Author Topic: Wait, Europe is how big??  (Read 1458 times)

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Offline KJP

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Wait, Europe is how big??
« on: May 19, 2017, 09:09:34 AM »
The distance from Lisbon, Portugal to Moscow, Russia is the same distance as San Francisco to Washington DC....

18 True Size Maps That Prove Maps Have Been Lying To You
By Kellen Perry  117k views  18 items  tags  f  t  p  @ 

Maps, by their very nature, are big fat liars. Despite what the Flat-Earthers would have you believe, the world is indeed spherical, meaning any 2-D attempt to depict it has to be a distortion. One of the worst of these distortions is the famous Mercator projection, which makes Greenland look like Africa, despite it being a whopping 14 and half times smaller.

If you're looking for more accurate world maps, James Talmage and Damon Maneice's The True Size Of app has you covered. By dragging the outlines of countries and continents across the Mercator projection, you get to see what it would be like if, say, Florida was as exaggerated a peninsula as Sweden and Norway, or if Canada got taken down a peg and didn't benefit form its exaggerated, Mercator-enhanced form. The true size of Africa is perhaps the most shocking revelation: the Mercator projection dwarfs it, but it is actually large enough to contain both the United States and Australia. The slideshow below features some of the most surprising and eye-opening examples of what the app can reveal.

MORE:
http://www.ranker.com/list/true-size-world-maps/kellen-perry?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=pd&pgid=144361577286&utm_campaign=True_Size_Maps&asid=6062123569408&psid=10155345762777287
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Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2017, 09:31:40 AM »
Australia is roughly the size of the U.S.?! Crikey!
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 09:32:03 AM by David »
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Offline Hts121

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2017, 09:40:04 AM »
Your true friends will help you up when someone knocks you down.  Your best friend will say "Stay down, I got this."

Offline Hts121

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2017, 09:41:20 AM »
Flat maps are highly distorted.  Globes are more accurate.
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Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2017, 09:55:44 AM »
That clip is hilarious.

The Peters Projection has been around forever. We just refuse to acknowledge it and use it. One of the most ridiculous thing about the Mercator is Alaska vs. Mexico.
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Offline Hts121

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2017, 09:57:36 AM »
Or Greenland vs. Africa
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Offline Gramarye

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 09:58:43 AM »
Europe is particularly small if you leave out Russia.  Among other things, it's one reason why rail travel is so much easier to implement in Europe than in the US outside of our eastern seaboard (basically the only place where our development comes closer to looking like Europe's).  Berlin to Paris (and remember that Berlin is close to the far side of Germany from France) is about 550 miles.  By comparison, Chicago to Philadelphia is about 650 miles.

And forgetting the Europe vs. America comparisons for a moment, consider how hard it will ever be to get such systems across Africa--check out how many of those maps were intended to drive home just how enormous Africa is.

Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 10:02:48 AM »
From our friends at Geology.com



Gall-Peters Projection:




« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 10:05:01 AM by David »
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Offline KJP

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2017, 10:19:38 AM »
Europe is particularly small if you leave out Russia.  Among other things, it's one reason why rail travel is so much easier to implement in Europe than in the US outside of our eastern seaboard (basically the only place where our development comes closer to looking like Europe's).  Berlin to Paris (and remember that Berlin is close to the far side of Germany from France) is about 550 miles.  By comparison, Chicago to Philadelphia is about 650 miles.

And forgetting the Europe vs. America comparisons for a moment, consider how hard it will ever be to get such systems across Africa--check out how many of those maps were intended to drive home just how enormous Africa is.

