WATCH: Everyone Has Their Price — An Introduction to Economics

Money doesn't make the world go round; it's just a stand-in for value, and an arbitrary one at that.

Money doesn't make the world go round. Paper currency and coins are just a stand-in for value, and an arbitrary one at that. Cattle, salt, and seashells all once flourished as the standard-bearer of value before Roman emperors began issuing coins. What has always motivated human behavior in an economy, explains University of Chicago professor of law and economics Saul Levmore, is price.


In this incredible discussion, Levmore brings the future of economics into sharp focus by contrasting the approaches of the emerging global economic powers of India and China.

This is our fifth under-an-hour video feature. Check out all 12 segments of this amazing series on our Floating University Playlist.

From the basics of pricing, demand, and competition, to global politics and the future of government, Dr. Levmore makes it easy to see economics at work all around us. This may well be the only field in which thinking about the cost of a chocolate chip cookie or how airline ticket pricing works is expected to provide insights into the machinations of the entire world.

3D printing might save your life one day. It's transforming medicine and health care.

What can 3D printing do for medicine? The "sky is the limit," says Northwell Health researcher Dr. Todd Goldstein.

Northwell Health
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Medical professionals are currently using 3D printers to create prosthetics and patient-specific organ models that doctors can use to prepare for surgery.
  • Eventually, scientists hope to print patient-specific organs that can be transplanted safely into the human body.
  • Northwell Health, New York State's largest health care provider, is pioneering 3D printing in medicine in three key ways.
Keep reading Show less

Depression is different for everyone. Here’s what it’s like for me.

Depression is quicksand, says comedian Pete Holmes. Try this method to help you cope and live with depression.

Videos
  • Everyone's experience with depression is different, but for comedian Pete Holmes the key to living with depression has been to observe his own thoughts in an impartial way.
  • Holmes' method, taught to him by psychologist and spiritual leader Ram Dass, is to connect to his base consciousness and think about himself and his emotions in the third person.
  • You can't push depression away, but you can shift your mindset to help better cope with depression, anxiety, and negative emotions. If you feel depressed, you can connect with a crisis counselor anytime in the US.
Keep reading Show less

Why the south of Westeros is the north of Ireland

As Game of Thrones ends, a revealing resolution to its perplexing geography.

Image: YouTube / Doosh
Strange Maps
  • The fantasy world of Game of Thrones was inspired by real places and events.
  • But the map of Westeros is a good example of the perplexing relation between fantasy and reality.
  • Like Britain, it has a Wall in the North, but the map only really clicks into place if you add Ireland.
Keep reading Show less
Big Think Edge
  • Conformity is not conducive to good problem solving, says economist and author Tim Harford.
  • The opposite of conformity? Diversity.
  • The kind of discussions that diversity facilitates actually improve the ability of groups to arrive at effective solutions.