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


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

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers


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

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge


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

Innovation: Still More Frustration than Inspiration

March 17, 2013, 11:30 AM

What's the Latest Development?

British inventor James Dyson is on a world tour, promoting his new creation: A water faucet with a built-in hand-dryer. Dyson is the billionaire designer of the famous bagless vacuum cleaner and an example of how perspiration in the pursuit of a long-term goal can pay enormous benefits in return, whether than means a billion dollars or the satisfaction of understanding complex systems. "My inspiration to invent and redesign is fed through frustration," said Dyson. "I spend a lot of time taking things apart and putting them back together, considering how they work and how they might work better."

What's the Big Idea?

While popular culture mythologizes inventors as lone wolves who are suddenly struck with moments of inspiration akin to divine revelation, creating innovative goods, whether through engineering or through painting, requires a willingness to tinker and fail. "The most important thing you need when redesigning something is perseverance and a willingness to fail. Inventors rarely have those hallowed 'Eureka' moments. Developing an idea and making it work takes time and patience." While technology develops fast, successful ideas take time to finesse. 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at BBC Future


Innovation: Still More Frus...

Newsletter: Share: