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.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos


Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers


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

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge


Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more

The Top 5 Innovative Designs & Apps for the Holidays Editors

November 27, 2011, 12:00 AM

1. Leave your wallet behind. Swipe your mobile phone instead. Perhaps we'll remember 2011 fondly as the year the credit card died. In January, Big Thinker (and tech entrepreneur) James Currier reported that Biometrics had gone mainstream -- and that your leather wallet would soon be replaced by a digital one. Google Wallet was released the following May. Square now makes it easy for individuals or small businesses to accept credit card payments. And Barcode scanning apps like RedLaser allow anyone to scan an item and compare prices in-store or online. 

2. Shop without dropping... "When looking at design as a utilitarian problem-solving tool, the smartest solutions are often the simplest ones," says Big Thinker Maria Popova. "That's certainly the case with Tube Grip – a compact inflatable grip-assistant designed to alleviate the pressure heavy shopping bags place on hands by applying basic physics with a bit of everyday ingenuity." Click here for the original post.


3. ...Or make all your presents. "While Americans rush en masse to Wal-Mart and other retail outlets... why not just make presents for your loved ones at home?" ask Big Thinkers Parag & Ayesha Khanna. They estimate that in five years you'll be able to manufacture gifts like toys, bowls, and lamps in the comfort of your living room using a 3D printer. (Until then, your crafty friends and co-workers will have to settle for soup mix or a jar of infused vodka.)

4. Send invitations, seasons greetings, and thank you notes electronically. Click to read Big Thinker Tobin Hacks' Case for Paperless Thank You Cards. Then head over to Paperless Post to create yours for free. 

5. Just add snow. Big Thinker Dominic Basulto's favorite free holiday app, Ogilvy's White Xmas, "lets you live the dream of festive winter snowfall wherever you are. Syncing with your Iphone camera, this smart little app works by adding a gently-falling veil of snow to anything you view. Just click the button and look... it's snowing. Like Bing Crosby, but smaller and easier to control."


Now, let the season begin! Happy Holidays from Big Think!

Image courtesy of Shutter stock


The Top 5 Innovative Design...

Newsletter: Share: