For more than 250 years, humanity has been weaving a tangled web of transportation around the world. This global network is one of the defining features of what scientists have informally dubbed "the Anthropocene," a new geological era characterized by the global impact of human activity.
For as far reaching as that impact is, an untouched photograph of Earth offers little-to-no evidence of humanity's existence. But in Welcome to the Anthropocene — the three minute video featured up top, created by the folks at Globaia — the last 250 years of humanity's sprawl is writ large in the form of a rapidly expanding mesh of cities, roads, and shipping routes over land and sea alike. It's a stunning reminder of how far our species has come, and makes one wonder where we stand to go from here.
You can find more information on this video, including hi-res stills, data sources (including NASA, NOAA, and others), beautiful data visualizations and more, over on Globaia.