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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12,000+ Expert Videos


Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

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World Renowned Bloggers


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

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Big Think Edge


Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

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DIY Physics

The Big Idea for Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Over the last four years, Big Think has featured over 3,000 interviews with experts who are either leading their fields or disrupting their fields. At the same time, we believe the notion of what constitutes an expert is ripe for discussion. After all, you can pile up all the academic degrees you want and still fail to make your mark in the real world. Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg, on the other hand, both dropped out of college.

Moreover, the democratizing power of technology has enabled do-it-yourselfers everywhere to contribute to the knowledge economy, regardless of their academic credentials. And yet, a lot of tension has been created in the scientific community as 'outsider scientists' have challenged mainstream thinking, in quantum physics, for instance. This is the subject of an exciting new book by Margaret Wertheim, which raises the question of what the status of these outsiders should be in our knowledge economy. 


  1. 1 DIY Physics: It's Not Brain Surgery
    Daniel Honan Re-Envision
  2. 2 Einstein, Meet Newton; Newton, Meet Einstein
    Daniel Honan Think Tank
  3. 3 Genius or Crazy? Jonathon Keats
    Jason Gots Genius or Crazy?
  4. 4 Is String Theory Strung Out?
    Peter Woit

DIY Physics

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