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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

Speedy Genome

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology in Tübingen, Germany, and Indiana University in Bloomington have now been able to measure for the first time directly the speed with which new mutations occur in plants. Their findings shed new light on a fundamental evolutionary ...

IdeaFeed

Tiger Battle

Missing
over 4 years ago

With just over 3,000 left in the world, efforts to save tigers from extinction will be stepped up in 2010 after it topped the World Wide Fund for Nature’s list of most endangered species. “Conservationists say there are just 3,200 tigers left in the world as the future of the species is threatened ...

IdeaFeed

Veggie Emissions?

Missing
over 4 years ago

Treehugger.com asks if climate change-protecting vegetarian humans will one day emit more carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere than cows do. “Imagine a half century has passed. It is the year 2060 and world beef consumption has fallen dramatically: a good outcome for climate-sake ...

IdeaFeed

Freedom to Die

Missing
over 4 years ago

“In a move that is both ethically profound and (so far, at least) politically rare, Montana has become the third state to legalize physician-assisted suicide. A divided state supreme court ruled Thursday that neither state law nor public policy prevented doctors from prescribing lethal drugs to ...

IdeaFeed

Mind Over Matter

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Quietly but noticeably over the past year, Americans have rejiggered their lives to elevate experiences over things. Because of the Great Recession, a recent New York Times/CBS News poll has found, nearly half of Americans said they were spending less time buying nonessentials, and more than half ...

IdeaFeed

Jobless No More

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The worst U.S. employment slump in the post-World War II era may have almost ended in December, signaling the recovery will not be jobless much longer, economists said before reports this week. Payrolls probably fell by 1,000 workers last month, the smallest drop since the recession began two years ...

IdeaFeed

In Praise of 2009

Missing
over 4 years ago

“No one likes the starry-eyed techno-optimists. After all, the automobile was a revolution too, as was the television, and the radio. Most of us find our skins crawling a bit when people compare the current moment to Gutenberg inventing the printing press. It seems historically presumptuous, somehow ...

IdeaFeed

Electronic Incentives

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Federal health officials said Wednesday they have cut billions of dollars from the projected cost of a program to push doctors and hospitals to use electronic medical records, suggesting their previous estimates overstated the number of health care providers likely to adopt the technology. The goal ...

IdeaFeed

Passing the Buck

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The nation's banks will be bombarding customers with new fees and products in 2010 as they try to replace more than $50 billion in revenue wiped out by new rules that clamp down on certain business practices. So far, the changes are mostly concentrated in checking accounts and credit cards. In ...

IdeaFeed

No Laughing Matter

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The most prominent of the Danish cartoonists whose 12 drawings provoked outrage throughout the Muslim world in 2006, narrowly survived an assassination attempt late on Friday night. His attacker, who has close ties to both al-Qa'ida and a Somali group that has killed 42 relief workers trying to ...

IdeaFeed

Parlez-vous Copyright?

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The first effects of France's new law against internet piracy will begin to be felt as the new year begins. The law was passed after a long struggle in parliament, and in the teeth of bitter opposition from groups opposed to internet restrictions. Illegal downloaders will be sent a warning e-mail ...

IdeaFeed

Closed for Business

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The United States has closed its embassy in Sanaa citing threats from an al-Qaeda group. The US embassy posted a message on its website on Sunday saying it was closed ‘in response to ongoing threats by al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula to attack American interests in Yemen’. It did not say when ...

IdeaFeed

Feeling Rejected

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan’s president, suffered a humiliating setback in his attempts to form a new government on Saturday when the Afghan parliament rejected most of his cabinet nominees. In a rare show of defiance, parliament refused to endorse 17 of 24 nominees during a day-long secret ballot ...

IdeaFeed

Body Scan Alternatives

Missing
over 4 years ago

"Amid privacy concerns sparked by the move to triple the number of full-body scanners in US airports, some groups are pushing for alternative technologies they say could provide the same, or better, level of screening without the privacy issues.The Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) move ...

IdeaFeed

Yemen Terror Summit

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Western governments have convened a top-level meeting for this month to discuss strategies to counter Yemen’s growing role as a recruitment base for terrorists, in the wake of last’s week failed attack on a US-bound airliner. The decision to hold the meeting, called on the initiative of Gordon ...