Wednesday, February 24, 2021

This is the most realistic world map ever made


For years, even centuries, that researchers wondered how to effectively flatten the Earth to represent it on a two-dimensional map. Physicists are now proposing a solution that appears revolutionary: that of a round, double-sided card.

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[EN VIDÉO] The 3D map of the history of the Universe
One of the most important advances of the last decade in terms of cosmological observation: the most complete 3D map of the universe ever!

The Earth is round, there is no longer any doubt about it now. But this has long posed difficulties for cartographers who seek to accurately account for these curvatures on two-dimensional maps. And today finally, a trio d’experts of the question seems to offer a solution: a double-sided and round flat card, a bit like a disc vinyl. The most astonishing, it is perhaps that we did not think of it sooner.

Note that, according to Richard Gott, professor in astrophysics in Princeton (United States), “A card cannot be perfect“. The good old Mercator projection after the Flemish geographer, for example – the classic projection displayed in classrooms – represents local forms well, but it does deforms surfaces near the poles.

Researchers from Princeton (United States) provide a disc-shaped, double-sided map of the Earth. It provides the most accurate distances than other maps and minimizes distortion. © J. Richard Gott, Robert Vanderbei and David Goldberg, Princeton University

A solution that seems obvious

“We do like high jumper Dick Fosbury in 1968, we take a whole new approach to creating a map with as few errors as possible”, explains Richard Gott, in a communicated. This is how the idea of ​​a double-sided card germinated in the minds of researchers. With l’northern hemisphere on one side and thesouthern hemisphere the other.

Cartographers claim that distances represented on this new map are never deviated by more than 22.2% from reality. Whereas the Mercator projection gives important errors near the poles and even infinite at the edge of the map since regions which touch in reality seem the most distant on the map. On the other hand, the regions on the edge of the map are only 1.57 times larger than those in the center.

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