This satellite photo from NASA spans a 24-hour period showing the entire surface of the Earth in darkness. The lights obviously show the highest areas of concentration of civilization.
Note the Nile River delta, the Siberian Express railway route, the Australian coastal cities, and Africa, literally "the dark continent".From Princeton's International Networks Archive, the old project of Jonathan Harris.
Entries in population (44)
This is a prime example of how seeing the data visually is better than reading numbers. Here is a population density map from Wikipedia.
We have heard that China and India have most of the human population in the world, but here you can really see and understand how much. Reading that China's population is four times that of the U.S. is much harder than really seeing it on a map.
The Wikipedia page on World Population has some other great information too.
Here's part two, when Hans Rosling followed-up his 2006 presentation with updated software in 2007. It looks like he's been able to get more data from the UN also.
He gets really excited while describes what's happening as the software animates the data about world health.
Hans Rosling is a professor from Sweden who is an expert in world health, but has pioneered some amazing ways to look at massive amounts of data. I mean truly AMAZING. I can think of at least a dozen uses for this software to help visualize changes over time. Don't let the topic scare you, this is incredible to watch.
The Trendalyzer software (recently acquired by Google) turns complex global trends into lively animations, making decades of data pop.This video is one of the TED Talks videos from the 2006 TED Conference.