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Is the Canada bigger than Africa?

And what about Greenland? Is it twice the size of Europe?

Ok, everybody knows that the earth is a sphere, but have you ever thought that it’s quite difficult to represent it on a plan?

There is no way to correctly convert a whole sphere on a flat paper. But in 1569 the geographer and cartographer Gerardus Mercator drew a cylindrical map projection of the entire earth.

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In few years it became the reference map for sailors and explorers around the world. Being based on a projection, Mercator’s map introduces quite some level of distortion: the world map is in some ways misleading. In fact, the Mercator projection misrepresents the size of countries as the latitude increases from the Equator to the poles. In this way, the surface of continents and countries near to poles appear larger than they actually are.

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In this way, landmasses such as central Africa or central America (near to equator), appear small; contrariwise Antarctica, Greenland or Canada look enormous. For example, despite the real area of Greenland is about 2.166.086 KM2 and African one is 30.221.532 KM2; based on Mercator projection, Greenland appear of the the same size of the whole Africa!

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To overcome this misleading, James Talmage and Damon Maneice created a new free-access web site “The true size of…”. Thanks to this new approach, you will be able to appreciate the actual size of continents and countries.

I know you don’t think so, but you will discover that Greenland has the same size of Congo!

Okay, now do you still believe that Antarctica is so big?

If you don’t believe it, please enjoy on   http://thetruesize.com/

 

Emanuele Sasso

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