A More Accurate World Map Wins Prestigious Japanese Design Award

To design a map of the world is no easy task. Because maps represent the spherical Earth in 2D form, they cannot help but be distorted, which is why Greenland and Antarctica usually look far more gigantic than they really are, while Africa appears vastly smaller than its true size. The AuthaGraph World Map tries to correct these issues, showing the world closer to how it actually is in all its spherical glory.

Created by Hajime Narukawa at Keio University's Graduate School of Media and Governance in Tokyo, the design just won the grand prize from Japan’s Good Design Award as Spoon & Tamago reports. It beat out over 1000 entries in a variety of categories. 

Unlike the Mercator projection, the 1569 mapping technique that you'd probably recognize from the world maps you saw in school, the continents on the AuthaGraph aren’t lined up straight across—they’re angled in a way that provides a more accurate representation of the distances between them. “AuthaGraph faithfully represents all oceans [and] continents, including the neglected Antarctica,” according to the Good Design Awards, and provides “an advanced precise perspective of our planet.” No longer does Africa look the same size as North America, or Antarctica look like one of the biggest continents (it’s smaller than everything but Europe and Australia).

The map—which is used in Japanese textbooks—can be fit into different shapes without losing its accuracy, and AuthaGraph sells paper assembly kits where you can fold it from a sphere to a cone to a flat map, mimicking the way the projection itself is made.

[h/t Spoon & Tamago]

All images courtesy AuthaGraph.

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How Much Money You Need to Earn in Each State to Rent a House, Mapped

iStock
iStock

In many places across the U.S., the rent is simply too damn high. Average housing prices are rising twice as fast as wages are, and as a result, more and more people are renting. And that's not cheap either—as of 2015, 38 percent of American households were "rent-burdened," meaning spending more than 30 percent of their income on housing.

What does this mean for you? This map from the cost information site How Much, spotted by Thrillist, can tell you. It details what kind of monthly income you need to make in order to rent the average home in each state without spending more than 30 percent of your salary.

The map may confirm what you already suspected: Places like California, New York, Massachusetts, D.C., and Hawaii are very expensive to live in. You might be surprised to learn just how expensive, though. While a renter in Iowa only needs to earn $3500 or so a month to comfortably pay for housing, someone living in Washington, D.C. needs to make almost $8500 a month, or almost $102,000 a year.

A pink and red map of monthly wages needed to afford housing in each state
How Much

Here's what you need to make each month to live in the top 10 most expensive states in the U.S.:

1. Washington D.C.: $8487
2. California: $8313
3. Hawaii: $7806
4. New York: $7223
5. Massachusetts: $7193
6. New Jersey: $6717
7. Colorado: $6197
8. Washington: $5993
9. Maryland: $5863
10. Connecticut: $5590

And here are the 10 cheapest:

1. West Virginia: $2960
2. Oklahoma: $3117
3. Arkansas: $3157
4. Alabama: $3313
5. Missouri: $3367
6 Kansas: $3437
7. Iowa: $3473
8. Mississippi: $3493
9. Kentucky: $3570
10. Ohio: $3613

But before you pack up and move to West Virginia or Mississippi, be aware that those states also have some of the lowest median wages in the U.S., meaning that in reality, housing isn't all that affordable there, either.

There are, to be sure, some weaknesses with this particular data. The map doesn't take into account what kind of home you'd be renting—it just looks at the median price for a rental in each state—nor does it distinguish between locations within states. (The rent in Syracuse, New York is a lot different than the rent in Manhattan, just like the rent in San Francisco is a lot different than the rent in Fresno, California.) But it's still a useful snapshot of our current housing situation.

Take a look at the rest of the data over on HowMuch.net.

[h/t Thrillist]

The Top-Rated Movie in Every Country

Vouchercloud
Vouchercloud

Want to impress your friends with your knowledge of foreign films but don’t know where to start? This map from Vouchercloud provides a good starting point. The UK-based voucher site used public reviews from IMDB to create a map showing the best-rated movie produced in nearly every country. (As it turns out, some nations, like North Korea, don’t have much of a film industry.)

A movie map of the world
Click here to enlarge
Vouchercloud

Films featured on the map were either produced, filmed, or linked in some way to the country in which they are listed. Judging by the map, drama appears to be the most popular genre worldwide, with the top movies from 39 countries being classified as such. Comedy is the second most popular genre, followed by adventure, crime, biography, action, and animation.

The newest releases from 2018 to appear on the map include The Wild Pear Tree (from Bosnia and Herzegovina), Dying to Survive (China), Ekvtime: Man of God (Georgia), Goodachari (India), Yowis Ben (Indonesia), Deception: Oo Pel Dan Myin (Myanmar), Dilan 1990 (Singapore), and Ahlat Agaci (Sweden).

Of course, a few familiar titles also make an appearance: The top movie in the U.S.—as well as the top-rated movie on IMDB’s site in general—is writer-director Frank Darabont’s 1994 drama The Shawshank Redemption. Other big box office hits include Casino Royale (claimed by the Bahamas) and The Dark Knight (UK). Many of the films on the map have ties to more than one country, such as Fight Club (1999), which is set in the U.S. but is listed as Germany’s top-rated film. Similarly, First They Killed My Father (the 2017 film directed by Angelina Jolie) was primarily shot in Cambodia.

If you want to get a jump start on your viewing party, Jolie's movie about the Khmer Rouge is available on Netflix streaming (at least for American viewers), as are Punjab 1984 (Canada’s top film) and Room (Ireland’s top film).

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