Connections and Content

Connections and Content

Reflections on Networks and the History of Cartography

Mark Monmonier


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Behind every great map is a network and behind every great network is a map.

In Connections and Content: Reflections on Networks and the History of Cartography, cartographic cogitator Mark Monmonier shares his insights about the relationships between networks and maps. Using historical maps, he explores:

  • Triangulation networks that established the baselines to set a map’s scale
  • Astronomical observations, ellipsoids, geodetic arcs, telegraph networks, and GPS constellations that put latitude and longitude on the map
  • Cartographic symbols that portray a diverse range of network features
  • Survey networks used to situate and construct canals, railways, roads, and power lines
  • Postal and electronic networks that created and disseminated weather maps, and
  • Topological networks that underlie modern census enumeration and satellite navigation systems.

Connecting the past to the present via maps and reflection, Monmonier continues his contribution to cartographic scholarship by exploring the network's power as a unifying concept for understanding and using maps.