I am excited to announce the release of StatPlanet 3.0 today. Many of the improvements are the result of your feedback. I would like to thank all of you who have helped improve StatPlanet through your useful e-mails and forum posts.

What's new?

The biggest change visually is the improved, simplified and more streamlined interface. The bar charts and options in the indicators panel are now a customizable feature and hidden by default. There is now an optional start-up help screen with customizable text, for new users of StatPlanet. And there are many other new customization settings to tweak the interface to your liking, including resizing of various components. For a demo of some of these new features, see World Stats, and for a more complete list of updates, see the StatPlanet 3.0 release notes.

One of the most exciting new developments for StatPlanet Plus is the ability to link directly to indicators, and auto-generate a table of contents linking to all the maps. For an example, see StatWorld’s directory of 400+ links to interactive maps. Managing large data sets is now possible by splitting them into multiple files, and the Data Editor has a new tool for automating the process of creating these. And to complete the process of turning StatPlanet Plus into a data visualization powerhouse, there is now a google-like search button to easily find indicators within StatPlanet.

Additional new StatPlanet Plus features include:

- Add target lines (benchmarks) to graphs, with custom colors and labels
- Improved support for shapefile maps
- Embed an exernal logo or image
New add-on modules

Updating from a previous version

StatPlanet 3.0 is fully compatible with StatPlanet 2.x data files. Moreover, upgrading the data files to 3.0 can now be automated through an Excel macro (see the “readme” included with StatPlanet for more details).

What's next?

Now that version 3 has been released, the next version is already under development. There are many new features in the pipeline, but priority will be given to providing greater flexibility in data input, including XML, as this is one of the most requested features. Continuing to optimize StatSilk software for mobile devices and tablets will also be a priority. StatSilk will continue to innovate and push the boundaries of web-based interactive mapping and visualization, so expect to see many more features soon!