'The West' is, in fact, the world's biggest gated community

A review of the global "wall" that divides rich from poor.

Image: TD Architects
Strange Maps
  • Trump's border wall is only one puzzle piece of a global picture.
  • Similar anxieties are raising similar border defenses elsewhere.
  • This map shows how, as a result, "the West" is in fact one large gated community.
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Behold Sicily's Mount Etna — its volcanic summit is the world's only decipoint

The summit of Europe's most active volcano is also the world's only decipoint.

Image courtesy of Patrick McGranaghan
Strange Maps
  • For millennia, Etna has been Europe's most active volcano.
  • The Sicilian mountain is also the world's only decipoint.
  • Ten municipalities meet at its summit — at least on a map.
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Why Germany is a blank spot on Google's Street View

There are good historical reasons why Germans are suspicious of surveillance — but is Google as bad as Gestapo or Stasi?

Image: Google Maps
Strange Maps
  • Since its launch in 2007, Google Street View has mapped millions of miles of roads across the world – and even gone to space and into the ocean
  • Germany and Austria are a conspicuous gap in the mess of blue lines that covers the rest of Europe
  • It's to do with Germans' curious sense of privacy: they'd rather flaunt their private parts than their personal data
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Solved: the mystery of Brazil's time-traveling capital city

"Brasilia, the biggest paper town ever."

Image source: Nevinho, CC BY-SA 3.0
Strange Maps
  • Why does Brasilia, built in the 1950s, pop up on a 1920s map of South America?
  • We put the question out there, and the answers — some more credible than others — came flooding back.
  • Thank you, internet hive mind: you've solved a cartographic mystery!
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