The World Bank has made available online - http://devdata.worldbank.org/DataVisualizer/ - the 2009 World Development indicators. This is a beautifully designed and presented form of data visualisation. The time pattern of any three out of 50 variables (from GDP to external debt, from trade to demography or military expenditure), for any number of 221 countries over the period 1960-2007, moves in colour smoothly and tellingly through your screen.
This is the luxury of a global research department at your fingertips. You ask the questions, you get the answers in real time. You can construct your own movie, with a happy ending (see the time trend of mortality of under-5 per thousand), an open ending (see the relentless generalised growth of globalisation measured by trade/GDP ratios – until 2007; you don’t see the de-globalisation of the last two years) or a worrying ending (the ballooning of debt). Thanks Mr Zoellick.