The world has a critical need to see itself as one interconnected whole rather than disparate countries, cities, tribes, cultures, religions or special interests. Without this unitary view of intertwined fates, the parochial trumps the planetary, narrow self-interest bests enlightened self-interest, greed beats cooperation and generosity— and the world is endangered through short-term and near-sighted thinking and actions.
Any vehicle more complicated than a lawn mower needs a dashboard. The intertwined fate of
all life onboard "Spaceship Earth" creates a critical need for a tool similar in purpose and function
to a vehicle’s dashboard. The Earth Dashboard you are visiting is an alpha version of such a tool.
It is our experimental lab where we develop and try out new widgets and new indicators, or existing
indicators in new and older widgets, new indicators in differing formats, differing arrangements and
juxtapositions of indicators, and new arrangements of pages. We are or will also be experimenting
with the user interface, graphic design and features that will be added in the near future to the Earth
Dashboard (see below, Coming Attractions). Most of our work is on the level of coding, functionality of the
widgets and the “best” widget for displaying each indicator. One of our next steps is the re-design
of the site from a graphic design perspective. Your suggestions and help on any of the above and
below are welcome.
The Earth Dashboard is a project of EarthGame™ a non-profit tax-exempt research and education organization whose mission is to build the EarthGame and it's associated set of tools for global and local problem recognition, definition and solution. EarthGame, Inc. is located in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area of the United States and can be reached at 610.506.7176 or email@example.com. If you would like a brochure that describes the Earth Dashboard in more detail, you can download it here.
What you see on the current site is a small part of the vision and design for the Earth Dashboard. Additional features include over three-hundred more indicators of our planet’s well being, and additional display modalities. These will include new meters, a variety of gauges, thermometers and alarms, plus standardized world maps and charts. There will be real time news feeds, live web cam and satellite images of current disasters, as well as polls and voting functions. A goal-setiing functionality will also be included. All of this will help us meet one of our goals— to have a more accurate, understandable and real-time visualization of the state of the world.
User activities include the ability for you to make your own Earth Dashboard, to add "Zoom Levels"
and indicators, to vote on which of the large number of total indicators are the "key" indicators
(and thereby deserving to be located on the Earth Dashboard landing page), voting on various
goals and priorities (examples: What would you spend five hundred billion dollars on if that's all you
had to meet the basic human needs of 100% of humanity? Or, What do you think is the next crisis
coming towards humanity?), as well as the capability for you to determine what should be voted on.
In addition, there will be a series of local and global actions that you can take, and organizations working
in these areas, that are linked to each indicator. There will also be a series of information visualization
contests where you will be able to develop visualizations of critical problems confronting the world,
win prizes and have your work displayed on the Earth Dashboard site. There are also a series of
advanced widgets (like a correlation widget and a model generating widget), and single and multiplayer
games that are designed to use the Earth Dashboard as their user interface in the works.
This last item deserves a bit of elaboration. Dashboards play a critical role in a vehicle's navigation. They tell us what is happening in the present moment. If you want to see the past, look in the rearview mirror; that tells us where we have been. If you want to see the future, look out the windshield; that is where we are heading. One of the features of the Earth Dashboard will be a windshield/viewport that looks out to the future. There will be tools that enable the viewer to manipulate that future— to guide the vehicle in the direction his or her goals dictate. At the most primitive level, there will be a series of sliders attached to a series of indicators that will show what happens if certain trends continue or are accelerated into the future. The impact of these moves will be tied into a series of Indices that comprise the "Headings/Goals" level of the Earth Dashboard. There will be more advanced actions, games and strategic planning tools available as we move forward.
That's what is coming. As you can see there is a sizable gap between vision and where we are today. We could use you help (see below). The Earth Dashboard will be an exciting, understandable and beautiful medium that will allow the average person to get a fix on where the world is at, right now— and what they can do to participate in making it better.
Your feedback, suggestions, designs, data visualizations, financial contributions, and other resources are most welcome and needed. For further details on how you can get involved with the Earth Dashboard, contact Medard Gabel at firstname.lastname@example.org
This prototype Earth Dashboard site was made possible through the generosity of the
Elbaz Family Foundation, Nova Spivack, Joe S. Moore and others. In addition, a wide variety of people have helped in various ways to get the Earth Dashboard to its current state. These include:
Medard Gabel, Executive Director, EarthGame
Nova Spivack, Lucid Ventures
Gil Elbaz, Founder, Factual
Jeff Crewe, Exhibit Designer and Supervisor of Exhibits, Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic CT
John P. Dougherty, Computer Science, Haverford College
Keith Fraser, Visual Interaction Designer, Bresslergroup, Philadelphia, PA
Mary Gabel, GabelGraphics
Mia Hanak, Millennium Art, San Francisco, CA
David Heeney, President, IndEco, Toronto, Canada
Krista Imre, Bryn Mahr College
Wayne Jacoby, President, Global Education Motivators (GEM), Philadelphia, PA
Valerie M. Jones, President, Valerie M. Jones Associates, development, Philadelphia, PA
Karen Lau, laudesignlab, Los Angeles, CA
Maruyi Lu, Bryn Mahr College
Heather McAdams, University of Delaware
Parag Mankeekar, MD, Asoka Fellow, CEO, Neeti Solutions, Pune, India
Marco A. Ortega Moulin, MarkSoft Solutions, Cuernavaca, México
Philip H. Peterson, Chief Technology Officer, Unbound Medicine, Media, PA
Donovan Preddy, Graphic Design, Philadelphia, PA
Diana Post, founder and managing partner, TAP Consulting, Philadelphia, PA
Georgia Spangenberg, Interaction Designer, Digitas Health. Philadelphia, PA
Robert Steele, Earth Intelligence Network, Washington DC
John Stevic, Swarthmore College
Travis Threlkel, Obscura Digital, San Francesco, CA
Clifford Wagner, CEO, Science Interactives, Philadelphia, PA