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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: What advice do you have for people like Rupert Murdoch or Katie Couric?

Mo Rocca:That’s interesting, but those are all very different people. I think a half hour newscast, which is sort of a dinosaur . . . I think at this point they’re really doing the best that they can. And I don’t watch those shows a lot, but you know when I look at the evening news – the half hour – I actually think they’re sort of doing the best they can under the circumstances. I think that the cable news nets are just such a flawed . . . They’re money making . . . The cable news nets are money making machines certainly; but you know the need to fill all that time makes them . . . makes them flawed. I think that . . . They need . . . The need to keep people there as long as possible, I don’t know. I guess . . . I guess it’s . . . I guess it’s I long . . . Maybe this is . . . Maybe I’m just romanticizing here, but I guess I long for the time when news was just simply a loss leader for these networks. And they accepted that, and they made editorial decisions about . . . based on what they thought the public needed to know. And then the public could then say, like they do with magazines and with cable news networks, “You know what? This network is too liberal for me. This network is too conservative.”

Recorded on: 2/14/08



Mo Rocca:What advice do you...

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