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Old 06-02-2016, 12:03 PM   #1
A.T. Hagan
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Default The Greatest Paper Map of the United States You値l Ever See

http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/c...kwp_1 =338295


Imus map of the United States.

Quote:
American mapmaking’s most prestigious honor is the “Best of Show” award at the annual competition of the Cartography and Geographic Information Society. The five most recent winners were all maps designed by large, well-known institutions: National Geographic (three times), the Central Intelligence Agency Cartography Center, and the U.S. Census Bureau. But earlier this year, the 38th annual Best of Show award went to a map created by Imus Geographics—which is basically one dude named David Imus working in a farmhouse outside Eugene, Ore.

At first glance, Imus’ “The Essential Geography of the United States of America” may look like any other U.S. wall map. It’s about 4 feet by 3 feet. It uses a standard, two-dimensional conic projection. It has place names. Political boundaries. Lakes, rivers, highways.

So what makes this map different from the Rand McNally version you can buy at a bookstore? Or from the dusty National Geographic pull-down mounted in your child’s elementary school classroom? Can one paper wall map really outshine all others—so definitively that it becomes award-worthy?

I’m here to tell you it can. This is a masterful map. And the secret is in its careful attention to design.
The rest at Slate.

The Essential Geography of the United States of America
https://imusgeographics.com/

Dang. I don't have wall space to put this up!
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Old 06-02-2016, 12:21 PM   #2
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Very impressive. One minor complaint - If you look at the Imus website splash page, and peruse through example #3 (Mississippi Delta), you will see that Imus omitted Rosedale, Mississippi. He is obviously omitting towns below a certain size (Rosedale has about 2000 people). But, as a blues fan, I cringe in horror at the idea of Rosedale not being on a detailed map of the United States. He might have given some more consideration to some of the subjective criteria for including smaller towns on the map, such as the historical or cultural importance of a town.
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Old 06-02-2016, 02:37 PM   #3
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This is some fantastic map porn!

However, I'm not sure that I agree with his point #3:
Quote:
Another way the Essential Geography of the USA serves as a basic tool for building geographic literacy is it allows users to recognize and appreciate regional variations:

The ability to recognize and appreciate the unique geographic characteristics that distinguish one place or area from another is the essence of geographic understanding. Population density is one of these distinguishing characteristics.

The Mississippi Delta, presented in two details below, has a population density of approx. 44 people per square mile. The part of NW Ohio detailed below, has a population density of approx. 104 people per square mile, or 2.3 times the population density of the Mississippi Delta.

The Essential Geography represents only the principal cities and towns of a given area. The result is localized variations in place name density that reflect localized variations in population density, letting us accurately conclude, for instance, that the Mississippi Delta is less densely populated than the part of NW Ohio detailed here.




The towns along the Mississippi that he chooses not to show do exist. Deliberately excluding them from a map may show differences in population density but it also makes the map inaccurate. I happen to know the area of Ohio used in this comparison and I can tell you that Ada, Upper Sandusky, and Tiffin are not among "the principal cities and towns of a given area".

His use of this exclusionary rule is a shame because otherwise, it's a gorgeous map.
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Old 06-02-2016, 02:53 PM   #4
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Every map maker has to decide what communities to show and not show. When you're trying to show the entire continental United States in a map measured in inches there is simply no way to label all of them in a font that would not require a magnifying glass (at least) to read.
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Old 06-02-2016, 04:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A.T. Hagan View Post
Every map maker has to decide what communities to show and not show. When you're trying to show the entire continental United States in a map measured in inches there is simply no way to label all of them in a font that would not require a magnifying glass (at least) to read.
Perhaps a collaborative effort using these techniques would be the best approach. It is much less likely that culturally or historically significant important information would be omitted if a larger group of people were involved in the production and editing process. I am not taking anything away from Imus - it really looks like a first-rate map to me. I love the inclusion of geographic features - like actually being able to see where mountains are.
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Old 07-10-2016, 11:38 PM   #6
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Quite nice
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