Strange Maps Joins Big Think
Libyan strongman Muammar Gadaffi has it in for peace-loving Switzerland. He says he'd destroy the country if he had atomic weapons. But since he doesn't have them, he advocates wiping Switzerland off the map by partitioning it into three parts along linguistic lines and ceding those parts to neighboring France, Italy, and Germany. Gadaffi's fanciful rearrangement of Switzerland is shown in a map on Big Think's marvelously quirky new blog, Strange Maps.
Since 2006, London journalist Frank Jacobs has served up 476 cartographic curiosities on Strange Maps, all of which can now be found on Big Think. He collects all kinds of maps—real, fake, imagined, and historic—and publishes them with commentary. His most popular map, "US States Renamed For Countries With Similar GDPs," has been viewed more than 587,000 times. Some 300,000 people enjoyed his Pop vs. Soda map, which showed by region of the country what locals call the 43 gallons of carbonated beverages that the average American drinks annually. His post Europe, If the Nazis Had Won, which was viewed by 232,000 people, is sobering and chilling, and his map Where (and How) Evolution Is Taught in the US is disturbing in another way.
Not all his maps are serious. For example, there is the map of the area codes of regions of the US where the rapper Ludacris sings about having "hoes." In his post "Friends, Polypotamians, Countrymen!," Jacobs depicts Thomas Jefferson's vision for dividing the Northwest Territory into ten states with names such as Sylvania and Assenisipia.
Check back at Strange Maps every Monday for the latest bizarre map that Jacobs will be posting to Big Think.
We live in an age in which publishing on paper is in trouble. But Strange Maps, which was launched on the Internet and has a large, devoted online following, inspired one successful print publication, an anthology of cartographic treats released by Penguin.
What makes an excellent educator?
- When it comes to educating, says Dr. Elizabeth Alexander, a brave failure is preferable to timid success.
- Fostering an environment where one isn't afraid to fail is tantamount to learning.
- Human beings are complicated and flawed. Working with those complications and flaws leads to true knowledge.
Drinking home alone in your underwear just might be what you need to be as relaxed as the Finnish.
- Päntsdrunk is the latest trend to come out of Scandinavia and it involves drinking alone at home.
- Finnish writer Miska Rantanen outlines the philosophy in his newest book titled: Pantsdrunk: Kalsarikanni: The Finnish Path to Relaxation.
- Kalsarikänni is a word in Finnish that literally means "drinking at home and alone in your underwear."
We all know sleeping with your ex is a bad idea, or is it?
- In the first study of its kind, researchers have found sex with an ex didn't prevent people from getting over their relationship.
- Instead of feeling worse about their breakup after a hookup, the new singles who attempted sexual contact with their ex reported feeling better afterwards.
- The findings suggest that not every piece of relationship advice is to be taken at face value.
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