Except Moscow is in the western part of Russia and the portion considered to be part of continental Europe. I would argue a counter fact that train service would work (again) in America especially east of the Mississippi because it has a preponderance of medium to large cities that are 100 to 150 miles apart. The size of France alone is pretty stunning (as is its population density which compares with Ohio's) and if that doesn't grab you then Ukraine will. Then there's Norway which has almost no population density but a far superior rail system to just about any place in America except the East Coast and West Coast.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 10:20:07 AM by KJP »
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Offline StrapHanger

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2017, 10:26:25 AM »
Not sure population density is very useful when thinking about rail viability...  The bigger issue is how concentrated people are, not the average number of people on every piece of land.
"Cleveland, as you see, is not an apple, but a bunch of grapes each of which has its own particular pattern-some large, others small, some round, others long and narrow, some sweet, others sour, some sound, others rotten throughout."  -Howard Whipple Green, 1932

Offline X

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2017, 12:58:16 PM »
This is why I just always use Google Earth now.

Offline KJP

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2017, 01:29:35 PM »
Not sure population density is very useful when thinking about rail viability...  The bigger issue is how concentrated people are, not the average number of people on every piece of land.

Yet every critic I meet says it is. But you're correct, and it's why Norway has good rail service. The population density within a few miles of an intercity rail station in Norway is very high. But the France/Ohio comparison also shows that we're not a rural state (or a nation comprised entirely of great, empty expanses) as some rail-detractors contend. I've often run into people who claim I'm lying when I say that France's population density is comparable to Ohio's. Or others say France is a "postage stamp" when in reality it's roughly midway between the land area of California and Texas. Or that Edinburgh is practically a suburb of London when it's actually the same distance from LA to San Fran or Washington DC to Boston.

So I thought a little geography thread would be in order.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 01:30:22 PM by KJP »
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Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2017, 01:40:19 PM »
In short, the anti-rail lobby needs to make Europe seem as different as possible in order to shut down any conversation here before it can gain any momentum. 


Offline KJP

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2017, 02:08:25 PM »
In short, the anti-rail lobby needs to make Europe seem as different as possible in order to shut down any conversation here before it can gain any momentum. 



And my job is to find and publicize the similarities. ;)
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Offline Eighth and State

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2017, 03:10:45 PM »
A buddy of mine drove a car from Bejing, China, to Paris, France, a distance of about 6000 miles. It took 35 days, which included 30 days of driving and 5 rest days. About 7 of those days were in Europe minus Russia. 28 days were in China, Mongolia, and Russia. That gives an idea of how big Asia is compared to Europe.


Offline ck

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2017, 03:32:53 PM »
Europe 3.931 million miČ
USA 3.797 million miČ

I think most people when thinking of Europe tend to focus on UK, France, Spain, Germany, Switzerland and Italy though - and for good reason.  It's certainly the power and cultural center of the region.  But the point is a good one, Europe is physically larger than the US.  That said, it's comparing a continent to a country.  If North America was compared to Europe, NA is 2x as big. Or just a bit bigger than Russia as a whole.  Australia ~3/4th the size of US.

Another telling statistic:
Europe ~473 cars per 1000 people
USA ~820 per 1000 people
Chicken or the egg?
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 03:35:19 PM by ck »

Offline Hts121

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2017, 03:42:08 PM »
^Around 1.5 million square miles of that is in Russia.  I think the poster above was commenting on the size of Europe minus Russia.  That's the Europe I'd say most people tend to focus on.

As for Australia, the vast majority of that country is a fairly useless wasteland, right?
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 03:43:32 PM by Hts121 »
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Offline Eighth and State

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2017, 04:02:15 PM »
And my job is to find and publicize the similarities. ;)

Who pays you for this again?

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2017, 04:11:11 PM »
As for Australia, the vast majority of that country is a fairly useless wasteland, right?

Most of the land across the Earth is a wasteland.  Just in the United States, at least 1/4 of the land, and possibly half, is too rugged or is a desert or tundra wasteland.  When you fly back to Ohio from Los Angeles, you fly over dirt and gravel for 1-2 hours. 

The habitable part of Australia is primarily along the east and southeast coasts, in the opposite direction of the entire rest of the world, sans New Zealand.  That's really bad luck. 

