Saturday, February 24, 2007

The right side up.

Ever wondered why, on world maps, North should always be up? There is no reason why it should be so.

Why should maps show Europe at the centre? In the Victorian era when the sun never set in the British empire, they could get away by referring to Japan as the Far-east, Arabia as the Middle-East, etc. Why should Britain be the point of reference any more?

There are maps printed in Australia, which are upside down, and which show Australia at the very top. Understandable. The Australians must have hated being shown constantly as some kind of appendage in a distant corner of the globe.

Take a look at this interactive map, with the so-called southern hemisphere on top and where you can choose the ‘frame of reference’.

You get to see the world a little differently, don’t you?.

Coming soon. A map of India, where Tamilnadu will be the topmost state.

Update 02/03/07 : Here's a view and perspective from the North Pole. Can you spot India?

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