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De Islanda Insvla

Íslandskort is a digital collection of historical maps of Iceland put online in high quality pdf-files and jpegs by the National Library of Iceland. Here are a few of my favorites: 1, 2, 3. You can either browse a timeline of all the maps or browse categories such as first maps of Iceland, Iceland on sea charts in the 17th and 18th centuries and other maps, which includes maps of Frisland (1, 2), a phantom island that bedeviled cartographers for centuries.
posted by Kattullus on Aug 12, 2014 - 3 comments

15 Maps That Don't Explain the Middle East at All

Violent upheaval in the Middle East has recently spawned all manner of maps purporting to explain how the region got this way. Here, instead, are 15 maps that don’t claim as much. Or rather, they do not seek, like many other maps, to capture some fixed set of core facts about the region. Instead, these maps provide a more fluid perspective on the Middle East, often by showing what didn’t happen as opposed to what did. But for all these maps don’t show, they do illustrate one thing: the sobering fact that no one map—or even set of maps—can ever explain the region’s complex history and politics.
posted by whyareyouatriangle on Aug 8, 2014 - 13 comments

ORBIS TERRARUM

In 1909, American architect and cartographer Bernerd J.S. Cahill published An Account Of A New Land Map Of The World (and at The Internet Archive), in which he described a novel way of projecting a map. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 18, 2014 - 5 comments

Canonical Comical Cartography; or, The Batcave is in New Jersey

The Cartographer Who Mapped Out Gotham City from Smithsonian Magazine. A look at a real-life map of a fictional city. Illustrator Eliot Brown "didn’t just design the city; he designed an implicit history that writers are still exploring."
posted by HonoriaGlossop on Jun 9, 2014 - 39 comments

Sphere Factory

Spherical Voronoi diagram of world airports [more inside]
posted by Wolfdog on May 8, 2014 - 42 comments

40 Maps of the Middle East

Forty maps that explain the Middle East. Includes sections on Middle East history, the region today, Israel-Palestine, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and oil, Iraq and Libya, and "points of light." [more inside]
posted by Halloween Jack on May 6, 2014 - 8 comments

Nobody lives here.

Nik Freeman has created a map, based on census data, to illustrate the 47% of the United States where nobody lives.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Apr 21, 2014 - 113 comments

Terrabyte Incognita

Africa Might Not Look Like You Think It Does
There is no such thing as an objective map. This was true of cave paintings, Roman tapestries, and colonialists' charts of Africa. It is also true of Google Maps.

posted by infini on Apr 2, 2014 - 58 comments

The NYPL's Open Maps Project adds 20,000 High Res Maps

The New York Public Library has released more than 20,000 high resolution cartographic works (maps!) for free, to view and download. "We believe these maps have no known US copyright restrictions." All can be viewed through the New York Public Library’s Digital Collections page and downloaded through their Map Warper. (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 31, 2014 - 11 comments

A cartographic history of why North, not East or South, is up

How the north ended up on top of the map is an article by Nick Danforth, author/curator of (The/Mid) Afternoon Map blog, detailing how the north-up orientation came to be the default orientation, looking beyond Eurocentrism to Byzantine monks and Majorcan Jews who set the path for modern cartography. If you want more information, you might enjoy the Wikipedia article on the history of cartography, or you can really dig deep with the three-volume text, The History of Cartography, which is available in full from the University of Chicago Press online, split into individual PDFs for each chapter. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Feb 18, 2014 - 28 comments

mapschool

mapschool [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola on Feb 4, 2014 - 15 comments

What four commonly used projections do, as shown on a human head

Maps can help make sense of the world, but they can also distory your sense of reality (Archive.org stream view, page 58 of Elements of Map Projection with Applications to Map and Chart Construction). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 13, 2014 - 26 comments

A spectacular historical atlas refashioned for the 21st century

Here you will find one of the greatest historical atlases: Charles O. Paullin and John K. Wright's Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States, first published in 1932. This digital edition reproduces all of the atlas's nearly 700 maps. Many of these beautiful maps are enhanced here in ways impossible in print, animated to show change over time or made clickable to view the underlying data—remarkable maps produced eight decades ago with the functionality of the twenty-first century.
posted by cthuljew on Dec 28, 2013 - 8 comments

Westeros and beyond

Jonathan Roberts is a fantasy mapmaker, who produced the maps for the official Game of Thrones atlas. He talks about mapmaking to Wired here. He also has a website with lots of nifty maps, as well as tips on making your own.
posted by Chrysostom on Dec 3, 2013 - 22 comments

Places Are Made Of A Thousand Stories

"I want to see the world. Follow a map to its edges, and keep going. Forgo the plans. Trust my instincts. Let curiosity be my guide.
I want to change hemispheres and sleep with unfamiliar stars and let the journey unfold before me."

