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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.

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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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How & Why Apple Tracks Your Location

April 21, 2011, 7:07 AM

What's the Latest Development?

Researchers Alasdair Allan and Pete Warden have found that any Apple device with 3G data access is logging location data to a file called consolidated.db with latitude and longitude coodinates and a timestamp. In other words, your every move is logged and backed up if you have a 3G portable device made by Apple. More worrisome still, this data would not be difficult to access for those with even moderate technical knowhow. "Anyone with a good jailbreaking tool could get [location information] off the phone," said iPhone hacker and forensics expert Jonathan Zdziarski.

What's the Big Idea?

Apple used to run advertisements against companies like I.B.M. that it considered too big and too controlling for society's good. Now it seems like Apple has given itself carte blanche, thanks to its dominance in the consumer electronics market, to do what it wants without much regard for consumer security. "Apple has some explaining to do. iPhone owners place a great deal of trust in Apple, and Apple has a responsibility not to abuse that trust," said Timothy B. Lee at the Princeton University Center for Information Technology Policy.


How & Why Apple Tracks Your...

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