Mapping Out More than Land Mass

Cartographer Mark Newman's new book, 'The Atlas of the Real World', includes maps that show more than just 'how many acres there are in a country.' Malaria cases and health care spending per capita are among some of Newman's unconventional maps.

"'Maps can be misleading, absolutely," says Mark Newman of the University of Michigan, who is a co-author of the book The Atlas of the Real World: Mapping the Way We Live. "Your standard map of the world makes the North Pole look huge and the equator look very small. And we just accept it the way it is.'"

"Newman is perhaps best known for his electoral maps. Traditionally, the view is a virtual sea of red through the middle of the country, flanked by blue coasts. Looking at big red Montana, one may think it has much more influence than little blue New York – a third of Montana's size.

The reality is that New York has more than 10 times the number of electoral votes, because its population is so much bigger."

"Newman's new book takes this concept and applies it to the entire globe. On a map of car exports per capita, for example, Japan becomes gigantic - bigger than most continents - by virtue of its vast numbers of automobile exports."

Thanks to Franny Ritchie

Full Story: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=97338308&ft=1&f=2

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