The map above shows one the craziest facts about the world: there are more people living inside the circle than outside of it. However, that’s not the only thing the circle contains.
Inside the circle you’ll also find:
- The highest mountain (Everest)
- The deepest ocean trench (Mariana)
- More Muslims than outside of it.
- More Hindus than outside of it.
- More Buddhists than outside of it.
- More communists than outside of it.
- The least sparsely populated country on earth (Mongolia)
However, in terms of religions you’d still find more Christians and Jews outside the circle than inside it.
And while the map looks surprising at first glance, it shouldn’t really once you consider it contains all or most of the world’s first (China), second (India), fourth (Indonesia), sixth (Pakistan), seventh (Bangladesh) and tenth (Japan) most populous countries.
For something similarly shocking have a look at: How Much of Humanity is on Your Side of World?
The pedantic among you might claim that while the section of the map above looks like a circle (where every point on the border is equidistant from the centre) on the actual earth it wouldn’t be.
Instead it would look something like this:
BCMM explains that:
Due to the way this map projection (Winkel-tripel) distorts the world*, a real-world circle does not usually appear as a circle on the map.
This is a real-world circle centred on 106.6° East, 26.6° North, projected using GMT. More than half the world’s population lives within 4100km of Guiyang, Guizhou Province, Southwest China.
To make it a proper circle while still including Japan and India, I had to trade a lot of sea for extra land. Consequently, my circle has probably tens of millions more people than valeriepieris’s.
Additions comprise parts of Afghanistan, the less-populous end of Khazakstan, all of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, the most densely-populated parts of Uzbekhistan, and a large, sparsely-populated section of Siberia.
* This isn’t a criticism; all projections distort. This one is non-conformal.
If you found that interesting, you’ll love: Map Projections & What They Say About You.
Want to learn more about world population? Then have a look at the following books:
- Population Wars: A New Perspective on Competition and Coexistence
- Global Population: History, Geopolitics, and Life on Earth
- An Essay on the Principle of Population
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