…just a few months after releasing my map, Russia decided to change the time in most of the country. Since Russia extends to about 3.5% of the world’s area and 11.5% of the emerged lands area, the issue was too obvious to ignore.
Apart from this big change, the new map reflects that some territories in Ukraine and Georgiafollow Moscow time instead of their countries’ timezone, and the introduction of the “Southeast” timezone (permanent UTC-05:00) in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Continental Mexico is about 30 degrees of longitude wide, from Tijuana to Cancun, so two timezones would make sense, instead it has four!
Cities used to grow by accident. Sure, the location usually made sense—someplace defensible, on a hill or an island, or somewhere near an extractable resource or the confluence of two transport routes. But what happened next was ad hoc. The people who worked in the fort or the mines or the port or the warehouses needed places to eat, to sleep, to worship. Infrastructure threaded through the hustle and bustle—water, sewage, roads, trolleys, gas, electricity—in vast networks of improvisation. You can find planned exceptions: Alexandria, Roman colonial towns, certain districts in major Chinese cities, Haussmann’s Paris. But for the most part it was happenstance, luck, and layering the new on top of the old.
At least, that’s the way things worked for most of human history.
From 1951, over four decades, the US government carried out almost a thousand nuclear tests at this test site, earning it the nickname of the “most bombed place on Earth”. Here, they took the crude nuclear weapons that had been dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 and honed their destructive power.
The islands mainly deal with fish and gardens powered by solar panels. The development has assured farmers an extra mass of floating 2.2 million square feet of farming space. The multidimensional barges-like farms are created by the Forward Thinking Architecture, a firm in Barcelona.
There are some more surprising findings, however. The British attachment to rail travel is clear. It has the world’s 17th largest rail network, at 17,732km, despite being just the 78th largest nation by land area. That figure was once as high as 34,000km.
Romania’s 22,298km network is also impressive, putting it 15th on the list, even though it is only the world’s 81st largest country.