Impressions from a very inspiring TEDxLeuven

All presentations at TEDxLeuven were projected on a big cinema screen

Let me tell you of a place where you get to shake hands with the president of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy and hang out with the phenomenal chocolate master Domique Persoone at the same time… that place was TEDxLeuven. What is TED or TEDx for that matter? Watch the video below to find out!

I was one of the lucky few that got invited to watch Materialise CEO Wilfried Vancraen give an inspiring speech on 3D printing. It was a speech whitout any promises of the future because the future had already been materialised at this present time. Wilfried Vancraen highlighted this by providing examples of 3D printing applications that his company has been doing for many years already. 3D Printing is not the future, it is the here and now and Materialise is one of the leading players at the forefront of it. Watching Wilfried’s speech reminded me of how much he has achieved over the years and how far he has pushed the company forward. This could be seen by the increase of 3D printed hearing aids over the years until reaching a 100% production coverage or by how Materialise has advanced so much in its ability to change and improve the lives of those in need of medical attention and help. As a matter of fact, this is even something that we have covered in the past in this blog post. It was an inspiring speech that we will be more than happy to share with you as soon as it is made available to us by TEDxLeuven. At this present time, we believe that that date should be around the 6th of April.

A tweet by @vintfalken after Wilfried's speech about how 3D printing is much more than just making 12-sided custom dices as some people might think

Materialise CEO Wilfried Vancraen talking with the TEDxLeuven crowd after his speech

TED is known for providing inspiring speeches and TEDxLeuven was no different in this. I had the honor to watch some of Belgium’s most intriguing people share their thoughts and ideas. People such as Dixie Dansercoer who holds numerous world records as Belgium’s best known adventurer and pole traveler, or Herman Konings who is founder of Belgian trend and future research agency Pocket Marketing/nXt. One by one, each speaker managed to catch my attention and inspire me in many different ways and this is the true power of TEDxLeuven. It gives you an experience that you don’t easily forget, especially when you realise that we sat in a room of brilliant minds with brilliant ideas.

A slide out of Herman Konings' presentation containing a prototype 3D food printer that was created at Materialise for the company Electrolux

Then after the TEDxLeuven event, we moved on towards the M-Museum in Leuven where we got to speak with the actual speakers from the event. Again, this was a very pleasant experience as we spoke with the likes of chocolate master Dominique Persoone about the effects of emotions and food and we even had the pleasure to meet and talk with the President of the European Counil Herman Van Rompuy and his inspiring son and Flemish politician Peter van Rompuy.

From left to right: President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, Materialise CEO Wilfriend Vancraen and Flemish Politician Peter Van Rompuy

So as I said before, TEDxLeuven and the people we met there were truly inspiring in many ways. What is left to do now is provide our community with the actual speeches as soon as we have access to them. Furthermore, we at i.materialise and I believe I can speak for the entire Materialise company… would like to thank the organizers of this event Bruno Delepierre, Peter Van Rompuy and Walter De Brouwer for inviting us to this lovely and unforgettable experience.