Navigate The Internet On This Stunning Antique Map Of The Online World

Take a trip to the Yahoo Ice Shelf or visit the Island of Memes.

An artist has mapped the Internet, literally. According to this amazingly detailed feat of imaginative cartography, posted on the social network deviantART, you could navigate the “Ocean of Information” only to find yourself adrift on the northern island of Wikipedia (it looks a little like Greenland).


Map of the Internet 1.0” is a bit pointless but certainly fun to look at. Each landmass takes on the name of a popular English-language website or web service and is kinda sorta scaled to its popularity.

As the map explains: “Relative scale of websites doesn’t always reflect exact relative Internet traffic of these websites, however, often it does, so this map still attains credible levels of informativeness, and can be used for relatively safe and sound online navigation.”

According to the creator’s description, the map is divided into two parts–the “Old World” of the east, featuring software, gaming, and other “real-life” oriented websites, and the “New World” of the west, depicting social networks, blogs, forums, and adult-oriented sites among many others. Just near the Yahoo ice shelf, the southern continent contains obsolete sites ranging from Livejournal, Homestar Runner, and Ask Jeeves to “iDisk” and Microsoft Home. (Here is a version you can zoom in on).

The whole thing only gets more detailed from there, including an amazing number of cities, ocean currents (or “torrents”), rivers, and lakes all with references to Internet culture, and bonus lists, infographics, timelines and more maps off to the sides (one refers to Internet penetration rates around the real world, and another the state of NSA surveillance).

The project is the brainchild of a graphic design student in Slovakia, who writes that he’s an amateur and makes fantasy maps as a hobby in his spare time. This one took him three weeks. He was inspired by a 2010 cartoon on xkcd, which showed the most popular social networks as countries and regions. For the map geeks out there, it’s a base map inspired by National Geographic’s style and uses a Winkel Tripel Projection.

This is only 1.0, and the artist, who lists his name as “Martin Vargic/Jay Jason Simons” plans to keep updating it. Its also for sale as a print on Zazzle.

About the author

Jessica Leber is a staff editor and writer for Fast Company's Co.Exist. Previously, she was a business reporter for MIT’s Technology Review and an environmental reporter at ClimateWire.