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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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Using Icons To Display Web Sites' Privacy Policies

December 14, 2012, 9:00 AM

What's the Latest Development?

The makers of the privacy add-on Disconnect are teaming up with Mozilla and the design agency Ocupop to create a collection of icons that will display at a glance what sites are doing with a visitor's data. By installing a Firefox plug-in, users can see the appropriate icons for a particular site in the address bar. The nine icons include one with an image of "a dollar sign with an orange circle and arrow pointing upward, representing that your data could be on the move" and one with a green arrow pointing to a green dot, indicating that the site is using data in a reasonable manner given its function.

What's the Big Idea?

Most privacy policies barely receive a glance from users due to their length and complicated content. Icons in the address bar function the same way as the label (Y, Y-14, etc.) displayed at the beginning of a TV show. Of course, it will take some time for the iconography to be adopted and standardized across all sites and browsers, but the benefits are obvious, according to Ocupop founder Michael Nieling: "[Your company] can’t hide behind something that’s three links deep on your website and takes a hundred hours to read."

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com


Using Icons To Display Web ...

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