Translator: Leslie Gauthier
Reviewer: Denise RQ OK, clock’s already started. if there’s one thing that being both
an engineer and a musician has taught me, it’s the divide in mentality
behind the aesthetic, such as the arts, music, literature, and the objective, such as math,
science, engineering, and so forth. And I hope to demolish
that divide tonight. I start with a quote, mandatory TED quote,
“If it sounds good, it is good.” Why would I pick it? Because its relevance
is not so clear at first. This sets up a criteria
for any aesthetic work to be judged by. If you’re watching a film,
if you’re reading a book, you’re really trying to answer
one question, which is, [AESTHETIC: Good of bad?] is it good or bad? As opposed to a physics experiment,
where you ask, “Is this true or false?” [OBJECTIVE: True or false?] This may seem to support
this divide, but I’d like to think that there’s a lot more overlap
than is at first glance. For example, it’s objectively true to say that yellow and blue
mixed together makes green. The whole color wheel and color theory
is based on these objective observations. Similarly, music theory
is an objective way of analyzing something that will be judged
aesthetically in the end anyway. Does your audience know
what notes you’re playing? Do they care? Not really,
as long as it sounds good, right? You can see behind all these arts
there is science, and similarly, behind science there is art. For instance, some people get
certain feelings evoked by the Sistine Chapel. But those same feelings
might be evoked in other people by telescopic photography of the cosmos
or macroscopic photography of biology. These pictures are truly worth
a thousand words, if not more. The real question is why do I care? I care because people choose
what they do in life based on what they’re bad at. I’m not good at writing so I’m not going
to take writing classes, for example. And it dictates the education you pursued,
the field in which you worked in, it dictates who you socialize with. I don’t like that because I feel like it really narrows the scope and the manner
in which you learn and communicate ideas. Furthermore, I can say
– and this is my final real point – that an idea without
communication is worthless. Why separate the two? Why separate
the objective and the aesthetic? After all, aren’t they
two sides of the same coin? Aren’t they both pursuit of excellence,
wherever it may lead us, and the desire to communicate
those ideas with others, so that they may share
in the excellence that we have found? And, if you combine the two,
it might sound like this. (Music) (Applause) Three seconds! (Applause)