Atlas reinvented

Atlas Reinvented

Visiting friends recently and their kids had this fun blow up globe that serves as a beach ball and a geography primer. The photo opportunity was too sweet to miss as it reminded me of the famous sculpture of Atlas.

“In Greek mythology, Atlas was a Titan condemned to hold up the celestial heavens for eternity after the Titanomachy. Atlas also plays a role in the myths of two of the greatest Greek heroes: Heracles (the Roman equivalent being Hercules) and Perseus.”

After we finished playing with the globe beach ball we sat down with a big old fashioned paper atlas and tried to work out how and why the globe got stretched and squashed when it was printed on paper – projections for 5 and 8 year olds (and a 68 year old who still struggles with this stuff).

Mapquest Cow

Mapquest Cow

Roger Payne sent us this Map Cow

“After your request for maps in the wild at Geomob here’s one. It’s an old photo from 2000 I had to scan from a print.
It was part of Cow Parade in New York, and happened to be the first Cow I came across, found a few more in the City but none others with maps. “

Here’s another map on a cow from the same event, this time it’s global coverage. A prize for the person who comes up with the best name for the projection of this one.

Well played Mapquest. I doubt we will see many more maps on cows but who knows?

Frau Mauro’s upside down world

Looking south

Alex Wrottesley of Geovation sent me this beautiful 15th century world map that he came across in Florence

Fra’ Mauro, a Camaldolese monk, was active in Venice toward the mid-fifteenth century. His world map depicts the image of the Earth prevailing before the discovery of America. Based on literary texts that conveyed the geographic information then available, the original map is now in the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana of Venice.

Spotted at the the Museo Galileo in Florence where they display a full-scale facsimile.”

I like the idea of a south orientated map, it challenges my presumptions about maps, geography and the world order.

If you want to learn a bit more about this map have a look here