Love, Hate & Other Difficulties in the Middle East

David McCandless & UniversLab created an interactive visualization of the relationships between countries and entities in the Middle East, along with those that exert influence on them.

Images from the Top: Those that hate each other; that that love each other; those that hate Syria (left); those that love Syria (right); and, probably, the most apt visualization, those whose relationships are “complicated” (bottom). Via Information is BeautifulSelect to embiggen. 

The data and sourcing McCandles & Universlab use can be viewed via this spreadsheet, and they invite feedback and updated information as relationships evolve. 

Carla Puorro, Bitter End, 2013 - from the series Transliterations of Poems to a Kitten

trans·lit·er·ate \tran(t)s-ˈli-tə-ˌrāt, tranz-\
: to write words or letters in the characters of another alphabet

Each block, each color, each sequence has meaning. My cipher for you to decode.

Mapping Perspective

Via Al Jazeera:

Why do maps always show the north as up? For those who don’t just take it for granted, the common answer is that Europeans made the maps and they wanted to be on top. But there’s really no good reason for the north to claim top-notch cartographic real estate over any other bearing, as an examination of old maps from different places and periods can confirm…

…There is nothing inevitable or intrinsically correct — not in geographic, cartographic or even philosophical terms — about the north being represented as up, because up on a map is a human construction, not a natural one. Some of the very earliest Egyptian maps show the south as up, presumably equating the Nile’s northward flow with the force of gravity. And there was a long stretch in the medieval era when most European maps were drawn with the east on the top. If there was any doubt about this move’s religious significance, they eliminated it with their maps’ pious illustrations, whether of Adam and Eve or Christ enthroned. In the same period, Arab map makers often drew maps with the south facing up, possibly because this was how the Chinese did it.

Things changed with the age of exploration. Like the Renaissance, this era didn’t start in Northern Europe. It began in the Mediterranean, somewhere between Europe and the Arab world. In the 14th and 15th centuries, increasingly precise navigational maps of the Mediterranean Sea and its many ports called Portolan charts appeared. They were designed for use by mariners navigating the sea’s trade routes with the help of a recently adopted technology, the compass. These maps had no real up or down — pictures and words faced in all sorts of directions, generally pointing inward from the edge of the map — but they all included a compass rose with north clearly distinguished from the other directions.

Image: A perfectly good map. Select to embiggen.

By visualizing yourself as a slimmer person, your subconscious will begin to believe you are this new person. Your subconscious will begin to assist you in achieving your goal. You will then begin to act according to this new vision of yourself.

Impossible Evaluation: Incredible Illustration by  Oscar Ramos

Ad+ on Behance

Inspired by the famous creations of Dutch artist Maurits Cornelis Escher, known for his engravings and lithographs that represent impossible constructions, explorations of infinity, and combination of motifs that gradually change into completely different forms, a statement particular for the excellent series of creations by the artist and character designer Oscar Ramos Chilean based in Santiago. Titled “Ad +“, check the amazing series in detail in the sequel! Really impressive work!

Chilean artist Oscar Ramos has made these awesome Escherian (Escherist? Escherish?) color illustrations in which bacon turn into apples or fishes into flowers. They are very detailed and simply beautiful.

Scroll vertically quickly to get full effect.

Visualization is a very powerful tool to set your mind into some kind of successful mindset.

If you can feel yourself being successful with visualization, it will help you achieve your goals and success. 

Visualize in the morning when you wake up and just before going to sleep at night, close your eyes, imagine yourself feeling and acting as if you were already successful. 

Then act this way in your everyday life. You can do it & you will do it. 


A Typographical History of NASA

Data artists and visualization researchers at the Office for Creative Research dug through 11,000 pages of NASA history reports, containing nearly 5 million words, to assemble this typographical timeline of the U.S. space program.

The vertical waves represent the total NASA and percent of national budgets (which is why it begins to shrink toward the right side of the page). The most important words and phrases from each year are listed in lieu of traditional milestones, giving us a unique perspective on the key events that led us up up and away.

Tour the full-size, interactive visualization of NASA’s history here, it’s really something (and it’s also way too big for me to show you on my blog)

(via Popular Science)