Here’s another map I stumbled upon and loved, this week: Manhattan, as interpreted by Archie Archambault, a designer from Portland, Oregon.
My eye was drawn toВ the clean lines and the simplicity of the circles. Plus, he did a nice job calling out most NYC neighborhoods. (Though he could have included my own little ‘hood, Hudson Heights, in that blank spot between 180th and 190th, between the river and Broadway!)
New research indicates that GPS’s are hindering our ability to create mental maps of our surroundings. My maps aim to install a “Map from the Mind” for each city, simplifying structures and districts in the simplest terms. The circle, our Universe’s softest shape, is the clearest graphic to convey size & connection.
I got such a kick out of this Spotify project: Serendipity is a digital map that displays instances in which one song was played by two people, anywhere in the world, within one-tenths of a second.
The songs aren’t being played in real time. (That would be so much cooler.) But they were culled from a recent one-hour period, so it’s indicative of what’s happening around the world, at any given time.
Most songs are, not surprisingly, current pop hits: lots of Katy Perry, Ke$ha, Ariana Grande.
But there are also some throwbacks, like Radiohead’s “Paranoid Android” and Oasis’ “Champagne Supernova.”
I’ll admit, there have been times when I’ve clicked on a random song—usually some 80s or 90s jam I can’t get out of my head—and wondered whether anyone else in the world was also listening to the same thing, at the same time. Now I know that chances are, someone may have been.
Speaking of fernweh, fewer things stoke mine more than maps of the world. (Last week, I went to LA for work. I spent half of the 6.5 hour ride there zooming in on different places on the map on my seatback screen.)
Using data from ourairports.com, James Davenport,В a Ph.D. candidate in astronomy at the University of Washington, plotted the locations of 45,132 runways around the world. The result: a map of the world.В (I know it’s a little hard to see, so please click on the image to view the high res version.)
As Davenport puts it:
Think about that number for a moment: there areВ at leastВ 45,000 places to land an airplane!В These range from small dirt fields to LAX, and the data seems to be more complete in the USA. Still, runways on every continent, seemingly every country.
In the midst of all of this month’s craziness, I almost forgot that Easter is this weekend. Luckily, my family didn’t, so we’re getting together this afternoon for an early dinner. We’ll also be dyeing eggs for place settings—I’m excited for keeping that tradition and eating the eggs after!
I’m not a crafty person. My sewing skills are limited to stitching ribbons onto my pointe shoes—and even then, I’ve had to undo and resew every pair. But I love these DIY globe pillows, from saltlabs, so much that the idea of sewing them together seems really fun. (You know I’m a sucker for globes and maps!В ) I can see myself curling up with them on my sofa and thinking about where I want to go next!
In my office, there’s a “free shelf” where people can leave and take items. The other day, I found the best thing ever: an inflatable cloth globe covered with outlines of all the countries. I immediately took it back to my desk.
Apparently, it’s a Seedling Color the Earth ball meant for kids. I decided to make it my “Where I’ve Been” globe, so I colored in the countries I’ve visited—and was immediately humbled.
I have a lot of the world to see.
All of Africa and Antarctica are untouched. I’ve only been to a few countries in Europe—and not particularly huge ones, either (Iceland, the U.K., Norway and Denmark). Asia is pretty blank, save for China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Australia and most of Central America are pink. But I only have two countries blocked out in South America. And yes, it’s also kind of sad that I’ve never been across the border to Canada—not even to “bullshit Canada,” i.e. right by the Niagara Falls, even for a few minutes, as Peter asked me.
I know I’m lucky to have visited the places I’ve been to. But seeing how many more I’ve yet to experience just makes me want to pack my bag and head out on more trips.
Are you going anywhere exciting, soon? I could use some inspiration!
(And I did have a good time at the Grand Canyon, earlier this week. Photos and highlights to come!)