Cahill’s Butterfly Map vs. Fuller’s Dymaxion Projection
“I love Bucky, but Cahill’s map is a lot better.” That’s how Gene Keyes opens his latest project, which he describes as “an interlinked set of 17 profusely illustrated web pages detailing the evolution and defects of Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion map. I contrast it with the octahedral projection of B. J. S. Cahill (1866-1944), published in 1909, and developed over a thirty-year period.” Gene, the person behind the B.J.S. Cahill Butterfly Map Resource Page (which I told you about two years ago), is understandably partisan about Cahill’s map (above left) — but, he says, that’s not to say that he’s got a hate on for the Dymaxion (above right):
My purpose here is not to diminish Fuller, but to show that if Cahill had already made a better map than such a visionary as Bucky, it is a feather in Cahill’s cap, not a demerit for the Dymaxion. Fuller’s map was a milestone toward the invention of the geodesic dome: achievement enough. But his map is a poor teaching tool which does not match well with a globe, and that is where Cahill succeeds.
And you thought Gall-Peters vs. Mercator was the only cartographic feud out there.
But 17 pages? That’s almost as long as one of those online camera reviews.