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Page for My AP Human Geography Course
Curated by Dean Haakenson
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The surprising math of cities and corporations

"Physicist Geoffrey West has found that simple, mathematical laws govern the properties of cities — that wealth, crime rate, walking speed and many other aspects of a city can be deduced from a single number: the city's population. In this mind-bending talk from TEDGlobal he shows how it works and how similar laws hold for organisms and corporations."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 4, 2:44 PM

While corporations rise and fall, it is quite rare for a city to entirely fail as an economic system.  Huge cities have some negative consequences, but the networks that operate in the city function more efficiently on economies of scale in a way that offsets the negatives.  Increasing a city's population will continue to improve the economies of scale (larger cities have higher wages per capita, more creative employment per capita, etc.).  However, this growth requires major technological innovations to sustain long-term growth.  

 

Tagsurban, planningmegacities, industry, economic, scaleTED, video.

Van Brienen Networks Ed van den Berg's curator insight, December 14, 3:17 PM

Not surprisingly the DNA of cities is a follow-up of human DNA and understanding this will explain and predict how the body of a city will develop!

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Making Sense of Maps

TED Talks Map designer Aris Venetikidis is fascinated by the maps we draw in our minds as we move around a city -- less like street maps, more like schematics or wiring diagrams, abstract images of relationships between places.

 

This video touches on numerous themes that are crucial to geographers including: 1) how our minds arrange spatial information, 2) how to best graphically represent spatial information in a useful manner for your audience and 3) how mapping a place can be the impetus for changing outdated systems. This is the story of how a cartographer working to improve a local transportation system map, which in turn, started city projects to improve the infrastructure and public utilities in Dublin, Ireland. This cartographer argues that the best map design for a transport system needs to conform to how on cognitive mental mapping works more so than geographic accuracy (like so many subway maps do).

 

Tags: transportation, urban, mapping, cartography, planning, TED, video, unit 7 cities.


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Jesse Gauthier's comment, October 14, 2012 3:42 PM
When trying to graphically represent spatial information in a useful manner for your particular audience, you will have a lot to take into consideration. How familiar are the travelers with the area you map out? Are there visuals to precisely mark on the map so that will they accurately correspond to the area?
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If Roads Were Like Bike Lanes

If Roads Were Like Bike Lanes | Haak's APHG | Scoop.it
For those brief moments that you happen to be in a bike lane, biking in the city is wonderful. But it always seems that bike lanes end before they even begin, just like a summer romance or a slice ...

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, November 10, 9:14 AM

It's just a joke, but good comedy has a nugget of truth that shines a light on the inconsistencies of the human experience.  This really highlights the priorities given to various modes of transportation as we allocate public space for them. 


Tags: transportation, planning.