Top 10 greatest maps that changed the world

UK subway map

Click on image to go to the article

By Peter Barber, Head of Map Collections at the British Library:

From the USSR’s Be On Guard! map in 1921 to Google Earth, a new exhibition at the British Library charts the extraordinary documents that transformed the way we view the globe forever.

If I get to choose a favorite from this collection, it would be the London subway map above. For me the map is one of those very few that are still shaping our current trend in design aesthetics.

Dismissed as too ‘revolutionary’ when it was first submitted in 1931, Harry Beck’s Underground map solved the problem of how to represent clearly and elegantly a dense, complex interweaving of train lines.

Placing the stations at similar intervals regardless of their true locations amplifies the area of central London, increasing its clarity, while the straight lines and interchange symbols confer a simplicity and order on the network. A cartographic icon.

Read the rest of the article

via Jason Kottke

Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.