Friday, August 1, 2014

The McMap of the US

At the start of a class, I would put up this picture:

The description would have been removed and I would offer extra credit test points to the first person that could tell me what this picture represented.  They came up with a lot of answers - the US, cities in the US, cell phone towers, Facebook users, and on and on.  Eventually, someone would get it right - every McDonald's in the contiguous United States.  Wow!

That is a lot of McDonald'ses.  They are everywhere.  I really like the brighter spots that show you the locations of cities.  You can see Raleigh-Durham, Greensboro, and Charlotte pretty clearly.  Stephen Von Worley constructed this map in 2009 to demonstrate the our collective proximity to the fast-food chain.  To be clear, the map has actually changed since then.  Von Worley also determined the McFarthurest spot - the place on the map furtherest from any McDonald's.  If you ever visit Glad Valley, South Dakota, you would have to drive about 145 miles to buy a Big Mac!

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