These are the stars so far of the 2011 TED Conference

The TED Conference takes place twice a year, and brings together people from the technology, entertainment, and design fields. TED gives these people a platform to demonstrate their knowledge and ideas in an 18-minute time span.

The conference, happening this week, is full of great presenters and ideas. These are just a few of them.

Ford Motor Company

Since the global population is expected to grow to 9 billion people by 2044, the people at Ford are looking for a way to prevent the constant gridlock that is seemingly inevitable on our nation’s highways and streets.

Ford predicts that cars in the future will “talk to each other.” Ford’s SYNC technology is the first iteration of the connected car technology and it is already used in 3 million vehicles. SYNC performs many functions. Among them: 911 Assist, real-time traffic updates, and Vehicle Health Reports.

Ford sees the future iterations being even more robust, with cars being able to re-route you based on real-time traffic information being transmitted from other cars.

Bluefin Labs

Deb Roy, co-founder of Bluefin Labs, recorded the first 90,000 hours of his son’s life by installing surveillance cameras in his home. His team then created machine-learning systems that analyzed the video and tracked the evolution of his son’s learning.

Roy wants to use the technology to analyze things such as an online audience’s reaction to programming and advertisements. This technology, when combined with social media, can potentially analyze real-time responses to ads, making it invaluable to big agencies.

This system could be a great way for businesses to better understand their audiences’ impressions of them.

These are just two of the many innovative ideas that were showcased at TED 2011. For even more interesting ideas, check out this Inc. article.