A world map of private islands (some are a steal!)
There's something special about islands - in some cases, it's the price tag
- In fiction or reality, islands exert a special attraction on the imagination
- For the ultra-rich, owning an island is the ultimate luxury
- However, some islands are affordable even with a modest budget
Your own private island
Ontario, an unexpected hot spot of private island ownership
Image: TD Architects
An island is a whole world in manageable miniature. That's why in fiction, they're the ideal setting for controlled experiments, be it in political philosophy (Utopia), platitudinous piracy (Treasure Island) or problematic paleogenetics (Isla Nublar).
Real islands too kindle the imagination. You don't need to be a cartography buff, but it helps. Either way, whether traced on a map or visited in person, there's something irresistible about the arbitrary confines of an island. Is it the promise of solitude, the potential for peace of mind?
Perhaps it is the illusion that you are World King, even if that world can be circumambulated in an hour. For some, however, that illusion comes with a very tangible attribute – a title deed.
Where are the oligarch islands?
Some of the more affordable islands on the map can be found in New England and Canada's Atlantic provinces
Image: TD Architects
Scattered around the world are islands small enough (or with owners rich enough) to come with a 'keep off' sign; these are essentially private yachts permanently anchored to the ocean floor, isolated from the rest of us by the water that laps their shores. This map shows a fair selection of these private islands, fringing the coasts of the world's continents.
Some coasts more than others, though. The map's legend conveniently covers Eastern Europe, Russia and China. Does the legacy of communism mean these countries frown upon oligarchs owning entire islands?
Conversely, there are clearly a number of private island hotspots around the world:
Putting the Bahamas on the map
Three of the most expensive private islands are in the Caribbean - the biggest one is in Brazil
Image: TD Architects
- The entire eastern seaboard of North America is dotted with private islands, from Nova Scotia in the north all the way down to the Florida Keys.
- Perhaps the only time the Bahamas get an outsized spot on a world map; Florida's neighbor is teeming with private islands - including one of the cheapest and one of the most expensive on the map. The rest of the Caribbean is not doing too badly either.
- Here's looking at you, Central America. Is that flock of private dots entirely contained within Belize, or is there spillage into Mexico?
Feature from the Venice lagoon
Who wants to own a piece of Venice?
Image: TD Architects
- A nice collection of dots along the North America's West Coast, but more surprising is the congregation of private islands in Ontario.
- In South America, a striking collection of big'uns, with Brazil's Ilha das Pacas taking the cake.
- In Europe, there's an abundance of private islands in southern Sweden, Italy but especially Greece.
- As one might expect, the combination of excellent climate and a multitude of paradise-like islands and atols in the Pacific puts those islands nations prominent on this map.
Private paradise or private prison?
Greece abounds in private islands. Turkey only has a few - including the prison island housing PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan
Image: TD Architects
The islands on the map, which dates from 2015, are color-coded for price. From lightest green: up to €5/m2 ($4.6/sq yd) to darkest: €500-€5,000/m2 ($464-$4,642/sq yd). Their size on the map reflects actual size: Brazil's Ilha das Pacas, the largest island on the map, is about 150 km2 (60 sq mi) – about three times the size of Manhattan.
Owning your own private island doesn't have to break the bank. The five cheapest islands, labelled in blue, range from €37,000 ($41,000) for Small Island, USA to €53,000 ($59,000) for Forbes Island, Canada (the latter with some forest property on the mainland thrown in).
An overview of some of the private islands in Asia/Pacific, including the most expensive one on the map: Rangyai in Thailand
Image: TD Architects
On the other hand, if you do have the do re mi, here's where you could spend it on:
- Cave Cay in the Bahamas. You get change for €83 million (app. $92m)
- Macapule Island, Mexico: not even €88 million ($98m)
- A collection of three Mexican islands, Venado, Pajaros and Los Lobos. Yours for €92 million ($102m)
- Pumpkin Key, Florida. A mere €101 million ($112m)
- Rangyai Island, off Phuket in Thailand: just over €147 million ($163m).
As mentioned, the map is a few years old. But don't worry, there are still islands for sale. Hen Island, Ontario can be yours for under $26,000. At the other end of the spectrum, Rangyai is still for sale. Same price (or best offer).
The world's private islands are unevenly distributed. Africa and the former communist bloc are underrepresented on this map
Image: TD Architects
Strange Maps #994
Got a strange map? Let me know at email@example.com.
- Saudi Arabia threatens to turn Qatar into an island ›
- Forget Colonization. The UAE Plans to Build a City on Mars by 2117 ... ›
- The World (Under Construction) - Big Think ›
- This virtual island is the office of a $610 million company. - Big Think ›
What would happen if you tripled the US population? Join Matthew Yglesias and Charles Duhigg at 1pm ET on Monday, September 28.
The idea of 'absolute time' is an illusion. Physics and subjective experience reveal why.
- Since Einstein posited his theory of general relativity, we've understood that gravity has the power to warp space and time.
- This "time dilation" effect occurs even at small levels.
