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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Blog Posts

As I Please

The Great British Election Switch-off

120px-london_houses_of_parliament_and_westminster_bridge
over 4 years ago

IT became known in the end as the ‘Rotten Parliament’. Mired in scandal, exposed as money grubbers and expenses abusers, there will be few tears shed in Britain for many of the departing Members of Parliament – forty of them who bade farewell to the Speaker of the House, John Bercow recently in ...

Hybrid Reality

Fashion Forward - Smart Clothes

Bio_underwear
over 4 years ago

When we think of the Internet of Things, we tend to think of our microwave talking to our mobile phone or our car chatting with our home air conditioning system.  Seldom do we think of ourselves as nodes in this highly networked environment. If we do consider ourselves literally plugged into the ...

Mind Matters

Why People Love Paranoia-tainment

Avatar-v_illlus_use
over 4 years ago

The other night I was watching ABC's remake of "V" and wondering: What if the space-boot was on the other foot? What if we human beings were the "advanced" species, infiltrating a "primitive" people to advance our plan for their world? Maybe we'd even have high-tech disguises to make "us" look like ...

IdeaFeed

Oil Intervention

Missing
over 4 years ago

Former CIA director James Woolsey says America can end its oil addiction (and its reliance on OPEC) by using more electricity, natural gas and biofuels for transportation. "We can move quickly to strike a major blow at oil and OPEC's dominance if we'll adopt a portfolio approach and stop allowing ...

Eruptions

Thanks a million!

Missing
over 4 years ago

A brief, non-volcano-related note, but sometime between 12:30 and 1 PM EDT today, Eruptions will pass 1,000,000 page views since joining ScienceBlogs in March of 2009. I wanted to thank everyone who has made the blog such a fun thing to do and who pick up on reporting the events when I'm swamped ...

IdeaFeed

Palin: The New Gore

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over 4 years ago

John Dickerson writes that Sarah Palin is much more a celebrity than a politician–much like Al Gore–and should be viewed that way. Like Gore, she is "a personality–influential, polarizing, and not likely to be president–who talks about political affairs." For us to expect her to follow the rules ...

IdeaFeed

China's Fortune

Missing
over 4 years ago

"The dominant narrative about China today is that it will, within a few short decades, become the preeminent power in the international system," writes Gordon Chang. "How did this notion of Chinese supremacy gain hold? The answer is nothing more profound than statistical extrapolation." He writes ...

IdeaFeed

Lines of Genius

Missing
over 4 years ago

Elif Batuman looks at seven unproduced screenplays written by famous intellectuals, including Nabokov's "phenomenally depressing" story of a sexually frustrated London circus dwarf, and Sartre's failed Freud epic. Other would-be screenwriters include Winston Churchill, Aldous Huxley, Georges ...

IdeaFeed

Solar Power

Missing
over 4 years ago

Using instruments in space and on the ground, Scientists have developed the most complete picture yet of how large solar eruptions affect the Earth. These eruptions, known as Coronal mass ejections (CMEs), can lead to displays of the northern and southern lights on Earth, but also can cause power ...

IdeaFeed

A Lost Michelangelo?

Missing
over 4 years ago

Citing numerous clues, experts believe that a painting in the Metropolitan Museum of Art that was long attributed to the circle of Francesco Granacci is really by Michelangelo. "I am confident that the only artist capable of making this splendid painting was Michelangelo," said Everett Fahy, one of ...

IdeaFeed

Arrest the Pope?

Missing
over 4 years ago

Pope Benedict XVI, Joseph Ratzinger, "should not be immune from arrest or charge, prosecution or punishment, just because he is the pope; but he also should not be arrested or charged, prosecuted or punished, just because he is the pope," writes Allen Green. "A proper secular and liberal approach ...

IdeaFeed

Education's Funk

Missing
over 4 years ago

"American higher education—much envied, once seemingly impregnable—has found itself settling into a deep funk," writes Edward J. K. Gitre. "Suffering from plummeting endowments and overextended commitments, institutions everywhere are having to make hard, pragmatic concessions to fiscal exigencies ...

IdeaFeed

Drinking With Dickens

Missing
over 4 years ago

Christopher Hitchens writes that if he were transported back to the 19th Century to spend "a long and arduous evening in the alehouses and outer purlieus of London," he'd want to be doing it in the company of Charles Dickens. "He may not have had Shakespeare’s or Eliot’s near omniscience about human ...