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Friday, November 14, 2008

Gapminder - What is left of the Western World?

If you think you understand what is going on in the world, think again and visit Gapminder and take a look the very entertaining and educational animated presentations by Hans Rosling, Professor of Public Health and an excellent presenter using international and UN organizations' statistics to analyze and above all visualize what the world looks like today and into the future.

Hans stated that what kids in school learn is actually based on knowledge and information that is as old as from the year the teacher was born. And since a lot of teachers were born in the 50s, 60s and 70s, what kids learn is what the world looked like back then. As a result most people think of the world as the Western world, orient and developing world.

Play with the animated statistics on the Gapminder site and you will be able to see things Hans highlighted that the Asian boom the last 20 years has meant that countries such as Vietnam has surpassed USA growth and standards in many areas.

The new Global World means
  • Convergence between different continents
  • But not for the last billion people below poverty level
  • And the growth is not based on sustainable technologies

We still have got time to do something for a positive future if we act now. Hans is a very entertaining presenter, he also got stuck with two random events, the first one Microsoft Windows automatic update kicking in during his presentation and the second one, the controller for the big screen at the movie theater quit working leaving the giant screen dark for awhile...

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