- Outside of physics, we experience distortions in how we perceive time — sometimes to a startling extent.
Physics without time<p>In his book "The Order of Time," Italian theoretical physicist Carlo Rovelli suggests that our perception of time — our sense that time is forever flowing forward — could be a highly subjective projection. After all, when you look at reality on the smallest scale (using equations of quantum gravity, at least), time vanishes.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"If I observe the microscopic state of things," writes Rovelli, "then the difference between past and future vanishes … in the elementary grammar of things, there is no distinction between 'cause' and 'effect.'"</p><p>So, why do we perceive time as flowing <em>forward</em>? Rovelli notes that, although time disappears on extremely small scales, we still obviously perceive events occur sequentially in reality. In other words, we observe entropy: Order changing into disorder; an egg cracking and getting scrambled.</p><p>Rovelli says key aspects of time are described by the second law of thermodynamics, which states that heat always passes from hot to cold. This is a one-way street. For example, an ice cube melts into a hot cup of tea, never the reverse. Rovelli suggests a similar phenomenon might explain why we're only able to perceive the past and not the future.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Any time the future is definitely distinguishable from the past, there is something like heat involved," Rovelli wrote for the <a href="https://www.ft.com/content/ce6ef7b8-429a-11e8-93cf-67ac3a6482fd" target="_blank"><em>Financial Times</em></a>. "Thermodynamics traces the direction of time to something called the 'low entropy of the past', a still mysterious phenomenon on which discussions rage."</p>
The strange subjectivity of time<p>Time moves differently atop a mountain than it does on a beach. But you don't need to travel any distance at all to experience strange distortions in your perception of time. In moments of life-or-death fear, for example, your brain would release large amounts of adrenaline, which would speed up your internal clock, causing you to perceive the outside world as moving slowly.<br></p><p>Another common distortion occurs when we focus our attention in particular ways.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"If you're thinking about how time is <em>currently</em> passing by, the biggest factor influencing your time perception is attention," Aaron Sackett, associate professor of marketing at the University of St. Thomas, told <em><a href="https://gizmodo.com/why-does-time-slow-down-and-speed-up-1840133782" target="_blank">Gizmodo</a></em>.<em> "</em>The more attention you give to the passage of time, the slower it tends to go. As you become distracted from time's passing—perhaps by something interesting happening nearby, or a good daydreaming session—you're more likely to lose track of time, giving you the feeling that it's slipping by more quickly than before. "Time flies when you're having fun," they say, but really, it's more like "time flies when you're thinking about other things." That's why time will also often fly by when you're definitely <em>not</em> having fun—like when you're having a heated argument or are terrified about an upcoming presentation."</p><p>One of the most mysterious ways people experience time-perception distortions is through psychedelic drugs. In an interview with <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/apr/14/carlo-rovelli-exploding-commonsense-notions-order-of-time-interview" target="_blank"><em>The Guardian</em></a>, Rovelli described a time he experimented with LSD.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"It was an extraordinarily strong experience that touched me also intellectually," he said. "Among the strange phenomena was the sense of time stopping. Things were happening in my mind but the clock was not going ahead; the flow of time was not passing any more. It was a total subversion of the structure of reality."<br></p><p>It seems few scientists or philosophers believe time is completely an illusion.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"What we call <em>time</em> is a rich, stratified concept; it has many layers," Rovelli told <em><a href="https://physicstoday.scitation.org/do/10.1063/PT.6.4.20190219a/full/" target="_blank">Physics Today</a>.</em> "Some of time's layers apply only at limited scales within limited domains. This does not make them illusions."</p>What <em>is</em> an illusion is the idea that time flows at an absolute rate. The river of time might be flowing forever forward, but it moves at different speeds, between people, and even within your own mind.
Dominique Crenn, the only female chef in America with three Michelin stars, joins Big Think Live.
Having been exposed to mavericks in the French culinary world at a young age, three-star Michelin chef Dominique Crenn made it her mission to cook in a way that is not only delicious and elegant, but also expressive, memorable, and true to her experience.
Controversial physics theory says reality around us behaves like a computer neural network.
- Physicist proposes that the universe behaves like an artificial neural network.
- The scientist's new paper seeks to reconcile classical physics and quantum mechanics.
- The theory claims that natural selection produces both atoms and "observers".
Vanchurin interview:<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="539759cbfd8fcd5b6ebf14a3b597b3f9"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/bmyRy2-UhEE?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span>
Vanchurin on “Hidden Phenomena”:<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="18886ffd5e5840bb19d4494212f88d82"><iframe type="lazy-iframe" data-runner-src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/2NDVdNwsHCo?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span>Vitaly Vanchurin speaking at the 6th International FQXi Conference, "Mind Matters: Intelligence and Agency in the Physical World." The Foundational Questions...
43% of people think they can get a sense of someone's personality by their picture.
If you've used a dating app, you'll know the importance of choosing good profile pics.
Quarantine rule breakers in 17th-century Italy partied all night – and some clergy condemned the feasting
17th-century outbreaks of plague in Italy reveal both tensions between religious and public health authorities.