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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IdeaFeed Posts

Big ideas in the news from around the web

IdeaFeed

Is Avatar Real?

Missing
over 4 years ago

While "Avatar" remains science-fiction, the fundamental components behind a remote consciousness that drives the film's escapades continue to progress and already have practical uses in medicine. "Now the highest-grossing film ever, 'Avatar,' has captivated millions of viewers with its picturesque ...

IdeaFeed

Haiti's Creditors

Missing
over 4 years ago

The Canadian Prime Minister has announced that the G-7 countries will cancel all their bilateral debt with Haiti encouraging other nations like Venezuela and Taiwan to do the same. "Some $1.2bn (£800m) of Haiti's debts to countries and international lending bodies has already been cancelled. 'We are ...

IdeaFeed

Love Science

Missing
over 4 years ago

Online dating companies are getting more technical in their match-making abilities including matching couples based on genetic markers of the immune systems. "If finding true love were an exact science, we wouldn’t need matchmakers, singles bars or, of course, online dating services. Like job ...

IdeaFeed

Money Maker

Missing
over 4 years ago

Speaking at the closing of the Tea Party Convention in Nashville, Sarah Palin was likely happier to take her hundred grand speaking fee than boost her 2012 chances, says Bloomberg News. "Sarah Palin criticized President Barack Obama’s first year in office by saying 'the list of broken promises is ...

IdeaFeed

Scott-Heron, Come Out!

Missing
over 4 years ago

Anticipating a new album fifteen years after his last release, Gil Scott-Heron gives an interview to The Guardian recalling Rikers Island and his white English fans. "'People keep saying I disappeared,' the singer tells me, laughing heartily, when I speak to him. 'Well, that's a gift I didn't know I ...

IdeaFeed

A Muddy Mess

Missing
over 4 years ago

A ten-ton boulder that diverted drainage off a mountain side sent mudslides through an L.A. neighborhood evacuating 500 homes and entering 43. "An unexpectedly powerful rainstorm unleashed a torrent of mud that inundated more than 40 houses Saturday, leaving La Cañada Flintridge's northernmost ...

IdeaFeed

Seeing Orange

Missing
over 4 years ago

The Kremlin-friendly candidate in Ukraine's presidential election is suspected to have a fraudulent upper hand while a heroine of the Orange Revolution is preparing to protest his victory in the streets. "A grim mood of déjà vu is hanging over Ukraine's snowbound capital, amid news that both ...

IdeaFeed

Nervous Donkeys

Missing
over 4 years ago

Speaking with Democrats yesterday, Obama sought to reassure his party of the White House's support during the coming elections and renewed his commitment to healthcare reform. "President Barack Obama sought to reassure nervous Democrats Saturday, pledging to push against the political headwinds ...

IdeaFeed

Literary Scandal

Missing
over 4 years ago

The New Republic takes exception to Nabokov's posthumous "novel" while levelling charges of bad taste against his son and extortion against Knopf publishing. "So this is what we’ve all been waiting for? The last, lost work of the great master, all but complete, so rumor had it, at the time of his ...

IdeaFeed

Space Race II

Missing
over 4 years ago

For now the U.S. is content to encourage privately funded space missions and international cooperation while a new Space Race may soon fill the vacuum left by a hobbled NASA. "Forty years ago the U.S. raced to plant the first foot on the moon. Now, as India, Russia, South Korea and China compete to ...

IdeaFeed

East Coast: Closed

Missing
over 4 years ago

In preparation for a storm expected to bring 30 inches of snow to the greater Washington D.C. area, vehicle curfews have been imposed, flights delayed and public transportation closed. "An 'epic snowstorm' smacked the nation's capital and mid-Atlantic states Friday, and a father and son were killed ...

IdeaFeed

Nuclear Exchange

Missing
over 4 years ago

Iran's announcement that it is moving closer to sending low-grade nuclear material to China for reprocessing has caused a rift in the international community over how to deal with an assertive Iran. "In Germany, Manouchehr Mottaki said a deal to send enriched uranium overseas in exchange for nuclear ...

IdeaFeed

Collider Delay

Missing
over 4 years ago

After being plagued with technical problems, the partical collider meant to discover the origins of the universe will not run at full power for at least another three years. "The world’s biggest and most expensive physics experiment will finally rumble into regular operation later this month, but it ...

IdeaFeed

Sexy Music?

Missing
over 4 years ago

Searching for a biological explanation of music, the British science writer Philip Ball takes stock of Darwin's idea that it could aid in the reproductive process and Steven Pinker's view that it is merely icing on the cake. "Charles Darwin, in 'The Descent of Man', noted that 'neither the enjoyment ...

IdeaFeed

Revolutionary Nonsense

Missing
over 4 years ago

Awaiting a speech from Sarah Palin, political vagueries and revisionist histories took center stage this week as the first-ever Tea Party convention opened in Nashville, Tennessee. "Ask Gail Hathaway, a warm 61-year-old retired nurse from Vonore, Tenn., what she wants out of the 'tea party' movement ...