"Probably more inhibiting than anything else is a feeling of responsibility. The great ideas of the ages have come from people who weren’t paid to have great ideas, but were paid to be teachers or patent clerks or petty officials, or were not paid at all. The great ideas came as side issues." Isaac Asimov Mulls “How Do People Get New Ideas?” [more inside]
For WIRED magazine's 20th anniversary, they've "gathered stories for, by, and about the people who have shaped the planet's past 20 years—and will continue driving the next."
What Is Your Favorite Deep, Elegant, Or Beautiful Explanation? - Edge 2012 Annual Question (earlier)
"Modern societies have tended to take science for granted as a way of knowing, ordering and controlling the world. Everything was subject to science, but science itself largely escaped scrutiny. This situation has changed dramatically in recent years. Historians, sociologists, philosophers and sometimes scientists themselves have begun to ask fundamental questions about how the institution of science is structured and how it knows what it knows." How to Think About Science is a 24-part series from CBC Radio's Ideas, featuring interviews with Steven Shapin, Ian Hacking, Bruno Latour, and others. The streaming audio links on the show's website seem to be out of commission, but direct links to all of the episodes can be found here.
The Signtific Lab invites people to develop cutting-edge ideas through experiments of imagination and discussion. Experiment One: what would happen if outer space becomes as accessible as the Web today?
64-year-old Frank Pringle has figured out a way to extract oil and natural gas out of nearly anything.
A talk given by Matt Webb on fictional futures, and a whole lot besides. Just some text and some pictures, but he takes you on a most excellent brain adventure, from Italo Calvino to a map of all the biochemical reactions on Earth to Vannevar Bush’s machine, the Memex with dozens of stops in between. One of my favorite parts -- and the coolest use of RSS I've ever seen -- is a tool to subscribe to your personal lightcone. [via]
2005 - The Year in Ideas. From Accredited Bliss to Zombie Dogs, the NY Times runs through the year's scientific, cultural, and academic developments.