Unit Two- World Regional Geography

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Cartography

The art, science, and technology of making maps

contour line

along which all points are of equal elevation above a datum plane, usually mean sea level. imaginary lines, perhaps best thought of as the outlines
that would occur if a series of parallel, equally spaced horizontal slices were made through a vertical feature

grid system

a set of imaginary lines that intersect at right angles to form a system of reference for locating points on the surface of the earth.

International Date Line

where each new day begins, generally follows the 180th meridian.

latitude

is the angular distance north or south of the equator, measured in degrees ranging from 0 ° (the equator) to 90 ° (the North and South Poles).

longitude

the angular distance east or west of the prime (zero) meridian measured in degrees ranging from 0 ° to 180 °.

map projection

designates the way the curved surface of the globe is represented on a flat map. All flat maps distort, in different ways and to different degrees, some or all of the four main properties of actual earth surface relationships: area, shape, distance, and direction

prime meridian

an imaginary line passing through the Royal Observa-
tory at Greenwich, England. This prime meridian was selected as the zero-degree longitude by an international conference in 1884.

scale

is the ratio between the mea-surement of something on the map and the corresponding measurement on the earth. Scale is typically represented in one of three ways: verbally, graphically, or numerically as a representative fraction

shaded relief

A cartographic technique that provides an apparent three-dimensional configuration of the terrain on maps and charts by the use of graded shadows that would be cast by high ground if light were shining from the northwest. Shaded relief is usually used in combination with contours. See also hill shading.

topographic map

general-purpose maps depict the shape and elevation of the terrain. These include transportation routes, buildings, and such land uses as orchards, vineyards, and cemeteries. Many types of boundaries, from state borders to field or airport lim-its, are also depicted on topographic maps.

What important map and globe reference purpose does the prime meridian serve? Is the prime, or any other, meridian determined in nature or devised by humans? How is the prime meridian designated or recognized?

an imaginary line passing through the Royal Observa-
tory at Greenwich, England. This prime meridian was selected as the zero-degree longitude by an international conference in 1884. 0 degrees, designates east and west.

What happens to the length of a degree of longitude as one nears the North and South Poles? What happens to a degree of latitude between the equator and the poles?

distance between adjacent degrees of longitude decreases away from the equator because the meridians converge at the poles. With the exception of a few Alaskan islands, all places in North and South America are in the area of west longitude; with the exception of a portion of the Chukchi Peninsula of Siberia, all places in Asia and Australia have east longitude. Lat-The polar circumference of the earth is 24,899 miles; thus, the distance between degrees of latitude equals 24,899 ÷ 360, or about 111 kilometers (69 mi). If the earth were a perfect sphere, all degrees of latitude would be equally long. Due to the slight flattening of the earth in polar regions, however, degrees of latitude are slightly longer near the poles

What is the purpose of a contour line? What is a contourinterval? What landscape feature is implied by closely spaced contours?

principal symbol used to show elevation on topographic maps. is the vertical spacing between contour lines, and it is normally stated on the map. The more irregular the surface, usually, the greater is the number of contour lines that will need to be drawn; the steeper the slope, the closer are the contour lines rendering that slope.

What is the difference between a large and a small scale map? Explain with examples. (Note that the word large scale DOES NOT refer to the area represented on the map! The word large refers to the scale of the map (see scale). You must know the difference and be able to explain and give examples). A map of Sioux City, IA is a large scale map. Why?

A large-scale map, such as a plan of a city, shows an area in considerable detail. That is, the ratio of map to ground distance is relatively large. Small-scale maps, such as those of countries or continents, have
a much smaller ratio. Buildings, roads, and other small features cannot be drawn to scale and must be magnified and represented by symbols to be seen. large-shows more detail.

How is a Mercator map distorted? Explain. Do you remember seeing Alaska and Greenland on a (two-dimensional Mercator map) in school? How do they differ from their shape/area on a globe? Do you know what a "projection" is? (How are three-dimensional surfaces such as the "globe" transferred to a two-dimensional surface? What happens if you took an orange and smashed it flat? Explain and compare to a 3-D to 2-D conversion (globe to 2-D map)).

the Mercator projection distorts the size and shape of large objects, as the scale increases from the Equator to the poles, where it becomes infinite. map projection designates the way the curved sur-
face of the globe is represented on a flat map. All flat maps distort, in different ways and to different degrees, some or all of the four main properties of actual earth surface relationships: area, shape, distance, and direction.

When the first astronauts viewed the Earth from space they noticed it was quite different from school room globes. In what ways did the real Earth differ from the school room globe (refer to a picture of the Earth from space)?

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