On my way into the office this morning, I caught a Morning Edition segment on my local NPR affiliate about Simon Garfield’s new book entitled “On the Map.” Garfield spoke with Steve Inskeep about everything from Ptolemy’s affect on Columbus’ voyage, to the Mercator Projection making Greenland appear larger than Africa, despite being a fraction of the size.
Reactions to Simon Garfield discussing “On The Map” with Steve Inskeep on NPR’s Morning Edition
One thing that I thought was particularly interesting was how the conversation between Garfield and Inskeep went to what the orientation, or the focal point, of a map connoted. They discussed how old maps of Greece focused on the Island of Rhodes due to it being a popular vacation destination for Greeks. They also discussed how maps on Smart Phones and GPS devices largely focus on the user and as such digital maps have become more egocentric in focus.
Ultimately, it was an interesting conversation and I highly recommend tuning in. I believe this conversation is important in understanding the contemporary role that maps have on our digital lives.