What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

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Interdisciplinary Thinking

Crossing boundaries to use the perspectives and methodologies related to an interdiscipline or an interdisciplinary field

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21st Century Living

How To Be a Polymath

10 months ago

Thinking back on the college recommendations I’ve written over the past few weeks, a pattern leaps up: the most successful students, the ones who are the most lively and engaged in class, the most interesting and most dedicated, are never merely great students. They are also utterly devoted to six ...

21st Century Living

In Defense Of Hashtags

about 1 year ago

All but the most naturally social-network inclined express at least a mild pang of self-conscious shame when they use a #hashtag in a Facebook post, or, worse, a book or article. But no other symbol has invaded our written language quite so quickly in recent memory. I am part of a familiarly ...

21st Century Living

Is Your Pension Safe? Check this Map

about 1 year ago

If you are one of six or so million state or federal employees in the United States, recent events may be getting you a little worried about your retirement security. The potentially devastating fallout for pensioners in bankrupt Detroit is dominating the airwaves. Here is an excerpt from a ...

21st Century Living

Too Sexy for My Boss

about 1 year ago

I’m a proud native Iowan, but the news out of my home state involving a lustful dentist and a “stellar” but “too attractive” dental assistant has me hanging my head. The boss, James Knight, fired Melissa Nelson because he "didn't think it was good for him to see her wearing things that ...

21st Century Living

How To Play A Piano Like A Guitar

about 1 year ago

What's the Latest Development? A team of designers, composers and musicians at Queen Mary-University of London has created a addition to the classic piano keyboard that uses touchscreen technology to produce sound effects, such as vibrato and pitch slides, similar to those heard through string ...

21st Century Living

Hacking The Meat Industry

about 1 year ago

What's the Latest Development? Late last month, about 300 people gathered at Stanford University to participate in Hack/Meat Silicon Valley, a two-day event that followed a model commonly used for tech-based hackathons. Given a series of real-world challenges in the meat industry, participants ...