What would a map look like if what mattered weren't borders, but what was actually happening with people and their activities on the ground? Take a look.
Worldmapper is a mapping program that keeps areas (such as countries or cities) in roughly the same map locations as on a traditional map, while changing their relative sizes to reflect the value of a variable, such as, for example, population, wealth, public health spending, Tweets produced, etc. Such a world map (or cartogram) of population, for example, shows China and India as larger than their land area size, and Australia as smaller. Another way of explaining this concept is to visualize blowing air into a balloon. As the balloon expands, it grows and dwarfs anything around it that isn't growing at the same rate. Now, let's apply that concept to the world we live in. You won't believe what such maps look like!
Worldmapper - This is the main maps page on the Worldmapper website. Click on the link and, when the new page opens, use the category list along the left side of the page to drill down into the maps exploring different issues.
All of the map images in today's post are live links to the Worldmapper site where those maps exist. So, click on any of the maps in today's post to go to that map. Then, click again on the map and the details for that map open up.
The Human Planet - In the map directly above, the four traditional physical hemispheres, dividing the world into north, south, east, and west, become almost irrelevant and are replaced by a new division based on population. The population center of this new view of the world is situated on top of a mountain near the city of Udaipur, India. That point, displayed at the map’s center, stands symbolic for the effects of recent demographic changes in the world population. The global population center is gradually shifting from the currently most populated region in Asia towards a rapidly growing African continent, which pushes the significance of Europe and the Americas literally towards the edges of the map.
Countries: Gridded Population Maps - This set of maps illustrates the stunning growth of cities as factors in a nation's life. Click the link to find the entire set of gridded population maps for 190 countries.