Saturday, September 20, 2014

British sunset

Here's a little toy distributed by the Children’s Encyclopedia in Britain in the early twentieth century showing why the sun never sets on the British Empire.

Here's an excellent XKCD "What-if" post explaining when the sun will set on the British Empire.

And here's an old post from this blog showing different pre-WWII-era propaganda pieces each distorting the size of the British Empire in different ways.

Secession cartoon round up

There have, of course, been some editorial cartoons about Scottish secession.  here's a few.  Send in more!
153719 600 Scotland about to vote cartoons
153720 600 Highs and lows of the United Kingdom cartoons

153723 600 Camerons last battle cartoons

Friday, September 19, 2014

Together forever?

In the spirit of results of the momentous vote about secession for Scotland being published today, here's a map of countries (or "countries") created with secessionist votes:

And here's a map of what Europe might look like if all the other secessionist agitators got their way:

And here's a map of what the good ol' US of A might look like if all the secessionist groups in the US got their way... assuming, as is the case for most of them, that they merely want to secede from the other states to which they currently belong, not from the Union itself (as some seem to).  I like that it includes parts of what are currently northern Mexico.  I like that solution for the issues with the southern border security far better than any silly wall,  I also like the prospects of Puerto Rico, Guam, and even Cuba as states... but that smells of empire.  Is it empire if those places ask to join the Union (as Puerto Rico already has... or would that be "asking" like how Hawaii "asked" to join (not)).

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Pat Bagley Pulitzer?

Regular guest poster Amanda has provided this example of Pat Bagley's work which was featured in an article about how he's a finalist for this year's Pulitzer prize in editorial cartooning

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Monday, September 15, 2014

Sunday, September 14, 2014

British Insults

Here's a lesson on (mostly) non-vulgar British insults... with a very mappy backdrop. Thanks to my son I have far too many justified opportunities in my life to utilize the term "mardy".

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Friday, September 12, 2014

Stand Still Stay Silent by Minna Sundberg

Is it me or are we living in a golden age of webcomics?  Here's another debut-for-the-blog webcomic Stand Still Stay Silent by Minna Sundberg, who also did A Redtail's Dream.  SSSS virtually starts with a map, with a pandemic story to set up its post-apocalyptic setting for a band of youth to have adventures.  Looks like a lot of fun!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Mormons on the move

This pictorial map, printed in 1899, commemorates the 1846-47 route of émigrés from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, as they made their way from Illinois to Utah. It's not to scale, exaggerating some locations/events that were considered to be of greater importance. Click to see it in more detail.  More info here.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Geography lesson... FROM SPACE!

Here's the crew of the ISS helpfully pointing out geographical features as they pass over on one of their dozen-or-so daily orbits:

Monday, September 8, 2014

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Dr. Seuss Changed the World

Comic artist Denis Kitchen illustrated the Dr. Seuss section of Masterful Marks: Cartoonists Who Changed the World Monte Beauchamp, editor.  Here are some map-related excerpts.  More here.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Global electronic warfare

My friend Mary alerted me to this mesmerizing real-time map of worldwide cyber attacks by bad actors, It was created by computer security company NorseViking and shows attacks on honeypots, or computers designed to be targets of such malicious attacks.

Alternatively, there's this even more interactive map of real-time cyber threats that rely not on honeybot traps but actual attacks by Kaspersky Lab. Kaspersky real time cyber threat map

Keep in mind that, while fascinating, both of these maps may be merely nifty marketing schemes to get you to buy their security products. On the other hand, they are fascinating and quite believable.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

XKCD book launch

xkcd's Randall Munroe is doing a book launch for his book based on his brilliant "What if?" crazy science explanations blog. So of course he hid a globe in the day's comic.

The "title-text" at the actual webcomic says (for obvious reasons you'll understand when you see the comic):
It's turtles all the way down

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Tracy Annie crossover

Zombie-comic Dick Tracy is doing a crossover with Annie (good grief, how can either comic still be running?) and they just got a big clue as to the location of the missing titular characters who are trapped on some time-warp island ... Is the senseless plotline worth the months it will take to follow it to its lackluster resolution?  

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Not creepy at all

Here's a map-ish animated GIF from Hayden Zezula, designer and animator. This is just about the only one from this set that isn't nightmarishly creepy.tumblr_n7wqlvIY9B1qg4441o1_500

Sunday, August 31, 2014

International geographical trolling

So Canada's NATO Twitter account tweeted this:

To which the Russians tweeted this response:
This is surely a positive development in international relations.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Want to spend some time being creeped out by disturbing LP album covers?  Head over to for gems like this:

Friday, August 29, 2014

Vintage jacket

I'm pretty sure it doesn't have South Sudan on it either. On the other hand, if Putin keeps up his antics, if this guy wears it long enough maybe it will become more accurate.
Now That's a Vintage Jacket

Thursday, August 28, 2014

You don't just paint over Mordor

I think there's something slightly criminal about having to paint over something this thoroughly awesome.  I would think the landlord would want it left there... give them their deposit back and then charge the next tenants extra for the privilege of living with something so precious, I would.
All Good Journeys Must Come to the End

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Muppet Wizard of Id

Did you know that Jim Hensen once did a pilot for a Muppet-esque take on the Wizard of Id?  It featured a map joke:

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


My wife found this rack of novelty gums in a candy shop on the Oregon coast a few months ago.  I've only now gotten to posting it:

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hot and Cold (guest post)

Hello! Guest contributor Amanda Murphyao here with a map of the world:

(Image links to source.)

Sunday, August 24, 2014

World History: The Comic

Blog friend Amanda has found a page from World History: The Comic by Zak Ziebell. This one is about the Byzantine empire.  There's much more to be found there.
Some pages from the Byzantines chapter I’ve been working for awhile on.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

4-dimensional map of California drought

This is an insanely innovative map.  And timely.  As if any other evidence was even need to prove xkcd's Randall Munroe is a cartographic genius.

The "title-text" at the actual webcomic says:
58% of the state has gone into plaid


Friday, August 22, 2014

Face tracking

This one is a bit more off-the-beaten-path cartographically speaking, but it is a legitimate form of mapping and projection.  An article explaining the project by Nobumichi Asai is here, but it's in Japanese:

OMOTE / REAL-TIME FACE TRACKING & PROJECTION MAPPING. from something wonderful on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Look, I know we've done a bit of a rash of this sort of thing, but I swear it's not intentional.  Article
phallus shaped map of Berkhamstead

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


ArchDaily reports that Danish architecture firm BIG has come up with Zootopia, an innovative plan to reimagine the 1960s-era Givskud Zoo in Denmark that would create a cage-free, design-forward layout for captive animals and the humans who love to gawk at them.  The centerpiece of the zoo has an interesting theme:140731_EYE_1

Monday, August 18, 2014

Snake fight (guest post)

Hello! Guest contributor Amanda Murphyao here with another globe cartoon:
(Image links to source.)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Blind map

In the 1830s, Samuel Gridley Howe developed an embossed alphabet known as Boston Line Type. This atlas, printed in 1837, made use of this type to present geographical information for students at the New England Institution for Education of the Blind  Scans of the rest of Howe’s atlas can be seen on the David Rumsey Map Collection website:

New Hampshire

Friday, August 15, 2014

Worst. Hurricane. Ever.

Randall Munroe's xkcd: Producing a mind-puddlingly wonderful map-based webcomic about once per month so as to make the world a better place. The "title-text" at the actual webcomic says:

'Finding a 105-year-old who's lived in each location and asking them which hurricane they think was the worst' is left as an exercise for the reader.

Thursday, August 14, 2014