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.

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The Paradox of Choice

April 16, 2010, 12:00 AM
There may be plenty of fish in the sea, but we humans tend to get overwhelmed by too many possibilities—whether in choosing potential mates or choosing between brands of jam at the grocery store. Columbia University Business School professor Sheena Iyengar has spent a lot of time thinking about the concept of choice, and why we make the choices we do. 

Growing up in a strict Sikh-American home, Iyengar's ability to control her destiny was limited, and her options were narrowed further when she later lost her sight. As a result, she ended up focusing her studies on the very thing she believed she lacked: choice.  In her Big Think interview, Iyengar says that even animals feel that it's important to have a say in what is going on around them. And while different cultures have different choice preferences, ultimately, once we master something our choices become infinite. 

The Paradox of Choice

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