Wednesday, 16 December 2015

A Message to Educators - Start Using the Azimuthal Equidistant Map Projection

Dear Educators,

Whether you are a teacher in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Halifax, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Yukon, or Northwest Territories; or an educator in one of the 50 states of America, this involves you. This is a dire message for all classrooms across the earth - from Canada to the United States, to Central and South America; to Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia, Russia, and Australia; from the Pacific to the Atlantic, from the Northern Hemisphere to the Southern Hemisphere.

This is an important subject to any educator teaching Social Studies, Geography, Humanities, History, or when using any map references. The maps we have been handed down by the authorities is WRONG. It falsely depicts land masses and their relation to each other, and it wrongly portrays our view of the world. Please watch the video below, and urge your administrators to use the Azimuthal equidistant map projection, as opposed to the false Mercator projection:

Given how popular the Mercator projection is, it's wise to question how it makes us view the world. Many have noted, for example, how the distortion around the poles makes Africa look smaller than Greenland, when in reality Africa is about 14.5 times as big. In 2010, graphic artist Kai Krause made a map to illustrate just how big the African continent is. He found that he was able to fit the United States, India and much of Europe inside the outline of the African continent [Washington Post].

If we are educating our children to become servants of today's industry, should they not be using the same maps that are in use by other professionals today?
This projection is used by the USGS in the National Atlas of the United States of America, and for large-scale mapping of Micronesia. It is useful for showing airline distances from centre point of projection and for seismic and radio work.
In the case of radio, this projection allows for directional antenna aiming, especially in the case of HF communications. An operator can point the antenna, usually by an electric rotator, simply locating the target in the map and rotating the antenna to the angle indicated by the map. The map should be centered as nearly as possible to the actual antenna location [Wikipedia].

What is also more fascinating is that the Azimuthal Equidistant Map Projection makes more sense when observing the wind patterns, that play a huge role in our weather systems. Watch the whole video below, or fast-forward to the map segment by clicking this link:

 What is similarly interesting is when we observe flights that embark in the Southern Hemisphere, and flights that are tracked on the Azimuthal Equidistant Map Projection. Watch a video interview which explains this in more detail here.

Emblem of the United Nations containing an approximate polar azimuthal equidistant projection. Compare the relative sizes of Australia and north Africa with those in the previous render.
Polar azimuthal equidistant projection

No comments:

Post a Comment