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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Fluid Pattern

November 16, 2009, 6:18 AM
“An 18th-century savant called Joseph-Louis Lagrange was a pioneer of the study of moving fluids (among many other things), but his ideas outran the computational tools of his day. Only now, with supercomputers available to help with the calculations, is it possible to explore those ideas completely. What is emerging is a picture of fluid dynamics more subtle and more complex than anything dreamed of even a decade ago. The atmosphere and the ocean are, it seems, dominated by invisible barriers that have come to be known as Lagrangian coherent structures. They govern the movement of everything from the trajectories of aircraft to the distribution of pollution, the migration of jellyfish and the tracks taken by hurricanes. They are, as it were, the skeletons of the sea and the air.”

Fluid Pattern

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