Tagged: fun


Rant: Metric vs. imperial

One would assume the case of metric vs. imperial units to be settled once you lose a $ 327.6 million space mission to faulty calculations involving imperial units. Yet, I know staunch defenders of the imperial units system. This rant is for them (transcript follows):...


Flag geekery

Alas, New Zealand’s proposition for a new flag design has been voted against a few weeks ago: But flags are always an interesting topic of discussion, from a design, cultural, historic, or simply aesthetic point of view. Via my friend Frank Ostermann I’ve learnt about...


“You’ll never trust a map again”

is what BuzzFeed (really, BuzzFeed!?) named this instructionable video on map projections:   The point is not to distrust the map, obviously, but to have the necessary background knowledge in place to properly judge what you see. Actually a good thing to do with respect...


Best images of Earth in 2014

Wired has a slideshow of NASA’s best images of Earth that I’d recommend you to check out if you enjoy images from space! Below is a picture of the spectacular Bowknot Bend of the Green River in Utah (USA), as taken by an unnamed astronaut on...


To all you Geohipsters out there

Have you heard of the Geohipster blog? It’s the self-described place for people who ‘grow their own organic vertices, use gluten-free topology or only geocode by hand, in small batches’. And I give at a big recommendation, put it into your feed reader. And relax, you don’t need to be a...


Geocoding Twitter users – The #SwissGIS map

Recently, I’ve been experimenting with some Twitter-oriented hacks together with my friend Tom. A very preliminary result of these activities is what I call the #SwissGIS map. Some, just a little, history: Over the last few years, I have been collecting Switzerland-based Twitter users that talk about topics...


Be nice to your sysadmin

Sysadmin Appreciation Day was exactly two months ago, but this gem shared by Bill Morris is too good to pass up on: (source) Then there’s of course also this classic by Randall Munroe: (source)

Zurich Sky: Web-scraped sky colour over Zurich, Switzerland 2

Zurich Sky

… is the title of my most recent project. It’s a bit artsy, but I think some of the concepts behind it may also have practical applications in this world of ever more abundant webcam footage (maybe need to think a bit more on this...


Topography in typography

Neat idea by artist Siyu Cao: a typeface from topographic map excerpts. Hills, ridges and mountains signify letters’ bodies, lakes and low areas the empty spaces around and within letters. The typeface gains clarity when extruded to 3D: Made me wonder how a relief-shaded 2D...


Chinese names of European countries

A while ago I proposed etymologic cartography as a field of study. Somewhat related, I found this map that doesn’t show the etymology of placenames but literal translations of country names into English from Chinese: Note: I have no way of checking the correctness of...


Etymologic cartography

I propose Etymologic cartography as a field of study: Somebody had the simple but appealing idea to simply translate the toponyms on a map to English. In this case the subject in question is the USA: Some of the names are rather interesting (and were...