Anna. In 2010 The oldest daughter Zoe died from carbon monoxide poisoning she was 24 years old at the time.
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