Maptia is on a mission to gather first-person stories from travelers, "to create the most inspirational map in the world." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Nov 12, 2013 - 3 comments

Cartographic mash-ups

Tubism combines the London Tube (or metro map of choice) with any imaginable topic: wine, LGBT celebrities, or songs about Paris. "Tubists may create aesthetic experiences, but presenting information in unexpected ways is usually a higher priority."
posted by spamandkimchi on Oct 28, 2013 - 7 comments

A world of equal districts

World map divided into 665 equally populated districts
posted by allen.spaulding on Sep 16, 2013 - 64 comments

Be sure to zoom out....

Buildings in the Netherlands by year of construction is a map worth getting lost in.
posted by oulipian on Sep 1, 2013 - 19 comments

Mapping the Midwest

How do you define the Midwest? As part of their exhibit Reinvention in the Urban Midwest (in most-certainly-not-in-the-Midwest Boston) Sasaki has created an online tool for people to contribute what the boundaries of the Midwest are for them. Results can be sorted by respondents' percentage of time spent in the Midwest and state of birth. An Atlantic Cities article shows one writer's opinion, and also links to Bill Rankin's similar Midwest mapping project on his always-excellent Radical Cartography site. An excerpt from The Midwest: God's Gift to Planet Earth has a more irreverent take on mapping the region.
posted by andrewesque on Jul 24, 2013 - 190 comments

The Corporate States of America

Steve Lovelace created a map that shows the corporation that best represents each state of the US.
posted by reenum on Jun 30, 2013 - 96 comments

The Moon Doesn't Have A Bed, Bath and Beyond... Yet

Samuel Aston Williams shows maps of the spread of urban sprawl in several American and international cities over 30 years, as seen from space.
posted by reenum on Jun 25, 2013 - 36 comments

Subjective Cartography

If New York Were A Blank Slate, How Would You Fill It In? is a piece on Becky Cooper's book Mapping Manhattan: A Love (and Sometimes Hate) Story in Maps by 75 New Yorkers both famous and not. Cooper's Map Your Memories tumblr. Found from Brain Pickings, which has much more. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jun 19, 2013 - 6 comments

3-D Mappa Mundi

Mapping The Newest Old Map Of The World: A full-sized, 3D plaster relief facsimile of the Hereford Mappa Mundi, the largest surviving medieval map of the world (Previously).
posted by homunculus on Jun 18, 2013 - 7 comments

Google Maps, Now Customized

For years, Google Maps has been the map of our world in a historically unprecedented way. The new Google Maps (announcement) will eschew the uniformity of the old Maps and instead customize the map experience based on a user's behavior. Some are concerned how this artificial narrowing will affect the way we experience places and relate to our urban spaces. Others believe the customization makes the new maps more honest. Most, however, will probably just want to comment on the huge overhaul to the interface.
posted by Defenestrator on May 29, 2013 - 104 comments

The Poetics & Politics of Picturing the World

The atlas is more than a cartographic genre. It is a way of thinking, of ordering, and experiencing the world... In the age of Google Earth, this online exhibition of maps from the 16th to 20th centuries is meant to stir public interest in the history of the atlas and cartography.
posted by spamandkimchi on May 18, 2013 - 13 comments

Cameras, Cartography and Competition

PITCHF/x and SportVU data analysis shows... [more inside]
posted by Groundhog Week on May 18, 2013 - 7 comments

