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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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Question: Who would you interview and what would you ask them?

Adam Bly: My first instinct would be to say President Bush because I don’t think that what has happened over the last seven years has been insignificant to the state of the world. And I think that I would really like to understand, because I think that there’s great intellectual value in trying to figure out how this was all built in order to disentangle it going forward; to understand the hostility towards science that he personally, but that his administration, and that some members of his party have espoused and advanced. And I think that it’s useful knowledge. I am deeply interested in it, and hoping that it comes from a place of intellect and of reason that I will completely disagree with; but I really wanna understand the war on science. Beyond simply being fearful of the unknown, maybe it’s that. You know maybe it’s the certainties that he and others characterize as qualities of leadership, and maybe science doesn’t provide that. Maybe it’s taking man under the equation and seeing a world without us, and our perhaps inconsequential value to the world. Maybe it’s the God factor. Whatever it is, I think that in order for us to really achieve a scientific renaissance in the 21st century, I think the United States has to be a part of it. It certainly can’t be a force against it. And in order for the United States to be a force for it, we need to understand the motivations for the disruptions and the disruptive forces acting against it.


Recorded on: 10/17/07







Making Sense of George W. B...

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