While it’s not for us to suggest that state boundaries are in any way arbitrary, artist Neil Freeman has re-imagined what a map of the US would look like if each and every state had an identical population count.
from the website:
This is a map of every person counted by the 2010 US and 2011 Canadian censuses. The map has 341,817,095 dots – one for each person.
I wanted an image of human settlement patterns unmediated by proxies like city boundaries, arterial roads, state lines, &c. Also, it was an interesting challenge.
The dots are very small. Try zooming in.
The census reported that someone lived there.
The census reported that someone lives in a block which includes a lake, and that’s where their dot was randomly placed. Also, some people live in the middle of lakes.
Also, even though the author wanted to see settlement trends without boundaries, it’s helpful to use them to find yourself. Turn them on in the upper right corner. Click either map to see the whole site.