The Cartography of Bullshit

On the 15 May, Max Fisher of the Washington Post penned an article titled A fascinating map of the world’s most and least racially tolerant countries. Fisher surmised that Anglo and Latin American countries are the most tolerant, linking racism to economic freedom based off of a study by two Swedish economists. Siddhartha Mitter responds, who, in The Cartography of Bullshit writes, "Although the results don’t pass the sniff test in the first place, I took a look at the data as well, in an effort to identify the exact problems at play..." [more inside]
posted by whyareyouatriangle on May 18, 2013 - 32 comments

Heinrich Berann, the father of the modern cartographic panorama

Heinrich Caesar Berann is known as the father of the modern cartographic panorama and is also credited as the most prolific panorama artist ever. His style and work could be credited with the lasting appeal of stylized panoramic maps that often feature exaggerated or distorted features as the preferred map type for ski resorts and trails (PDF) but Berann's true passion was art, as seen in these collections of his paintings and drawings found on the tribute site maintained by his grandson, Matthias Troyer. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 2, 2013 - 6 comments

Maps of global telecommunications

telegeography.com has a nice gallery of zoomable maps of global telecommunications and IT infrastructure, such as submarine cables (1 2), and internet backbones.
posted by carter on Jan 31, 2013 - 9 comments

Octopus Maps

Need quick visual shorthand for an aggressively encroaching political entity? You want an Cartographic Land Octopus! It's a subcategory of satirical maps. More octopus maps here, here, here.
posted by Miko on Jan 23, 2013 - 9 comments

The Force will guide you

The Original Star Wars Trilogy as Maps
posted by dry white toast on Jan 3, 2013 - 28 comments

That doesn't look right!

Remember that big Red/Blue map that you kept looking at on election night? That graphic was really pretty deceptive, and maps were mentioned 117 times in our huge election thread, often because they didn't make sense or were confusing. Mark Newman, Department of Physics and Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan, has created a neat page that represents the data from last Tuesday in a more visually accurate manner. [more inside]
posted by HuronBob on Nov 10, 2012 - 96 comments

What was the weather like on a certain day in April, 1891?

USF's collection of maps of America. Includes killing frost dates from 1911, Hog production circa 1860, 1900, Paths of Western Exploration and many more.
posted by Grandysaur on Oct 21, 2012 - 7 comments

Playin' in a Travelin' Band

Springsteen in the USA: 40 years of Touring as a Study in Spatial Diffusion "As a geographer, 1500+ shows over 40 years is an opportunity to map...how phenomenons such as innovation, fashion, or disease spread geographically. Except in this case the contagion is rock ‘n roll."
posted by Miko on Sep 13, 2012 - 21 comments

TF5-4523: The Mapmaking Process

Attention all GIS afficionados and fans of old-school maps! Report for duty and watch the U.S. Army's 1973 half-hour training film TF5-4523 in order to educate yourself in the process of cartography: part 1, part 2, part 3. The videos cover everything from surveying to printing, and all the steps in-between.
posted by barnacles on Aug 30, 2012 - 9 comments

The effects of modern mapping

How Google and Apple's digital mapping is mapping us "Digital maps on smartphones are brilliantly useful tools, but what sort of information do they gather about us – and how do they shape the way we look at the world?"
posted by peacay on Aug 29, 2012 - 44 comments

I Didn't Want To But I Did

[Denis Wood wrote] a crazy dissertation. It’s about maps, mental maps, getting kicked off a bus, psychogeography, single element veridicality analysis, Europe, cartography, Kevin Lynch, passed-out subjects, Peter Gould, psychogeomorphology, the Shirelles, and the invention of “Environmental a” – a language for mapping. Among other things. It is driving the wrong way down the one-way-street of academia.
posted by barnacles on Jun 18, 2012 - 21 comments

"I want to marry a lighthouse keeper..."

