As I was searching for data mining and data visualization tools I came across the data visualization website Gapminder by Hans Rosling, the professor of Global Health in Karolinska Institute, Sweden. The website presents over a century of statistic data in visual form in graphs, the data being UN and other world organizations out-sourced.

The professor has done an extensive work with plenty of data sources for this data visualizer, and his efforts are notable.

What I was impressed with at first is the tool’s ability to display certain characteristics for all nations in each time slot, as well as play it through in the time scope as far back as 1880 if applicable. The visualizer also features the ability to trace a nation’s development in certain characteristics through the years. Thus I could compare my grandparents’ life style with the current life style (e.g. average life length and/or income).

The characteristics (indicators) are of vast variety (600+) in most relevant topics like Work, Health, Economy, Environment, Society, Population and others (starting from Wealth and Health to Corruption score or Water resources and much more). This not only eliminates the need for a casual user to turn to boring UN or World Bank tabled data, but also gives the user a tool to produce the graph comparisons of his choice, for example Environment-Health or Population-Society.

The tabled data are also accessible for each graph displayed; just click on the grid thumbnail (in red circle on the image above).
A reference to each data source is also helpfully provided there.

This visualizer is also available as the free, stand-alone app Gapminder Desktop or pdf maps.

I believe this web product is a good example of up-to-date data processing with relevant data visualizing.