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Interactive maps highlight new exhibit at Chicago’s Field Museum

State-of-the-art large-screen displays are joining ancient Babylonian, Roman and other maps at an exhibition of the world’s greatest maps at Chicago’s Field Museum. “Maps: Finding our Place in the World” runs through Jan. 27, 2008.

One part of the exhibit explores digital maps — from those aiding military operations to everyday tourist, real estate and navigation maps. NEC Display is providing six 46in MultiSync LCD4620 flat-panel displays in a 3ft by 2ft TileMatrix touch-screen configuration. The life-size interactive map wall allows multiple people to simultaneously explore different areas of the world using a large touch screen.

The exhibition includes more than 130 of the world’s greatest maps, including those from ancient Rome and Babylon, cartographers Leonardo da Vinci and Mercator, as well as the great libraries of the world, including the Vatican Library and the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle. The oldest road map of Britain is on display, along with another showing the first boundaries of the new American nation. These maps are juxtaposed with in-car navigation systems powered by Navteq and mobile device applications.

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