The strange story of Market Island
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Apr 25, 2012 - 19 comments

Fantastic Maps

Jonathan Roberts does Fantastic Maps. Whether you're looking for tutorials for tabletop RPG mapmaking, or just want to check out the designs of a professional fantasy cartographer, the only place to go is Fantastic Maps. And if you're a GRR Martin fan, you'll soon be more familiar with Roberts' name, since he has been picked to do the cartography for the October 2012 atlas of the lands of A Song of Ice and Fire.
posted by barnacles on Apr 7, 2012 - 10 comments

19th Century Maps Drawn By Children

The David Rumsey Map Collection presents 19th-century maps, drawn by children. Relics of an approach to the teaching of geography through the copying of existing maps and atlases, many of these maps are stunning in their detail and elegance--though not always in their accuracy. Also, I'll be damned if one of the teachers mentioned didn't create something that looks an awful lot like an infographic. [Via]
posted by Rykey on Apr 1, 2012 - 22 comments

"This monster of a land, this mightiest of nations, this spawn of the future, turns out to be the macrocosm of microcosm me." ~ John Steinbeck

Language of the Land: Journeys into Literary America: The inspiration for this exhibition was the Library of Congress's collection of literary maps--maps that acknowledge the contributions of authors to a specific state or region as well as those that depict the geographical locations in works of fiction or fantasy. Throughout the exhibition, these colorful and varied maps reflect the contributions of authors to specific states or regions and locate their imagined people and places. Through these maps, authors' words, images, and characters, Language of the Land presents a tapestry of the impressions that endure in our collective imagination of the American land and its culture. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Mar 31, 2012 - 4 comments

The Drinkers Guide to New York

If you're celebrating St. Patrick's Day or March Madness in New York, the State Liquor Authority can help plan your festivities with this handy guide to every establishment in the state of New York licensed to sell alcohol. [more inside]
posted by cedar on Mar 11, 2012 - 8 comments

Cartoo

Cartoo uses Google Maps to show you how far you could get by car, bike, or foot in a set amount of time.
posted by Paragon on Mar 8, 2012 - 38 comments

Yiwarra Kuju / One Road

Running nearly 2000 kilometres through Western Australia, the Canning Stock Route is the longest stock route in the world. And since 2006, Indigenous Australians from WA's Mid-West, Pilbara, and Kimberley region have been sharing their stories about this region through the Canning Stock Route Project. [more inside]
posted by barnacles on Jan 31, 2012 - 14 comments

Come up to my loft, I'll show you my cartographs.

Maps! Maps are great. And Cartophile is a pretty great blog about maps, courtesy our own desjardins, via mefi projects.
posted by cortex on Jan 24, 2012 - 20 comments

"You need have no fear of any failure" -- the life and explorations of Percy Fawcett

The London Geographical Journal, the preeminent publication in its field, observed in 1953 that “Fawcett marked the end of an age. One might almost call him the last of the individualist explorers. The day of the aeroplane, the radio, the organized and heavily financed modern expedition had not arrived. With him, it was the heroic story of a man against the forest.” Fawcett was none other than Percival "Percy" Harrison Fawcett, British soldier, trained as a surveyor of unknown lands, doubling as a British spy. But his true love was exploration, and not simply to mark boundaries on a map. His final goal was the same that had been the demise of many explorers: a mighty lost civilization in South America. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 29, 2011 - 6 comments

Beautiful maps of New York City, from the 1600s to present

The Streets of New York : a cartographical exploration. Part II - 19th Century Expansion and Part III - The Three Dimensional Maps (a must see for the last picture, a scale model with 895,000 structures). More amazing pictures of the Panorama of the City of New York
posted by desjardins on Dec 19, 2011 - 8 comments

Mapping with time rather than distance.

Time Maps maps the Netherlands based on how long it takes to reach a given destination rather than how far away it is.
We can reach almost any destination by train easily and relatively quick. In our busy lives we now think in time rather than distance[...]From the perspective of Eindhoven, for instance, the Netherlands is relatively small because of the quick and easy connections to other cities. At the same time, seen from a more remote and small village such as Stavoren the Netherlands is much bigger[...]At night the map will expand because there are no night trains and in the morning it will shrink once trains will commence their schedules. Here is a video demonstration.
posted by OmieWise on Nov 17, 2011 - 28 comments

What Are These Mysterious Lines In China's Desert?

Some Google Earth enthusiasts have found a strange and unexplainable grid pattern in the middle of China's Gobi Desert.
posted by reenum on Nov 14, 2011 - 70 comments

An MBTA Business Day

What does a day's worth of activity look like for Boston's transportation system? Via bostonography, which has been featured previously.
posted by Eideteker on Nov 8, 2011 - 26 comments

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