Big Idea Famine

Parse the title either way—I believe that 30 years from now people will look back at the beginning of our century and wonder what we were doing and thinking about big, hard, long-term problems, particularly those of basic research.


Stephanie Strom
PubPub Community Manager


Open Source
Mathai Fenn
Not everything is bad. I am a fan of Open Source Software and now Hardware, thanks to Rohit Fenn and his passion for open source projects. Here is one of the projects he is working on.
The Detrimental Effects of Modern Startup Culture
Corey Acri
This is one of the greatest threats to our future. We need to have more innovation that has social impact from both a cultural and economic prospective. Many of these sentiments are aptly discussed in Tim O’Reilly’s WTF. There is a need to think big but also think big to yield greatest societal impact. Unfortunately, only a handful of the best investors are looking for this result. The rest are looking for high returns.
Generating 'Big Innovative Ideas' in our school system is key to this famine
Sumit Kumar Singhal
I feel, like for most things in life, balance and optimization of multiple ideas and ideologies is key. Too much of one side - capitalism or socialism would lead to such famine.‘Social Entrepreneurship’ is one answer that i have seen in US which is bridging some gap for this famine. One example is ‘’ that is working at the grassroots level to bring big and positive changes to the overall K-12 education system ensuring each kid reaches their maximum potential in life.As an extension i think ideas like MIT Media lab should be brought into our High Schools and kids should be encouraged to work on their ‘big ideas’ as early as possible. The aim / objective of any K-12 school system should be to continuously and actively ‘HELP’each student discover their core passion by providing several project based discovery paths while they are in elementary & middle school and help them narrow down to 2 paths when they enter as freshmen in high school and finally to one CORE area in their Junior year where each student would work with a group of like-minded classmates / partners to complete a commercially viable (real-world) solution to a ‘Big Idea’. This project success should serve as the High school Diploma for them. The school system should ensure full process support to kids via resources & mentor-ship during this process.I think changes in our K-12 education system at such grassroots level are needed to deal with this famine we face today.