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.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

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.

Find out more
Close

Best At Drawing Animals In Motion: Cavemen

December 7, 2012, 1:30 PM
Shutterstock_73317445

What's the Latest Development?

Biological physicist Gabor Horvath and his colleagues decided to build upon a 2009 study that uncovered the high number of errors in drawings of moving quadrupeds found in anatomy textbooks and museum displays. This time, they compared 1,000 art examples from prehistory, the time period prior to Eadweard Muybridge's seminal films showing horses in motion, and the time period after the 1887 public release of those films. The findings, published this week in PLOS ONE, revealed that the drawings of prehistoric cave artists were the most accurate in terms of capturing an animal's true gait.

What's the Big Idea?

The researchers had estimated that, simply by chance, artists in general would get the gait wrong 73 percent of the time. However, art produced after prehistory but before Muybridge was wrong 83 percent of the time. Interestingly, the art produced after Muybridge was more accurate, but not by as much as one might think: 58 percent of samples were in error. Cave artists working between 10,000 and 50,000 years ago, on the other hand, got it right 54 percent of the time, suggesting that there's something to be said for having an extremely close relationship with the natural world.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

 

Best At Drawing Animals In ...

Newsletter: Share: