Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The Rumsey Map Islands

By Deaflegacy

I found the David Rumsey Map to be beyond breath-taking. It shows maps of many different places in a historic view. People from many places in real life have gone here to explore many areas on these historical maps. Some have even stopped by the World Push Pin Map and pushed a pin to where they are. The place is simply remarkable.

Besides seeing modern-day maps, residents get a chance to view antique maps. By going to the David Rumsey Maps, it will take you to many places, this time in virtual worlds. If anyone is curious about these unique maps, I would encourage them to go to this place.

Taking a look at one of the notecards there, it had this to say:

The David Rumsey Collection was started nearly 20 years ago, and focuses primarily on cartography of the Americas from the 18th and 19th centuries, but also has maps of the World, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Oceania. The collection includes atlases, globes, school geographies, books, maritime charts, and a variety of separate maps, including pocket, wall, children's and manuscript. Digitization of the project began in 1997. 

The project was undertaken for numerous reasons: Maps are uniquely suitable to high-resolution scanning because they contain large amounts of detailed information, which can be seen more readily when the viewer is able to zoom in and enlarge images on a computer screen. Viewed over the Internet, rare maps become available to those who previously had no access to such collections or were not aware of the maps' existence. In their original form, maps and atlases can be large, delicate, and unwieldy. Digitization increases their accessibility, and combined with an online catalog allows the viewer a variety of ways to search the collection. Presenting individual maps in a digital format literally breaks the boundaries of an atlas's bookbinding, allowing the viewer to view single maps independent of their original encasing. With Luna Imaging's Insight® software, the maps are experienced in a revolutionary way. Multiple maps from different time periods can be viewed side-by-side. Or, the end user can create their own collection of maps by saving groups of images that hold particular interest. Complete cataloging data accompanies every image, allowing for in-depth searches of the collection. Materials that were created in America and that illustrate the evolution of the country's history, culture, and population distinguish the collection. 

Close inspection of the maps often reveals the rise and fall of towns, mining excavations, the unfolding of the railroads, and the "discovery" of the American West by European explorers. The collection also includes European imprints containing maps of the Americas that were influential to American cartographers, as well as maps of other parts of the world distinguished by great craftsmanship, significance and beauty.

I would encourage anyone who's interested in maps to go visit the David Rumsey Map Collection. I've been there and it's fantastic.

For more information, check the link to David Rumsey's Second Life page on his website, which includes this video


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