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Sputnik Observatory for the Study of Contemporary Culture [sptnk.org] is the latest project from interactive information design hero Jonathan Harris, well known from other info-aesthetics pieces such as I Want You to Want Me, Whale Hunt, Universe, Love Lines, We Feel Fine and Ten by Ten.

If you want to know more about some perplexing themes like Interspecies Communication, Urban Metabolism or 21 Senses, then this site is for you.

According to Chris himself: "The project is the result of a 2-year collaboration with New York-based Sputnik, Inc., an organization that documents contemporary culture through intimate video interviews with hundreds of leading thinkers in the arts, sciences and technology, covering a wide range of topics. The central premise of the Sputnik project is that everything is connected to everything else, and that topics and ideas that may seem fringe and even heretical to the mainstream world are in fact being investigated by leading thinkers working in fields as diverse as quantum physics, mathematics, neuroscience, biology, economics, architecture, digital art, video games, computer science and music. Sputnik is dedicated to bringing these crucial ideas from the fringes of thought out into the limelight, so that the world can begin to understand them.

Conducted over more than ten years and previously unavailable to the public, the interviews within the site chronicle some of the most provocative human ideas to have emerged in the last few decades. The site itself aims to highlight the interconnections between seemingly disparate thinkers and ideas, using a simple navigational system with no dead ends, where every thought leads to another thought, akin to swimming the stream of consciousness.

There are about 200 videos on the site today, and there will be thousands more added over the coming weeks, months, and years."

More information also at the sptnk blog. Via TEDChris.