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

Shell’s Iraqi Oil

Missing
over 4 years ago

A joint bid from oil companies Shell and Petronas has today secured a contract for one of Iraq’s “supergiant” oilfields following a two-day-long auction of the resources. “Majnoon, in southern Iraq, near the border with Iran, has reserves of 12.6 billion barrels of oil and currently produces 45,900 ...

IdeaFeed

Solar DIY

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Solar technology is going where it has never gone before: onto the shelves at retail stores where do-it-yourselfers can now plunk a panel into a shopping cart and bring it home to install. Lowe's has begun stocking solar panels at its California stores and plans to roll them out across the country ...

IdeaFeed

Google Vs World

Missing
over 4 years ago

Google.org has demonstrated a new tool which, if implemented, could help to combat climate change by monitoring the state of the world’s rainforests. “[The] new ‘high-performance satellite imagery-processing engine’ can process terabytes of information on thousands of Google servers while giving ...

IdeaFeed

Grave Robbery

Missing
over 4 years ago

Grave robbers have stolen the body of Tassos Papadopoulos the former president of the Republic of Cyprus a year after his death. Witnesses at the Deftera cemetery where he had been buried said the coffin had been opened and the grave left empty and that scores of police officers were investigating ...

IdeaFeed

Hey Presto!

Missing
over 4 years ago

A simple genetic “flick switch” can transform female ovary cells into male testicular ones according to scientists who have been experimenting on mice. “The battle of the sexes is a never-ending war waged within ourselves as male and female elements of our own bodies continually fight each other for ...

IdeaFeed

Wired Brain

Missing
over 4 years ago

A breakthrough has been made in wireless brain-to-computer connection speech synthesizer technology which could allow victims of paralysis the ability to speak again. “A system that turns brain waves into FM radio signals and decodes them as sound is the first totally wireless brain-computer ...

IdeaFeed

Gunning For It

Missing
over 4 years ago

“When it comes to passing sensible gun laws, Congress typically offers Profiles in Cowardice. The National Rifle Association wields power that would make an Afghan warlord jealous because the organization is thought to command legions of one-issue voters ready to punish any deviationism from the ...

IdeaFeed

Sea Refill

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Research has revealed details of the catastrophic Zanclean flood that refilled the Mediterranean Sea more than five million years ago. The flood occurred when Atlantic waters found their way into the cut-off and desiccated Mediterranean basin. The researchers say that a 200km channel across the ...

IdeaFeed

Suing Bruno

Missing
over 4 years ago

A Palestinian shopkeeper called Ayman Abu Aita who was portrayed as a terrorist in the film “Bruno” is suing Sacha Baron Cohen, David Letterman and others for $110m. “In the film, Cohen plays a gay Austrian fashion journalist trying to make it big in the US. To achieve worldwide fame, Bruno travels ...

IdeaFeed

Arms Treaty Looms

Missing
over 4 years ago

“The United States and Russia said they were closing in on a successor arms reduction treaty that would further slash their nuclear arsenals and put their relations on a more solid footing. ‘We're getting closer,’ White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters here, asked about the prospect for ...

IdeaFeed

Google Goggles

Missing
over 4 years ago

The new Google tool, Google Goggles, which allows users to search using pictures and not words, will exclude faces from its results for fear of a privacy backlash. The service, currently available only on Google Android cell phones, allows users to focus their phone camera on an object and the ...

IdeaFeed

Info Consumption

Missing
over 4 years ago

A new report from the University of California, San Diego, suggests that the average American household consumed a staggering 3.6 zettabytes of information in 2008. “If a zettabyte is beyond your comprehension, too, it’s essentially one billion trillion bytes: a 1 with 21 zeros at the end. To put ...

IdeaFeed

Public Facebook?

Missing
over 4 years ago

Facebook has announced measures to encourage its 350m users to make their status updates and shared content visible to the search engines – and the world at large. “The company says the move is all about helping users protect their privacy and connect with other people, but the new default option is ...

IdeaFeed

American Jihad?

Missing
over 4 years ago

“Five young Americans detained in Pakistan, which is fighting an increasingly violent Taliban insurgency, wanted to join a jihad, or holy war, a police official said on Thursday. The five men, students in their 20s from northern Virginia, were detained this week in the city of Sargodha in Punjab ...

IdeaFeed

Royal Snub

Missing
over 4 years ago

President Obama, who arrived in Oslo to collect his Nobel Peace Prize today, has angered Norwegians over his decision to cancel a series of events normally attended by the winner. “Obama is scheduled to meet the Norwegian prime minister, Jens Stoltenberg, and the Norwegian royal family before ...