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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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Recent Themes

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Extreme Biology

Is This An Exercise of Free Will?

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about 1 year ago

We might think that what drives behavior is individual will.  And in fact, 105 years ago, we thought that the reason people got communicable diseases was because they had some moral failing.  And in fact, what we need to emphasize is that there is a combined responsibility. Individuals, if they ...

Power and Influence

Was Hamlet Guilty of Murder?

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about 1 year ago

We’ve had a lot of fun over the years in connecting the theater to the political world of Washington. A few years ago, maybe more than 10, 12 years ago, we started something called the Mock Trial in which the issue from a play is argued by two opposing lawyers, two different sides, and heard by a ...

21st Century Living

In Defense of Testing

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about 1 year ago

People go into education because they love students.  They want to teach students, they want to help the world.  And people who are in education want to reward each other and they want to feel good about themselves and about each other.  So there’s a natural human aversion to the painful message ...

21st Century Living

Butterfly Fly Again!

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about 1 year ago

Your universe crashes. The world you had constructed in your mind falls like a tower collapsing into the dust of fallen dreams.  Like thunder in the heart, everything seems like it's capitulated - nothing makes sense in your life any more. A crisis? When an unexpected stressful event happens ...

Earth and Beyond

The Venutian Dinosaur Fallacy

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about 1 year ago

This post originally appeared on the Newton blog on RealClearScience. Read the original here. Venus has always captured the attention of humanity. Of all the objects that adorn our night sky, it's the brightest, excluding the Moon. Peering through his telescope in the early 17th century ...

21st Century Living

A 60 Second Commencement Address

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about 1 year ago

We live in very interesting times and as a young person you are going into a very turbulent and fragile economy that is going to get better. It’s going to take a while. When you're going into an employment environment that looks pretty scary, it is easy to lose your moral compass, your decency ...