Maps and Conventions…

I was watching this TED video on youtube

And it got me thinking about the assets we want for maps. A map is essentially a summary of information to guide you, to show data in a certain way, to portrait places. A map is scaled, mainly because if it wasn’t, there was no need for a map, because it would be just as big as the thing it is representing, so you are better off with reality itself. This also necessarily means it will omit  some information, so a map designer should be aware of the purpose of the map drawing on the first place, so that he can determine which information is essential and which isn’t. A touristic map will essentially be different than a demographics map. ((I got Paris as an example, but it could be anywhere))

                      

When we think of maps, we are also frequently thinking in conventional methods. We are used to have North up, and we are used to having the Equator line in the Middle, American continent of the left hand side of the map. Something like this:

Truth is, conventions make easier for us to locate things in our head when referring to one place or another, but we shall never forget a map is just a map, a way chosen to portrait reality, information, data, and it is not always accurate, and lack a lot of information.

In actual scale, this is more likely to be the world we live in: