Wednesday, June 5, 2013

World Globes at the Finale of Amazing Race

by Trey Thomas

Round the world by justin_vidamo, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License  by  justin_vidamo  on Flickr

Imagine you were one of the Battaglia brothers who won The Amazing Race 22 (finale broadcast May 5). You'd surely like a memento of the adventure — in the form of pictures and maps. Bates, the elder Battaglia bro, co-owns a bar at Raleigh, NC, so a large map with markers pinned to The Amazing Race leg points would be a perfect wall display to regale his friends and guests with.

Amazing race map

On your map, the pins could be connected together with colored string, to trace the route of the race. You'll need a fairly large world map, though, if you wish to include more than just cities. However since maps are flat, you'll need to cut the route string into two pieces somewhere. Like this (this one is the route of the Amazing Race 22, created using Google Maps):

Amazing race globe

You can also use a world globe to show off your adventure. World globes have the advantage in that you can pin and string an unbroken route around the "world" but they also present a problem when pinned:
  1. Many globes have a frame, the meridian (half or full), that could strike any pin you stick to the globe — you can solve this by either having your markers perfectly flush with the globe's surface (like a sticker) or getting a globe with no meridian;
  2. Unless you encase the globe in glass, people will turn the globe around. More people touching means the chances of the pins being dislodged would be more likely (unless the 'pins' are stickers flush with the globe surface).

Amazing lighted race

How about having the pins light up in the dark? An easy way is to use glow-in-the-dark pins. However the lights from these pins are relatively faint. How about brighter lights? An elegant way to solve this is by using Lightravels Illuminated Map with Light Pegs.

This map is basically a lightbox with your map in front. Pushing jewel-like pegs through your map makes the light from the light box shine through them, making your markers shine like little light bulbs. This kind of map has an advantage in that that the pegs are pushed close to the surface so they won't be dislodged easily. You could also use different colored pegs if you wish to color-code your travels, say Southeast Asia, Europe and so on. You can also connect these lighted pegs with colored string or yarn.
Checkout this video so you can watch the Lightravels map in action:

There is no globe version of this lighted map yet though.

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