Any student of geography knows that maps are a key to not only geography, but are also a major source of insight into the cartographer and the society that created those maps. Maps have created the perceptions of how we see the world around us; maps have informed cultures, motivated explorers, and caused disputes that have led to wars.
The way maps are depicted have been used as a political tool and a way of controlling populations. Cartographers have struggled with the reality of putting a three dimensional object, the Earth, onto a two dimensional surface, like a map. This process creates distortions in the map which obscures the real dimensions of continents and landmasses in relation to one another.
We are used to seeing the world depicted in a certain way since many of the more common place maps are based on the Mercator projection. We are used to Greenland being larger on the map than it actually is; we are used to Africa being smaller than it actually is. Even if we don’t notice how the maps have informed our perception of the world, they have. Different map projections have improved on one another, but all have their pros and cons when it comes to sacrificing certain dimensions over others.
This new map, called the AuthaGraph, may be the most accurate map projection created to date. The AuthaGraph may look much different than other map projections, and it is. This is an original mapping method that can transfer a spherical surface to a rectangular surface while keeping proportions correct. The AuthaGraph projection has included Antarctica, which is often left out of other map projections.
Japanese artist and architect Hajime Narukawa created the AuthaGraph map. Although it isn’t the best for navigation, as north isn’t in the standard top of the map, it is one of the most proportional maps available today. The AuthaGraph won the Good Design Award for its revolutionary and innovative cartography style.
- Types of Map Projections
- Cartographic Anomalies: How Map Projections Have Shaped Our Perceptions of the World