By comparison, the most useful part of the United States is the eastern half, and that half happened to face Europe.  If there was a desert from the Mississippi River to the Atlantic Ocean, the United States wouldn't have really hatched. 


Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #19 on: May 19, 2017, 04:17:45 PM »
Also, I read an interesting book about 10 years ago on the Lewis & Clark expedition.  They were hoping to find more Ohio and Indiana type land on the west side of the Rocky Mountains.  Instead they were disappointed to find that it was mostly rugged and not suitable for the best farming. 

The West Coast also only has a few natural ports -- San Diego, San Francisco, and Seattle.  Compare that to the East and Gulf coasts...dozens and dozens of them.   

Offline Civvik

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #20 on: May 19, 2017, 04:28:11 PM »
Perspective also comes into play with a lot of other issues of America vs Europe. Like healthcare. Americans don't like the idea of a giant bureaucracy making their healthcare decisions.

News flash. Anthem alone insures more people than 35 European countries. For a profit.
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Offline Hts121

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #21 on: May 19, 2017, 04:51:08 PM »
Also, I read an interesting book about 10 years ago on the Lewis & Clark expedition.  They were hoping to find more Ohio and Indiana type land on the west side of the Rocky Mountains.  Instead they were disappointed to find that it was mostly rugged and not suitable for the best farming.   

Interesting when you consider that California is now our largest supplier of produce by far
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Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #22 on: May 19, 2017, 10:52:43 PM »
That is weird but there's several factors that I think come into play. Diets were different back in the days of Lewis and Clark. They didn't have trendy "super foods" - they mostly just knew what they thought they needed to survive at the time. They didn't have people willing to spend the equivalent of $5 for a small bundle of asparagus. Guacamole wasn't a Super bowl tradition (California is the biggest producer of Avocados.)

They would have judged the landscape simply by what they knew. Also, there weren't fancy irrigation systems, green houses and they probably didn't have the knowledge of what all crops grow best, where.

There's also the fact that our landscapes change more frequently than most people would imagine. Global warming is definitely one factor. Then there's the fact that trees are not only moving north but also west. Scientists have been witnessing this phenomenon for a couple decades now. They're not exactly sure why they're moving west, but it is happening. Fact is, regions that used to experience severe drought are seeing a lot more rainfall so that may have something to do with it.

I know I'm getting a little off topic here but one thing I've always wondered about (I'm far from a scientist and haven't even done a google search on it yet) is how soil in both rural farmland and urban landscapes inevitably get depleted; or if not the soil itself, the valuable nutrients within it. Think about it - year after year, crops are harvested and the nutrients in the top soil are absorbed into the vegetation which then gets harvested and shipped elsewhere. Those plants don't die in that same spot and decompose to where all that organic matter would go into the soil in that same spot, thus enriching the soil again - as it would in a truly natural environment without human mono-cropping/harvesting. It's just getting depleted!

It's the same in urban environments, too, unfortunately. People cut and bag their grass weekly and have it shipped off. I had this epiphany last summer when I didn't have a job and I was doing all this landscaping work for my neighbors. They all wanted me to put their weeds, grass, ivy (which is f-ing everywhere in Shaker) leaves and branches all in brown bags, sent to the tree-lawn. I was thinking 'No wonder the soil here is pure clay and rock hard and just sucks.' The dirt just gets depleted and never replenished and there's no top soil. Maybe it's always been like that but we're talking about a community with a century-long history of wildly engineering lawns both public and private, with a heavy emphasis on removing the organic material away from the community. The soil really sucks though. At first I was amazed at what is able to grow here, knowing the soil conditions but then I was buying a sh!t ton of bags of top soil for my neighbors and realized what makes some of the flowers/plants possible. I'm not the best person to speak on the issue - it's purely speculation but it does cross my mind - is Ohio going to experience a dust bowl as a result of depleted top soil and harsh consequences from depleted nutrients in the soil? It doesn't seem practical to just import nutrient-rich top soil wherever people feel it's needed.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 11:18:58 PM by David »
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Offline thebillshark

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #23 on: May 19, 2017, 11:50:04 PM »
^I always wonder what will happen to the soil that's stuck under strip mall parking lots for thirty or forty years or even longer.  I haven't really read any case studies about reverting a parking lot back to farmland or natural habitat- and there's SO many parking lots everywhere. 
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 11:50:34 PM by thebillshark »

Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2017, 09:42:49 AM »
I bet it's great quality soil down there below the concrete, for the most part! Unless it's susceptible to automotive fluids permeating down into it. Otherwise, 1950s shopping centers basically have good soil capped off indefinitely.

