The World Freedom Atlas, offers many different views of the world. Developed by Zachary Forest Johnson, his blog is here. The one above is the Raw Political Rights Score (darker is better) based on data from the Freedom House. Offering a bunch of datasets from a number of different sources, the interface is fantastically easy to use. Depending on the dataset, you can also view the data by year from 1990-2006.
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Found on Information Aesthetics, this is a map of all 4,294,967,296 IP addresses in the world. Blocks of addresses are shown grouped together in squares based on the owner (ISP, corporation, goverment, university, etc.), and individual addresses are shown as grey dots. The IP addresses that are listed on the Spamhaus XBL blacklist are shown as red dots, representing suspect addresses.
From CraigStats, the image above shows the population per square mile in the San Francisco area as a pseudo heat map. The site also has combined the apartment listings on Craig's List with Google maps to create pseudo heat maps showing the areas with the most apartments.
Breathing Earth is a cool website that displays international statistics in real-time, similar in concept to Poodwaddle.com's World Counter. Breathing Earth focuses on carbon dioxide emissions by country and adds population, births and deaths.
Welcome to Breathing Earth. This presentation displays the carbon dioxide emission levels of every country in the world, as well as their birth and death rates - all in real-time. Though considerable effort has been taken to ensure that the presentation uses the most accurate and up-to-date data available, please remember that this is just a simulation.Breathing Earth was created by David Bleja (aka Stillwater), whose home website is stillwater-microcosm.net
Found on SimpleComplexity.net
From mySociety.org, time travel maps take into consideration the means of travel (car, rail, etc.) and the different paths available. Above is a map of London and shows time to travel from the center of town. The white contour lines represent half hour intervals, and the color coding has warm colors for the shortest times, and cool colors for the longest times.
The really interesting feature are the "islands". These small circles represent destinations that you can reach much faster than the surrounding area. Mainly stations for faster trains than have fewer stops.
Strangely similar in concept to an "event horizon".
Last year I was in Shanghai, China on business. A friend suggested we visit the Shanghai Urban Planning building, and the first thing I thought was "ohhh, I bet that's exciting...not". But, he convinced us to give it a try, and here are a few photos I took.
On the top floor of this building is the largest model of urban planning in the world. For an American, seeing Shanghai is a shock at how large the city is, and how many skyscrapers there are. For reference, Shanghai's population is about 22 million people, compared to about 8 million in New York. Most U.S. cities have a "downtown" type area where the most skyscrapers are clustered, but Shanghai is a city of skyscrapers everywhere.
The World Population Map is one way to understand the scale difference between the U.S. and China, but this model city is astounding. Even better than riding around town (you definitely don't want to be the one driving), the model city really drives home the scale of Shanghai, and what has been accomplished in urban development. The model is built at 1:2000 scale.