Donald Sadoway: The missing link to renewable energy
Prof Sadoway invented a liquid metal battery. Designed towards a low price point, the tech is cheap and scalable. As Rifkin points out, batteries are a key pillar in the 3IR.
The talk is heavily designed to praise/promote the academic way, the value of professors/basic research, and mentoring talent.
I also notice that the word “obsession” is popular on TED. You are supposed to be “obsessed” with your idea. I am too old-school for that, I always preferred the “stumbled across it by accident in my spare time” nonchalance of the great 1800s British scientists.