We need a separate thread for this topic. It's far too fascinating to not have its own thread.

In sixth grade I actually did a science fair project regarding contaminated urban soil effecting plant growth. I took all these different samples of soil at urban gas stations and then took samples from some pristine areas and grew some sh!t in various pots with the soil samples. Of course there were controls. The plants all received the same amount of water and sun light. You guessed it... the plants grew much bigger and healthier in the soil I took from natural areas. My test strips even showed that the gas station soil had horrible PH levels. I only got second place at the Science fair! I was so p!ssed! Here I am 11 years old, addressing an urban crisis and the judges didn't care. Politics  :roll:
« Last Edit: May 20, 2017, 11:18:32 AM by David »
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Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2017, 12:38:00 PM »
Interesting when you consider that California is now our largest supplier of produce by far

California is such a physically large state because almost nobody was living there when they wanted to establish a western state.  So they needed a huge territory in order to get the 50,000 people the constitution requires.  In retrospect it's quite obvious that it should have been at least two states. 

If you haven't been through the Central Valley it's worth visiting just to see where strawberries and everything else comes from.  A completely surreal landscape for us easterners.  I'm sure the yields out there weren't anything like they are now back in the Grapes of Wrath era.  The difference of course is that all of the Southern and Texas expats featured in that classic book and who brought Country & Western music to Bakersfield and California's other uncool Central Valley hamlets have been replaced by an army of migrant Mexicans. 

Offline Eighth and State

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2017, 12:18:00 AM »

I just today by chance found this fuller projection on a main stream news site. This is got to be the first time I have ever seen one of the lesser-known projections anywhere other than a map geek forum. I have to admit it threw me for a second, even though I had just been reading this thread about projections.


Offline Eighth and State

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2017, 12:28:50 AM »
^Whoops, I didn't realize that the map came from National Geographic, which of course has to be the leader in cartography. Are they making a statement by using a different map projection?

Offline Eighth and State

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2017, 12:42:40 AM »
^Funny that the Mercator projection is criticized for making Europe bigger (and by association with size making it seem more important,) yet National Geographic, while using the Fuller projection, STILL feels that Europe is important enough to warrant a detail insert.

The real reason why the Mercator was invented is that it has special properties for navigation: a straight line between two points on the flat projection will give the correct astronomic bearing to follow to get from one point to another. The fact that it distorts the size to make the higher latitudes look bigger may actually be an advantage to those living in those latitudes, because, you know, other projections would require detail inserts to show all of those little countries in Europe.  :-D

Offline KJP

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #29 on: May 22, 2017, 08:37:09 AM »

Who pays you for this again?

Concerned citizens and mostly non-rail businesses who believe we should have more and better choices in how we travel.

You can support our efforts here, too: http://allaboardohio.org/join-us/
« Last Edit: May 22, 2017, 08:45:29 AM by KJP »
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Offline David

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Re: Wait, Europe is how big??
« Reply #30 on: May 22, 2017, 11:59:39 AM »
^Funny that the Mercator projection is criticized for making Europe bigger (and by association with size making it seem more important,) yet National Geographic, while using the Fuller projection, STILL feels that Europe is important enough to warrant a detail insert.

That Fuller projection is just disorienting and obnoxious. I don't like it.

Modern architects recognize 300 masterpieces but ignore the other 30 million buildings that have ruined the world. - Andres Duany

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