2012 predictions

Everybody’s got one. A prediction about what the devil is going to happen during the winter solstice of 2012. That’s the end of the world, say some. Here we have a graphic, provided by InformationIsBeautiful.net, about various 2012 predictions and possible horrid scenarios. The most redeeming quality of this graphic in my opinion is that it shows both sides–that of the believers and the naysayers.

The believers generally fall into two camps: those who think the Earth’s population will collectively undergo a positive physical or spiritual transformation, and those who think civilization will be completely annihilated or, instead, transubstantiate into a living hell for all. Then you have the skeptics, who either believe that all 2012 doomsday theories are bollocks because they are completely made up or bollocks because quasi-scholars have misinterpreted the Mayan calendar and the beliefs of that highly intelligent civilization.

The believers have a number of varied theories, and I suppose some think they are mutually exclusive, while others believe they can overlap. Their theories range from geomagnetic reversal (extremely unlikely, according to scientists), pole shift (scientifically impossible), egregious solar storms that ravage the planet (if there are storms, they will do nothing more than disrupt cell phone signals), the earth passing through a “galactic plane” (kind of hard when there are none within 24 light years), a rogue planet smacking into the Earth (if this was going to happen, it’s the kind of thing astronomers would notice, and none are coming toward us), a great flood that will tear the planet to pieces (out of the blue, huh?), and a nuclear holocaust (at least this theory/prediction isn’t based on faulty science).

Many of ideas that believers hold onto are based on completely historically incorrect information. For instance, they think that the Aztecs and the Toltecs knew about 2012 and also believe something unusual is going to happen on that date. But this idea is completely made up, as there is no evidence to suggest that either civilization knew about the Mayans. Ok, have I torn the believers’ beliefs apart enough yet? Let’s move to the grading segment.

Design: B

This design isn’t winning many points in the creativity or “amazing use of colors” department. The overall design of the graphic is fine; the problem is that the creator choose to use a plain and boring color scheme. Color schemes should suck you in, not recede into the furniture.

Content: A-

An excellent research job by the graphic’s creators. The decision to show theories in one column and tear them apart in the other should please both skeptics and believers alike. And there is no shortage of theories and charts.

When I look at this graphic though, all I can think about is how much more enthralling it would be if more colors than the bland light brown shades were used. Maybe the creators could redo it with more colors, kind of like colorizing an old 1940’s film? Food for thought, as Sherlock Holmes would say. Oh, and while he never mentioned it, I’m fairly certain someone like Holmes would call the whole “2012 thing” bollocks.