Abraham Verghese

Abraham Verghese

Abraham Verghese, an Ethiopian-born Professor of Medicine at Stanford University, has taken the world by storm with his two very different callings: physician and bestselling author. His novel Cutting for Stone is a gripping family saga of an immigrant surgeon which spans over three continents. It has been called "a masterpiece of traditional storytelling." More about Abraham Verghese

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Åsne Seierstad

Award-winning journalist, writer and war correspondent Åsne Seierstad reported live on Norwegian and Swedish TV when US troops invaded Iraq. Since then, she has published internationally-noted books which have made her the third-bestselling author in Norway. In her latest book, Angel of Grozny, the Russian-speaking Norwegian reporter returns to the place where she started: inside Chechnya. More about Åsne Seierstad

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Ben Hammersley

British journalist, broadcaster and photographer Ben Hammersley focuses on technology journalism. He is currently Deputy Editor of Wired magazine UK, which was relaunched this spring-an indication that the high-tech magazine still believes in paper. Hammersley has reported for The Guardian, The Times (London) and the BBC from Iran and Afghanistan. He has also traveled undercover to interview Burmese opposition leader and Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi. More about Ben Hammersley

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Cecilia Weckström

Designer Cecilia Weckström, Experience and Innovation Director at LEGO, has revolutionized the way the Danish toymaker uses customer experience and consumer insights to co-create new toy lines. Cecilia is a leading expert on creativity, learning and child development. She lives in London, is originally from Helsinki, and bicycles wherever she can. More about Cecilia Weckström

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David Carr

New York Times reporter and media columnist David Carr investigated the darkest story he has ever covered—his own. With his journalistic tools, he revisited his long, brutal trip from being a crack addict to becoming an acclaimed reporter at the New York Times. The Night of the Gun is his breathtakingly honest memoir of that time. More about David Carr

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Esther Dyson

Journalist, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and leading expert on digital technologies, Ester Dyson is the internet's court jester and a Silicon Valley legend. She has been a board member and early investor in many startups, including Flickr. She regularly contributes to The Huffington Post and lives in Star City, California, where she is training to be a cosmonaut backup and spaceflight participant. More about Esther Dyson

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Hans Rosling

The world-renowned Swedish global health professor from Karolinska Institute in Stockholm captivated the audience at GRID conferences. With boundless energy, interactive graphs and even a casino wheel. With a new take on the world economy, which he called Das Kapital 2.0, he challenged our understanding of social and economic development more than once at GRID. More about Hans Rosling

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Ilse Crawford

Named one of Britain's 30 most influential women in the Harper's Bazaar power issue for "her knack for defining the way we want to live," Ilse Crawford is one of the biggest stars in the interior decorating world. As a designer, she not only predicts trends - she creates them. Ilse Crawford is the founder of Elle Decoration UK, was Vice President of Donna Karan Home and now runs her own design studio in London. She is also the designer behind the new look of the Grand Hotel restaurant in Stockholm. More about Ilse Crawford

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Mathias Osvath

The news spread around the world: apes plan for the future! Swedish cognitive scientist Mathias Osvath has led the study of primates at the Furuvik Zoo in Sweden. He believes that even apes have an inner world with pictures and feelings. Now he challenges us to discover new ways of thinking about both animal and human consciousness. More about Mathias Osvath

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Nils Mueller & Sven Tollmien

German TrendONE-researchers Nils Müller and Sven Tollmien take you on a safari into the future of technology. From their outpost in Hamburg and Berlin, TrendONE identify 300 worldwide microtrends every month to support creative thinking and innovation. You may think the future is unknown, but it already exists. More about Nils Mueller & Sven Tollmien

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Rosalind Picard

One of the world's leading experts on artificial intelligence, Professor Rosalind Picard is the founder and director of the Affective Computing Research Group at MIT in Boston and co-director of the Things That Think consortium. Together with her students, she designs and develops sensors, algorithms and systems that recognize and respond to human affective information. More about Rosalind Picard

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Steve Preeg

Digital-effects wizard Steve Preeg was awarded with an Oscar this year for giving Brad Pitt an older face in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. As animator at Digital Domain, Steve Preeg works at the leading edge of computer-generated visual storytelling. That’s where reality and digitally-created worlds collide. More about Steve Preeg

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Steven Berlin Johnson

Dynamic writer and speaker Steven Johnson crafts captivating theories from an array of disciplines. His big-brained, multidisciplinary theories make him one of his generation's more intriguing thinkers. Following the twists and turns his own mind makes, he takes the reader on a journey as he connects seemingly disparate ideas: ants and cities, interface design and Victorian novels. He is the author of Everything Bad is Good for You and The Invention of Air. More about Steven Berlin Johnson

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