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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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Climategate Redux: Why Doubt Persists

November 23, 2011, 8:17 AM

What's the Latest Development?

Hackers have just released a large cache of emails taken from computer servers at a British university and claim the messages are proof that global warming is a hoax perpetrated by climate scientists. It is believed the emails were obtained in 2009, when other messages from the same climate scientists were released to the public just ahead of an important U.N. climate conference. Since then, numerous independent bodies including the Environmental Protection Agency and British House of Commons have dismissed the hackers' claims.

What's the Big Idea?

Why do some groups consistently oppose conclusions reached by a majority of the scientific community? Naomi Oreskes, a science historian and professor at the U of California, San Diego, wrote a book about the topic called "Merchants of Doubt". While opposition is often labeled as a 'contrary viewpoint', she says, it typically has no basis in science whatsoever. During her research, she found links between groups that oppose climate change research and the tobacco industry, which long opposed its links to diseases like lung cancer.

Photo credit: shutterstock.com


Climategate Redux: Why Doub...

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