“Mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cell. Mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cell. Mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cell.”
Among the many failures of traditional education is that it often makes science seem boring. We learn the same basic facts about cell biology ad nauseam, eventually concluding that we don’t like science very much. But the truth is that science is infinitely broader—and more fascinating—than school would have us believe. Take a look at the seven remarkable reads below to see for yourself.
Flight Paths: How a Passionate and Quirky Group of Pioneering Scientists Solved the Mystery of Bird Migration
By Rebecca Heisman
The captivating, little-known true story of a group of scientists and the methods and technology they developed to uncover the secrets of avian migration. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Rebecca Heisman, in the Next Big Idea App
Planta Sapiens: The New Science of Plant Intelligence
By Paco Calvo, with Natalie Lawrence
A leading figure in the philosophy of plant signaling and behavior, offers an entirely new perspective on plants’ worlds, showing for the first time how we can use tools developed to study animal cognition in a quest to understand plant intelligence. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by co-author Paco Calvo, in the Next Big Idea App
Invisibility: The History and Science of How Not to Be Seen
By Gregory J. Gbur
A science writer and optical physicist traces the science of invisibility from its sci-fi origins in the 19th-century writings of authors such as H. G. Wells and Fitz James O’Brien to modern stealth technology, invisibility cloaks, and metamaterials. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Gregory J. Gbur, in the Next Big Idea App
Womb: The Inside Story of Where We All Began
By Leah Hazard
A groundbreaking, triumphant investigation of the uterus—from birth to death, in sickness and in health, throughout history and into our possible future—from a midwife and acclaimed writer. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Leah Hazard, in the Next Big Idea App
The Language of the Face: Stories of Its Uniquely Expressive Features
By Frank Gonzalez-Crussi
A broad and riveting cultural history of physiognomy, exploring how the desire to divine deeper meaning from our looks has compelled humans for millennia. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Frank Gonzalez-Crussi, in the Next Big Idea App
Ghost Particle: In Search of the Elusive and Mysterious Neutrino
By Alan Chodos and James Riordan
The dramatic history of the neutrino, from the initial suggestion that the particle was merely a desperate solution to a puzzle that threatened to undermine the field of particle physics to its modern role in illuminating the universe via neutrino telescopes. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by co-author James Riordan, in the Next Big Idea App
Jellyfish Age Backwards: Nature’s Secrets to Longevity
By Nicklas Brendborg
A molecular biologist pens a love letter to the immense power of nature, revealing how plants and animals have already unlocked the secrets to immortality—and the lessons they hold for us all. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Nicklas Brendborg, in the Next Big Idea App
The Key Ideas in 15 Minutes
“If you are going to get anywhere in life, you have to read a lot of books,” Roald Dahl once famously said. The only trouble is, reading even one book from cover to cover takes hours—and you may not have many hours to spare.
But imagine for a moment: What if you could read a groundbreaking new book every day? Or even better, what if you could invite a world-renowned thinker into your earbuds, where they personally describe the 5 key takeaways from their work in just 15 minutes?
With the Next Big Idea App, we’ve turned this fantasy into a reality. We partnered with hundreds of acclaimed authors to create “Book Bites,” short audio summaries of the latest nonfiction that are prepared and read aloud by the authors themselves. Discover cutting-edge leadership skills, productivity hacks, the science of happiness and well-being, and much more—all in the time it takes to drive to work or walk the dog.
Go Deeper with a Next Big Idea Club Membership
The Next Big Idea App is free for anyone to try—and if you love it, we invite you to become an official member of the Next Big Idea Club. Membership grants you unlimited access to Book Bites and unlocks early-release, ad-free episodes of our LinkedIn-partnered podcast. You also gain entry to our private online discussion group, where you can talk big ideas with fellow club members and join exclusive live Q&A sessions with featured authors.
For a more focused learning experience, we recommend a Hardcover or eBook Membership. Every few months, legendary authors and club curators Malcolm Gladwell, Susan Cain, Adam Grant, and Daniel Pink select two new nonfiction books as the must-reads of the season. We then send hardcover copies straight to your doorstep, or eBook versions to your favorite digital device. We also collaborate with the authors of selected books to produce original reading guides and premium video e-courses, 50-minute master classes that take you step by step through their most life-changing ideas. And yes, it’s all available through the Next Big Idea App.
Learn Faster, from the World’s Leading Thinkers
Whether you prefer to read, listen, or watch, the Next Big Idea is here to help you work smarter and live better. Wake up with an always-fresh Idea of the Day, the perfect shot of inspiration to go with your morning coffee. Then dive into one of our Challenges, hand-picked collections of Book Bites that form crash courses in subjects like communication, motivation, and career acceleration. Later, watch the playback of an interview with U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, Stanford psychologist Jennifer Eberhardt, or philosopher John Kaag. And be sure to check the “Events” tab in the app, so that you can join an upcoming live Q&A and personally chat with the next featured thought leader.
If you’re hoping to grow as a person or as a professional, we hope you’ll join us and tens of thousands of others who enjoy the Next Big Idea. Get started by downloading the app today!