As the global middle class grows, so does demand for the scarce elements used to make our cell phones and other gadgets. Alex King and his team at the Critical Materials Institute use science to steer us away from a supply chain shortage of critical materials called "rare earth metals". In ancient civilizations, running out of bronze gave rise to the use of inferior iron, and the collapse of empires. King's work seeks to shorten and mitigate the problems associated with such a scarcity.
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)