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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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One New Friend Request from Robot

September 25, 2012, 12:17 PM
Shutterstock_48853708

What’s the Latest Development?

With the number of people on Facebook, it’s likely that you’ll receive friend requests from people you aren’t exactly sure you know. Now there’s a robot, developed by the London based Robosavvy, that wants to be your friend on Facebook. Once you accept its friend request, it uses an online face recognition program to match a person’s appearance to their profile. The robot can then identify the person and call them by their name. The robot also uses a person’s listed musical interests to play their favorite music and dance to it.

What’s the Big Idea?

While the Robosavvy is very basic in its first incarnation, “it's able to seem smart by using web services and mining online data. The team hopes to develop its voice recognition capabilities to allow it to tell interactive stories that incorporate a person's answers into the plot.” While it doesn’t necessarily want to be your friend, it has been developed to be “useful in museums and to greet people in company reception areas.” So you may not end up posting on its wall or sharing your vacation photos with it, but it very well may by your next tour guide.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

 

 

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