Thanks to Numenius, I ran across the photoblog Everydot from my part of the world:

Every dot on the map interests me, especially the little tiny ones. Some “towns” are no more than an intersection, possibly with a store or a town hall. A few towns seem to be gone without a trace, though sometimes the tiniest evidence remains. I have photographed over 300 towns, mostly in Minnesota and North Dakota. I also have photographed a number of towns in Manitoba, Ontario, and Washington, as well as a couple in Wisconsin, South Dakota, and Iowa.

His attention to “every dot” counters the tendency of maps to impose an abstract system of valuation on places, a system in which big dots gather power and attention at the expense of little dots. While his statement “I’d like to finish North Dakota first, as it seems the easiest to conquer” seems to run counter to the more egalitarian premise of his project, I’m trying to not take offense as a North Dakota native. I suppose its just a matter of quantity in this case, not quality.


4 responses to “Everydot”

  1. I only meant that North Dakota has fewer towns than Minnesota, and not that it would be easy to invade or anything. In fact, I would imagine North Dakota would be rather hard to invade, given all the missile silos and air bases. The missile silos are, by the way, subject of a very cool film called Buffalo Common, by one of my favorite photographers, Bill Brown.

  2. No offense taken, of course. And your point about the missiles is a good one. I like to pull that one out when people ask me about ND. At one point someone told me that if ND became it’s own country, it would be the third most powerful in the world, a tall tale I like to perpetuate just for fun. I’ll definitely try to get my hands on Buffalo Commons–sounds great.