Maps are super deceiving. It’s rather hard to represent a plane without a bit of distortion with the surface of the earth being spherical.
Scientists have been developing algorithms to follow in order to help them to transform the globe into something flat to work from since the 1500’s. This is called as projection.
Even though the projection coming such a long way, some figures have become distorted depending on how the map is laid out and for what purpose it is intended.
Map markers which are constantly being juggled, with most looking at the Mercator projection for clarity is made up of area, shape, direction, bearing, distance and scale.
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The Mercator projection has the ability to represent lines quite accurately, so it is widely used for navigation. A line is drawn between two points on a map, and it’s providing an exact angle for a compass to follow, and then it’s preserving the shape of a country.
As the scale becomes distorted it’s less practical for world maps. Here’s a series of maps which overlap, showing countries from all parts of the world placed over the United States to better display the size comparisons by Imgurian and map lover Mkyner.
Cylindrical projection has used to make the most popular maps, which essentially stems from this: Imagine placing a cylinder over a globe and projecting the surface of the globe onto the cylindrical surface, leaving you with a flat, rectangular map.
The Mercator projection was created by Flemish geographer and cartographer Gerardus Mercator in 1569. He preserved his map by means of varying the distances between the latitude lines and making them straight. As with every map, here are drawbacks too. Take Greenland and Africa as an example, they look the same size, but Greenland is in fact 14 times smaller.
Map services such as Google Maps still work on the Mercator projection system. With minimal distortion you can see close-up views of cities and roads. However, a Gall-Peters projection is the best if you want a map that shows the true size of things.
Mkyner told Bored Panda, “I’ve liked maps for as long as I can remember, I enjoy exploring distant places on Google Earth, I think it’s important to have an understanding of the countries we hear about in the news, and I love sharing this interest with others (as I think many people do with their hobbies/passions).”
“I was looking up maps of South Africa yesterday (19 May 2019) when I came across the first comparison map. That quickly led to the CIA World Fact Book (a US government source). I was trying to procrastinate on some chores, so compiling those maps into a post seemed like a perfect idea.”
“Note, I did not include every country in the post,” they added. “I skipped Canada and Mexico, since they were on a lot of the maps anyway, and some of the smaller/more obscure countries (think Togo and Kyrgyzstan).”