Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fascinating, Interactive Facts

There's an amazing tool on the web that I want to share, called Gapminder World. It was created by two Swedes, Hans Rossler and his son Ola, and I first encountered it in a TED talk.

It was absolutely mesmerizing, the way customizable data from countries all around the world could be put into this easily-accessible, very clear visual format.

I bookmarked the website after watching the talk, but hadn't dug into it until recently. Truthfully, it had looked so professional on the big projection screen in the TED talk, that I figured the site itself would be a disappointment and not really meant for laymen, so I put off trying it out.

It turns out it's very easy to use and full of more nuance than I expected. I've been playing around with it, and these are the two graphs that I personally found most fascinating. You can 'play' them through time and see how they change, with either all countries displaying or just tracking specific ones.

There are nearly infinite possible combinations, such as literacy rates, carbon emissions, infant mortality, unemployment, access to clean water, GDP, you name it. You don't have to download anything or pay anything. Check it out, and then start messing around yourself!

Global Fertility Graph
Calories, Life Expectancy, and Sugar Consumption Graph

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