Photo Credit: DiasporaEngager, the World's #1 International Diaspora Engagement Social Media Network Platform (www.DiasporaEngager.com), by Courtesy of Dr. Roland Holou. © All Rights reserved.
Photo Credit: DiasporaEngager, the World's #1 International Diaspora Engagement Social Media Network Platform (www.DiasporaEngager.com), by Courtesy of Dr. Roland Holou. © All Rights reserved.

“This was probably the hardest to make,” says Lutz, who combined five different data sets to produce this image of every known thing in our solar system with a diameter bigger than 10 kilometers. At first she struggled with distinguishing all the different orbits. Every scale she tried ended up smushing the asteroids into the planets or leaving out asteroids that were farther away from the sun. In her tutorial, she explains that the universe isn’t arranged by linear distances. Instead it’s logarithmic, with exponentially more objects situated close to the sun. Lutz made use of this observation to space out their various orbits, including those of 18,000 asteroids and comets.

In this map Lutz compares constellations from ancient cultures around the world. Using data from Stellarium, an open-source astronomy software project, Lutz mapped out color-coded constellations from 33 different ancient cultures, such as the Maori and the Dakota. The map shows every star visible to the human eye, along with its brightness and popularity across cultures. “These world constellations are based on historical evidence updated by volunteers, so they may not be true to the exact names or patterns, especially those from hundreds of years in the past,” says Lutz. “But I think they’re still a great illustration of human creativity and our shared fascination with the sky.”

Lutz’s biology research focuses on how mosquitoes navigate their environments. That’s not quite the same as an animated map of Earth, but the projects share the fundamental goal of translating complex scientific information. “I guess if you boil it down maps are just a way of information processing that’s made visual.” This map shows changing cloud, sun and Arctic ice patterns. Using data from 2004, Lutz created animations with twelve frames, one for each month of the year. The central image shows the ebb and flow of Arctic sea ice throughout the year—white with ice during the coldest months and green with vegetation during the summer.

“I really like the illustration style of old-timey maps when people were still exploring the Earth and trying to understand the basic geography of where we live,” says Lutz. She brings a Victorian sensibility to her topographical map of Mercury with its elegant leaf-like flourishes, a visual allusion to humans’ long obsession with exploration. ”Even though this data about planets and space is relatively new in the past hundreds of years, this kind of impetus or curiosity to understand where we live is not a new thing.” In this map, she carefully notes the planet’s valleys, peaks, and landmarks. The resulting image is detailed enough that you can imagine an explorer on a trip to Mercury’s Eastern Hemisphere consulting it for directions.

“I really like the illustration style of old-timey maps when people were still exploring the Earth and trying to understand the basic geography of where we live,” says Lutz. She brings a Victorian sensibility to her topographical map of Mercury with its elegant leaf-like flourishes, a visual allusion to humans’ long obsession with exploration. ”Even though this data about planets and space is relatively new in the past hundreds of years, this kind of impetus or curiosity to understand where we live is not a new thing.” In this map, she carefully notes the planet’s valleys, peaks, and landmarks. The resulting image is detailed enough that you can imagine an explorer on a trip to Mercury’s Eastern Hemisphere consulting it for directions.

The Source: Sara Harrison. The content of this article does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of Global Diaspora News (www.GlobalDiasporaNews.com).