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The Bulletin

25 amazing people we talked to in 2012

Posting in Architecture

People, places, companies, products, ideas -- five key things we cover here at SmartPlanet. Where does innovation come from? One or more of these, with a lot of hard work in between.

If there's one thing we covered well in 2012, it's people. It's no secret that there are some brilliant minds out there, and one of our jobs is to tell you their stories. Talk with them face-to-face. Share ideas. Stoke conversation. Indeed, we spoke with several amazing people in 2012 -- you'll find 25 of them below.

Click. Read. Enjoy. Walk away feeling smarter. (We sure did.)

1.) John Maeda (pictured, above), president of the Rhode Island School of Design, on turning "STEM" into "STEAM."

2.) Donna Drummond, city planning director for the City of St. Paul, Minn., on embracing transit-oriented development.

3.) Will Shortz, crossword puzzle-master for the New York Times, on keeping the brain limber.

4.) Bill Nye, the famous "Science Guy," on space exploration.

5.) Susan Shaw, marine toxicologist, on seeing the Deepwater Horizon oil spill up close and personal.

6.) Jake Porway, founder of Data Without Borders, on using information to spur social change.

7.) Justin Hall-Tipping, entrepreneur, on the untapped potential of nanotechnology.

8.) Michael Jantzen, artist, on reinventing the built environment.

9.) Britta Riley, founder of Windowfarms, on crowdsourcing research and development.

10.) Jennifer Pahlka, founder of Code for America, on digitally connecting citizens and their governments.

11.) Jonah Lehrer, science author, on how creativity really works.

12.) Katie Salen, DePaul University professor, on using ideas from game design to help employees and students be more productive.

13.) Iain Couzin, Princeton University professor, on what animal behavior can teach us about human habits.

14.) David Kelley, Stanford University d.school founder, on fostering creative confidence.

15.) Andrew Blum, architecture author, on his "journey to the center of the Internet."

16.) Paul Polak, author, on treating the world's poor as potential customers.

17.) Barbara Block, Stanford University professor, on her mission to create a "wired ocean."

18.) Anant Agarwal, president of the digital education initiative edX, on transforming higher education.

19.) Susan Cain, author, on the power of introverts in business.

20.) Tim Prestero, founder of Design That Matters, on making the world a better place through design.

21.) Johan Ugander, mathematician, on what social networks reveal about how ideas spread.

22.) Matthew Inman, cartoonist behind The Oatmealon making great things.

23.) Allison Arieff, author and urbanist, on rethinking the corporate office.

24.) Temple Grandin, animal scientist and animal advocate, on thinking differently.

25.) Mark Frauenfelder, MAKE editor and Boing Boing founder, on finding the time for DIY.

We published many more interviews this year; you can find them in the Pure Genius and Business Brains sections of this website. (Indeed, it was hard to select only 25 for this list. They're all wonderful.)

Much more to come in 2013. Subscribe to our newsletter or register with us to keep yourself in the loop!

— By on January 2, 2013, 12:14 PM PST

Andrew Nusca

Editor Emeritus

Andrew Nusca is editor of SmartPlanet and an associate editor for ZDNet. Previously, he worked at Money, Men's Vogue and Popular Mechanics magazines. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and New York University. He is based in New York but resides in Philadelphia. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure