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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Rightly Understood Posts

A conservative take on the world

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Rightly Understood

Are Americans Too Busy?

Work
4 months ago

From a certain view, the most probing question Alexis de Tocqueville had to answer in Democracy inAmerica is “Why are the Americans so restless in the midst of prosperity?”  Why can’t they just stop and enjoy all their good fortune?  Why are those workaholics almost running away from leisure?  Why ...

Rightly Understood

Panera Bread Is Getting Less Personal!

Panera
4 months ago

As I've said before, my home away from home is Panera Bread.  It has a fireplace with real gas logs, couches, and a leisurely and rather personal environment.  It's a lot like Cheers, but with beer replaced by coffee.  So it's not a place to escape from the wife and kids; they're as welcome as ...

Rightly Understood

The Brutal Ageism of Silicon Valley

Imagescagkusll
6 months ago

We’re told that our high-tech meritocracy based on productivity is the source of our enlightenment when it comes to our resolute opposition to racism, sexism, and heterosexism.  Certainly the demands of our global competitive marketplace have attuned us more than ever to the productive truth ...

Rightly Understood

Was Harold Ramis a Republican?!

Harlodl_ramis
7 months ago

So here's an absolutely humorless article from the somewhat humorless liberal Salon that accuses the seemingly philosophic filmmaker Harold Ramis of having been a semi-closeted (well he's loud and proud in Ghostbusters) Reaganite.  The critic says that quite negatively, as evidence of Harold's ...

Rightly Understood

Quick Thoughts on Ukraine and Europe

Untitled
7 months ago

So I rarely share my opinions on contemporary international relations.  Let me throw caution to wind and say something about the significance about what’s going on in Ukraine. The real issue is whether Ukraine gets to be part of Europe or the “Eurasian” coalition being built by Russia’s tough and ...

Rightly Understood

The Dystopian HER

Her
7 months ago

Her is quite the meticulous and creepily seductive criticism of our techno-orientation toward transhumanism.  It is the dystopian film of our time, a haunting glimpse at the near future. The transhumanist theory is that, when you strip away the illusions, we're all basically Operating Systems ...

Rightly Understood

Don't Make Me Love My Work!

Steve_jobs
8 months ago

Miya Tokumitsu writes with incisive elegance about our altogether elitist and self-indulgent view that our experts have these days about the relationship between love and work.  That view, of course, originates mainly from Silicon Valley:  Your great work, which you love, is so creative and ...

Rightly Understood

The Word of the Year: SCIENCE

Aristotle.
8 months ago

The Merriam-Webster people have named SCIENCE the word of the year. Why?  It had “the greatest increase in look-ups” in the online version of their dictionary.  This data might be pretty solid, given that they have about 100 million look-ups a month.  A lot more people wondered what science ...