Posted By Leah Baker

Dispatch from Washington, DC also known this week at Snowmaggedon! Yes we are still here but life has become eat/sleep/shovel then eat/sleep/shovel. Up to 30 inches of snow in many places and drifts up to five feet.

 

During this time I re-discovered a favorite place on the web and you may also enjoy it. It is www.Ted.com and it features lectures by influential and innovative thinkers on a wide range of subjects. Some of my favorites are scientists and the woman who brings a brain into the room and sets it on a table. This week was especially interesting because they held their annual conference and it was covered in the press. Keynote speakers included Bill Gates and Jamie Oliver.

 

Jamie Oliver, a famous chef, also received the annual Ted Prize and he talked about his mission to teach children about food. He has a project in West Virginia and has brought fresh foods into the schools and also teaches children how to cook healthful meals. His goal is to cut obesity-related illness in this country and he talks about the related challenges. He wants every child to know how to cook ten healthful meals by the time they graduate high school, he wants a Food Ambassador in every supermarket, he wants truth in labeling.

 

A conference theme this year was simplicity over complexity. I love simplicity and believe that anyone in the research business, such as me, should strive to keep things simple and transparent. Explain findings simply. Explain how many people are in a study, how they were selected, and if it is scientific or not. Too many people say “this is what most associations do!” when in reality they do not know that for a fact – and then you in good faith believe them and make decisions based on misleading information.

 

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