If you’re interested in visualization, check out this very cool TED talk by Hans Rosling, accompanied by interesting visualizations.
The software being used is called Trendalyzer. Wikipedia summarizes its principal features well:
The information visualization technique used by Trendalyzer is an interactive bubble chart. By default it shows five variables: Two numeric variables on the X and Y axes, bubble size and colour, and a time variable that may be manipulated with a slider. The software uses brushing and linking techniques for displaying the numeric value of a highlighted country.
Trendalyzer appears to not be available for general purpose use. It seems to be bundled along with world health, mortality and other developmental index data. It would be interesting to see its time dimension features incorporated into other BI visualization products like QlikView or Tableau.