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

New Evidence Of Volcanoes' Civilization-Killing Abilities

March 22, 2013, 10:31 AM

What's the Latest Development?

A new study published in this week's Science suggests that a series of major volcanic eruptions over a 600,000-year period was what led to the extinction of half of Earth's early animal and plant species prior to the rise of the dinosaurs. The eruptions occurred when all the planet's land was contained in one big supercontinent, and the resulting rift eventually became the Atlantic Ocean. Researchers studied lava flows, sediment layers, and fossil evidence from both sides of the ocean and were able to pinpoint, with a new level of accuracy, dates when species were eradicated.

What's the Big Idea?

Scientists have long suspected that climate change brought on by large amounts of greenhouse gases released by the volcanoes ended the Triassic era about 210 million years ago. They also believed that similar activity caused at least four other major species extinctions. According to lead author Terrence Blackburn, "previous dates for these eruptions had error margins of 1 million to 3 million years, but this study decreases those numbers by an order of magnitude." The end of the Triassic era marked the start of the Jurassic, when dinosaurs began to multiply in areas formerly occupied by other species.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at LiveScience


New Evidence Of Volcanoes' ...

Newsletter: Share: