Thetruesize online service allows you to compare the real sizes of countries

Thetruesize service allows you to estimate and compare the real sizes of countries.
Platforma writes about it.

Traditional world maps use a projection that was made common in the 16th century by the Flemish geographer Gerard Markator. In this way, the scale increases from the equator to the poles. That is, the lands in the north and south seem much larger than if they were located in the middle. Because of this, for example, Greenland looks larger than Australia and can be compared in size to South America, although it is actually three times and eight times smaller, respectively.

Thetruesize service allows you to compare the real sizes of different countries. Yes, at the equator Ukraine would be lost in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but at the poles it would swell to the size of Africa. And the seemingly small country of Somalia would occupy almost all of Scandinavia.

“We hope that teachers will use our service to show students how big our world really is,” said Thetruesize authors James Talmage and Damon Manis.

We remind you that the activists of the “Free Russia” foundation, who previously moved to Ukraine for political reasons, created the EmigRussia website, where they collect useful information for Russians who want to migrate to Ukraine.

The world-mapping method developed in the 16th century by Gerardus Mercator was considered revolutionary. And at the same time, he gave wrong ideas about the size of countries and continents to many generations of people. The True Size website proposes to rethink the world map associated with the cylindrical Mercator projection.

The developers of the resource write

“It is difficult to represent our spherical world on a flat sheet of paper. Cartographers use what’s called a “projection” to turn a globe into a 2D map. The most popular of these is the Mercator projection.

Each map projection is distorted, and each has its own set of problems. The main criticism of the Mercator map is that it does not preserve areas, but exaggerates the size of countries as they approach the poles (USA, Russia, Europe), while reducing the apparent size of states as they approach the equator (African continent). On a Mercator projection, Greenland looks about the same as Africa. In fact, the area of ​​Greenland is 2,130,800 square kilometers, and the area of ​​Africa is 30,132,000 square kilometers, that is, the mainland is more than 14 times larger than the island.

This tool was inspired by an episode of The West Wing and Kai Krause’s The True Size of Africa infographic. They expressed hope that educators would use their resource to show their students how big the world really is.

On The True Size website, you can compare the true sizes of countries and see how distorted our ideas about their size are. To do this, in the line located at the top left, you need to enter the name of the country. Its borders are highlighted in color. By clicking on them, drag it to any part of the world. The most interesting thing is to compare countries from different latitudes. For example, if you move Australia up, then it will cover a third of Russia, and if you move Greenland down, it will not even cover Argentina.