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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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Once Upon a Twitter

October 23, 2009, 6:12 AM
“Last week, BBC Audiobooks America announced that it would sponsor the creation of a story via Twitter feed, using a first sentence written by author Neil Gaiman as the seed and inviting the public to collaborate in completing it, one 140-character passage at a time,” writes The Salon. “The experiment was widely pronounced ‘cool,’ as such things usually are, then promptly forgotten by everyone but the participants -- again, as such things usually are. The several dozen people who contributed to the story seemed to have fun, and perhaps that's all that really matters. A Web 2.0 version of the old surrealist parlor game known as ‘exquisite corpse,’ the twittered story was intended as a publicity stunt for BBC Audiobooks America's line of ‘distinctive single-voiced and full-cast dramatized audiobooks’ and surely succeeded at that. Yet BBCAA intends to publish an audio-only version of the story, read by Gaiman himself, which makes this as apt an occasion as any to raise some questions about the creative potential of social networking. How is a good story invented?”

Once Upon a Twitter

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