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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Praxis Posts

Theory & political commentary


Three Good Reasons to Tell a Lie

7 months ago

A few weeks ago, I heard Sam Harris on the radio pitching his new book, Lying , and found myself with furrowed brow over his absolutist stance against telling tales. Is it true that “we can radically simplify our lives and improve society by merely telling the truth in situations where others ...


Why Are the Rich Fearing for Their Lives?

7 months ago

“A spectre is haunting Europe,” Marx wrote semi-ironically in 1848, “the spectre of communism.” Almost 170 years after the publication of the Communist Manifesto, the apparition of class warfare is making some wealthy people bug out in outlandishly ridiculous ways. The most alarming and ...


Will You Make More Money than Your Parents?

7 months ago

A major new research study shows that income mobility in the United States is right about where it was forty years ago. That may sound like good news if you were assuming that the American Dream has been in decline over the generations, but don't stand up and cheer just yet. First, mobility wasn ...


Can This Quiz Predict Your Politics?

7 months ago

We all carry stereotypes about people of different political persuasions. Are conservatives more persnickety about neatness and less tolerant of difference? Are liberals more loosey-goosey with their morals and less inclined to hoist a flag on their front lawn? It is wrong to over-generalize, of ...


Satan Is Comin' to Town

9 months ago

Oklahoma City, the "buckle of the Bible Belt," may soon have a monument to Satan on its statehouse steps.  Yes, that Satan, the devilish guy whose name is an anagram of the red-suited gentleman coming soon to chimneys near you. Christian conservatives, of all people, seem to be responsible ...


Three Mandela Misconceptions

9 months ago

The Nelson Mandela of American mythology differs in a few key ways from Nelson Mandela the man, Tony Karon points out in a must-read essay. First, Karon argues, Mandela was no pacifist. “He played a leading role,” Karon writes, “in setting up the ANC’s guerrilla wing, and traveled abroad to ...


Are Your Frequent Flier Miles Safe?

9 months ago

Don’t count on it. Listen to the sobering tale of Binyomin Ginsberg, an itinerant rabbi from Minnesota. Rabbi Ginsberg was a frequent traveller on the old Northwest Airlines (now part of Delta) and amassed enough miles to reach super elite status in the WorldPerks program. But his huge bank of ...