[ Ptolemy’s world map reconstituted from Ptolemy’s Geography (circa 150) in the 15th century ]

In this digital world, with the promise of immersive 3D experiences, we tend to forget that for such a long time we only had ink on paper. We now think of this static, flat medium as a second class citizen, but in fact over the hundreds of years we’ve been writing and printing, we’ve managed to achieve an incredible wealth of knowledge and practices to represent data on the page. While interactive charts, data visualizations and infographics are all the rage, they forego many of the best-practices we’ve learned. Only when you look back through the history of accomplished charts and graphs can we understand that bank of knowledge and bring it forward into new mediums.

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