Monday, September 19, 2005

Map Projections

Map Projections - Welcome

There is an endless variety of geographical maps for every kind of purpose. When looking at two different world maps one can wonder why the differences: do we draw the world as a rectangle, or an oval? Shouldn't it be a circle? Should grid lines be parallel, straight or curved? Does South America's "tail" bend eastwards or westwards? What's the "right" way (or, more properly, is there one?) to draw our unique planet?

One important concern of cartography is solving how to project, i.e. transform or map points from an almost spherical lump of rock (our Earth) onto either flat sheets of paper or not-so flat phosphorus-coated glass.

Here are informally described important cartographic concepts, how maps are drawn and why there are so many different kinds of projections for world maps. You may start reading here and follow the Click buttons like this one to go ahead buttons, or use this table of contents


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