115 - A World Map of Manhattan



A history of successive waves of newcomers arriving in New York City, working their way up (or sideways) to make room for the next wave arguably makes NYC the most emblematic immigrant city in the world.


This map celebrates that diversity by assembling Manhattan out of the contours of many of the world’s countries. Danielle Hartman created the map based on data from the 2000 US Census. In all, 80 different countries of origin were listed in the census. The map-maker placed the country contours near the census area where most of the citizens of each country resided.


The title of this work is ‘Manhattan – Global Island’ to emphasise, in Hartman’s words, "the relationship between Manhattan island and the final island design. The global island suggests that residents from all over the world can coexist, that they are integral to making the City what it is, and they can still retain their separate identities. Rather than a melting pot, the City is a rich mosaic, a microcosm of the world."


Vietnam is at the southern tip of Manhattan, joined there by a country that looks like Portugal (the resolution of this image could have been better) and by Iraq, Italy and Spain, among others. China fills up the Lower East Side and, appropriately, Chinatown. Canadians and Australians seem to congregate mid-island, while Russians dominate the northern tip of Manhattan.


I found this map at Places & Spaces: Mapping Science, ‘an exhibition created to demonstrate the power of maps to understand, navigate and manage not only physical places, but also abstract information spaces’.

Big Think
Sponsored by Lumina Foundation

Upvote the video, or videos, you want to win.

As you vote, keep in mind that we are looking for a winner with the most engaging social venture pitch - an idea you would want to invest in. And note: We'll only count upvotes (not downvotes).

Keep reading Show less
  • Oumuamua, a quarter-mile long asteroid tumbling through space, is Hawaiian for "scout", or "the first of many".
  • It was given this name because it came from another solar system.
  • Some claimed Oumuamua was an alien technology, but there's no actual evidence for that.

Scientists create a "lifelike" material that has metabolism and can self-reproduce

An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.

Shogo Hamada/Cornell University
Surprising Science
  • Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
  • The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
  • The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
Keep reading Show less

7 fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Here are 7 often-overlooked World Heritage Sites, each with its own history.

Photo by Raunaq Patel on Unsplash
Culture & Religion
  • UNESCO World Heritage Sites are locations of high value to humanity, either for their cultural, historical, or natural significance.
  • Some are even designated as World Heritage Sites because humans don't go there at all, while others have felt the effects of too much human influence.
  • These 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites each represent an overlooked or at-risk facet of humanity's collective cultural heritage.
Keep reading Show less