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

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

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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.

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Blog Posts

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Think Tank

Microbes in Space

Bt_astronaut_final
1 day ago

It's certainly cheaper than sending a person: NASA will be sending microbes into space. Researchers at UC Davis are leading the initiative. The big idea presented here is that the study will allow us to understand how bacteria lives in microgravity, which is important to understand as humans ...

> 1,000 Words

Sky Warp

Bt_sky_warp_final
1 day ago

Unfortunately, this is not what the night sky looks like on a planet many light years away. This image was captured here on Earth. From NASA's website: What's happened to the sky? A time warp, of sorts, and a digital space warp too. The time warp occurs because this image captured in a ...

Errors We Live By

How To Avoid Your Own Brain's Biases

Bigthink_blind_men_and_elephant
1 day ago

Thinking, like seeing, has built-in blind spots. An old parable and Husserl’s matchbox can illuminate these geometric, biological, and cognitive limits. We can't evade their unseen dangers unaided. In the parable six blind men try to describe an elephant they’re standing beside. Feeling ...

> 1,000 Words

Star Trails Over El Capitan

Bt_mountain_final
2 days ago

From base to summit, Yosemite's El Capitan is around 3,000 feet, and hiding the north celestial pole in this photograph. But follow the star trails, and you'll of course get a sense of where the north celestial pole is anyway.  NASA has more:   Their short arcs reflecting the planet's ...

Neurobonkers

When Evidence Backfires

When-evidence-backfires
2 days ago

Don't read this blog post. Definitely don't read it to the end. Didn't I tell you not to read this blog post? You're still doing it... We can laugh at our inherent ability to be contrary, but unfortunately something similar can happen when we give a human being scientific evidence that debunks ...