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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.

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Jaron Lanier: "Friction-Free" Is the Problem With Search Quality

February 1, 2011, 2:37 PM

In part 3 of Big Think's Farsight 2011 event, Jaron Lanier discusses the trouble with un-monetized services on the web. Search's spam problem may be solved by attaching a small micro-payment to every one of our searches. "Is paid search comprising the value of search," asks Big Think emcee Vivek Wadhwa. "I would happily pay Google or Bing 20 or 40 bucks a year for search," says Lanier. 

Later, Esther Dyson took the stage and claimed the future of search will be about verbs, as Bill Gates once told her over dinner. We will want to ask search engines for solutions as to how to do things, rather simply for information. Following Dyson, Di-Ann Eisnor, VP and Community Geographer of the search application Waze, showed off Waze's ability to crowdsource, in real-time, information for traffic directions.

Finally, Blaise Aguera y Arcas, Architect of Bing Maps, summed up the troubles for search presented by our shift from largely using PCs to mobile devices.


Jaron Lanier: "Friction-Fre...

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