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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Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

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The Sound (and Form, and Color, and Joy) of Music

December 24, 2009, 2:41 AM

What is it like to create music, on both a technical and emotional level? This week Big Think presents a fascinating tour inside the mind and heart of one of America's most distinguished composers, Grammy Award winner Maria Schneider.

In explaining her creative process, Schneider spoke largely in visual-spatial terms, describing the "almost architectural" approach she takes in creating "sculptures" of sound. At the same time, she described the parts she writes for individual orchestra members as love gifts to her fellow musicians. Revisiting her early days as an artist, she tapped even deeper into the emotional and imaginative roots of her art, recalling the piano teacher who first inspired her and the phantasmagorical world music opened up for her in her sleepy corner of Minnesota.


The Sound (and Form, and Co...

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