Mapping the linked planet

Visualizing Friendships

Just to put things into perspective: I am not a fan of facebook, and I never had an account there. But I like maps, especially strange maps. They always convey a certain bias view of the world, an idea or ideology. So this one done by Paul Butler during his internship at Facebook Engenineerings has become one of my favourites, obviously due to the network-based view of the planet (here is how he did it, a high-resolution version of the map is available here). It’s remarkably similar to the view of the world at night. If you have a closer look, not only continents but several geographical and political influences shaping “our” world become visible. For example, the empty space in the amazonian area and the sahara, or the river nile and its’ delta in egypt. What struck me that except for a few coastal cities (like Hong Kong, presumably) China seems to be absent from this map. Also the former “iron curtain” separating east and west germany is still visible, with Berlin forming an island – so much about the progress of re-unification 2 decades later on.

There is probably a lot more to discover by comparing what you’d expect to what you see – Enjoy! (found via

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