Over at Uncommon Descent, DaveScot notes that from 1995-1999, there was a sharp increase in scientific literacy according to this survey.
Various speculations are being tossed around as to the cause of it. DaveScot speculates that it may have been due to the increased availibility of internet access beginning around that time. User russ suggests that it may be the result of more channels with strong science programs like PBS and Discovery Channel. At Reasonable Kansas, FTK implicates Behe's book, Darwin's Black Box... which didn't come out till 1998.
Anyone else have any idea of big events that could have lead to this increase?
Regardless, we can be pretty certain that it has nothing to do with Intelligent Design like proponents would like to claim, given that ID didn't come on the scene in any major way until 1999 when it was first implemented in Kansas.