Tales of Topographic Notions (II)
In which some feathers may get ruffled, politely
It’s a wonderful world, then…
.. and one appreciated by many more than just the Chaps. Well, when we say “appreciated”…
But, although fascinating, it becomes a little tricky putting it on paper. Visually, that is. Not that there have not been attempts, with Mercator’s Projection probably the best known. But Mercator is problematic – not perhaps to 16th century European colonials, happy to see England in its rightful and dominant size and place, but …
It’s been widely used for centuries, including today in various forms by Google Maps and many other online services. This map preserves directional bearing, presenting rhumbs (imaginary lines that cut all meridians at the same angle) as straight lines, thus making it a useful tool for navigation. Despite its benefits, the Mercator projection drastically distorts the size and shape of objects approaching the poles. This may be the reason people have no idea how big some places really are
Tissot’s indicatrix, a geometric equation used to show distortion on maps, explains the problems with Mercator – Business Insider But all the other attempts look horribly distorted too, and at least we’re used to Mercator. Even if it does make Greenland look the size of Africa, for example. (You could fit 14 Greenlands in the real Africa.) But now enter Tokyo-based architect and artist Hajime Narukawa and his AuthaGraph map. Quite fascinating. It seems if you take the sphere of the earth and project it onto an inflated tetra… Or to look at it another way, if you flatten the earth’s 96… Well, here’s the diagram. Simple, yes? Until you see the product, which you may find – odd. But very accurate, insists Narukawa, who is a man on a mission.
According to Narukawa, his map means a lot more than just a faithful cartographical representation of our planet. Because Earth is now facing down issues like climate change and contentious territorial sea claims, Narukawa believes that the planet needs to look at itself in a new light — a view that perceives the interests of our planet first and its countries second.
The Chaps could not say fairer than that.
No we couldn’t - and lest you think the chaps are out there on yet another meaningless tangent - know that the Boston Public School system are already on the ‘abandon Mercator trajectory’ … now we just need to pop over there and let them know about Narukawa san … this is new.