Maps lie: countries that fit inside other countries


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Map Projection Transitions is a fun plaything (the animation is annoying, I like it best paused while dragging around the center of a projection).

Maps lie: countries that fit inside other countries...The tininess of Britain against Japan, for example, or the vastness of Alaska against France
One of those things is not like the others / One of those things just doesn't belong / Can you tell which thing is not like the others / by the time I finish my song?


Didn’t get linked here before?




It’s Britain. Japan, France, and Alaska are actual political units with their own laws and legislatures. Britain is just a geographical name for the island that has England, Scotland, and Wales on it.


There is a basic problem with this video. While it is true that regions near poles look much bigger in Mercator Projection than they are in reality, the comparisons are still being made in the video on a flat Mercator Projection, which is not the reality. Reality is the globe, not the projection of it. The video itself is always a projection, but a spinning 3D animation of the globe is still better than a flat, static and therefore distorted projection.
For example, around 4:39, Groenlandia is compared to Australia, South America and North America, first, making it much smaller (this is true because it is near North Pole and therefore it should so) but then is is moved unresized to be compared to those other regions which themselves should, in turn, be resized as well to make a fair comparison rather than on a flat Mercator projection.
So the basic idea is true, but the visual explanation is full of mistakes; it should have been made on a 3D globe to get a more proportional idea.


Today I learned that my estimates of size are accurate for everything that’s not far north. Sweden honestly threw me. Everything else is about as big as I expected it to be.

Childhood spent with Objectively Better­™ Winkel Tripel maps? Maybe. :slight_smile:


I found the size of Antarctica intimidating, fortunately it is getting rapidly smaller.


2 more things…of course Wyoming ISN"T actually square…The Northern and southern boundaries are long gradual curves. The other thing that would be useful is to discuss WHY the Mercader projection IS useful. If you want to go from point A to point B and do it by simply traveling on a single bearing that is easy because the bearing(s) that connect the two places are the SAME bearing on the map.


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