A True Picture of Population Density

Look up a city’s urban density on Wikipedia, and you know you’re only getting a small slice of the story. There’s no way exactly 27,857.9 people live in every square mile of New York City – some areas are far more packed, some are relatively empty (at least when it comes to living space). Perhaps the best way to get a true picture of where people live is to check out the residential density per square kilometer. That’s what these 3D maps from LSECities visualize, giving us a unique look at 9 world cities and their distribution of people. Each map here looks at a 100 x 100 kilometer square, and quickly reveals how factors like topography and the location of public transport have influenced the growth of these places.

Michael Pecirno’s Minimalist Maps Reveal the Hidden Landscapes of America

London-based designer Michael Pecirno creates minimalist maps in an ongoing project to understand the landscape of the world. His work is exploratory, using a decidedly narrow set of data to see the unique patterns it creates across the land. In each case, the map is drawn with data points, leaving traditional physical and political borders to our imagination.

Metal Subway Map Cuffs Are Perfect for the Stylish Traveler

Nothing says tourist like holding a giant map while you try to find your way around a new city. But Designhype wants you to look stylish and confident while you’re exploring the world. They have created a brilliant metal cuff that combines fashion with function. Featuring subway maps of major metro cities, it’s a collection that every traveler can appreciate.

Where Are the Most Popular NYC Filming Locations? This Map Has the Answer.

No matter how you slice it, New York City is one of the world’s most popular filming locations. From the top of the towering skyline, to the cab filled streets of Times Square, the city has featured in more than 517 films… and that’s just in the last 3 years. So where are the most popular areas to film? Metrocosm broke it down by visualizing all the film permit data from the “Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre, and Broadcasting” (every city should have one!), creating a street-centric heat map that quickly reveals some very hot filming locations (17,241 in 3 years to be exact).

Road Trip! Randy Olson Calculated The Optimal Trip to U.S. Landmarks in 48 States

Remember that viral story about the most efficient way to find Waldo? Well, Randy Olson is back with something that could save you more than time hunting for the right guy wearing red and white stripes – this one will save you fuel. With the help of Tracy Staedter from Discovery News, he’s created an interesting exercise in efficient road tripping, charting the optimal route around the 48 contiguous U.S. states stopping at national landmarks all along the way.

If The Moon and Mars Had Oceans, What Would They Look Like?

Humans have long dreamt of living on other planets, but last time we checked they weren’t too keen on setting up permanent residence on the red dusty plains of Mars or even on a Moon mountain. The climate on those two celestial bodies isn’t exactly inviting – but there are plenty of people who dream of changing that. Terraforming is the theoretical process of modifying a planet to make it more Earth-like, and these two fascinating maps from data scientist Seth Kadish show what it could look like on Mars and the Moon.

How Much Does It Cost to Live In Each of the World’s Countries?

How much does it cost to live in Sweden? How about Morocco or Japan? You can’t just compare exchange rates to figure that out. You need people on the ground reporting on how much they pay for a loaf of bread, an apartment or a glass of beer in Stockholm, Fez and Tokyo. That’s what Numbeo has been doing for years, creating a cost of living database with a lot of help from people all around the world. Movehub recently took that information and created a fantastic series of maps comparing how expensive it is to live in all the world’s countries. How does yours measure up?

Flowing Maps Explore the City’s Impact on the Local Environment

Digital artist and illustrator Istvan has created a series of maps which artfully imagine the affect of cities and their human inhabitants on the local environment. His colorful images aren’t scientific in nature, but rather a personal exploration of what it might look like if the energies of the metropolis flowed out of the city itself.

Fanny Hands Lane & Sally’s Bottom: Maps of Britain’s Slightly Rude and Just Plain Silly Place Names

If you’ve ever hopped off a flight to London and taken the Underground into the city, you were treated to something remarkably British. Over the loudspeaker a soothing voice announces without a bit of a giggle, that you are on the train bound for… Cockfosters. It’s a name that would raise most english speaker’s eyebrows, but not the English themselves. Welcome to Great Britain, home of very silly names.

Jennifers and Michaels: Two Maps Reveal the Most Popular Girls and Boys Names Over 6 Decades

If you’ve ever been in a class surrounded by people with the same name, they were probably on this map. Jezabel put together two utterly fascinating GIFs tracking the most popular boys and girls names over the last six decades – and it’s an epic battle of popularity.