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Visualizing the Average Flag of the World

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Visualizing the Average Flag of the World

Visualizing the Average Flag of the World

The intersection of data visualization and art is the perfect place to experiment.

In today’s graphic from Reddit user Udzu, flags serve as the visual raw material for experimentation. The visualization uses flags to show the “weight” of a country’s population or land area within its respective region – a unique thought exercise worth digging into.

Vexillology, Visualized

When all the world’s flags are averaged, the result is a hazy rectangle with outlines of popular flag layouts (e.g. tricolor, triband). That said, one feature that does stand out is the Union Jack in the top left corner, showing that Great Britain’s historical influence lives on even through flag design.

Russia, even with its landmass divided in two, is prominent on both Europe and Asia’s area-weighted graphics.

Interestingly, Udzu also repeated the process using U.S. state flags. As one would expect, California and Texas dominate the population-weighted image. In the area-weighted version, Alaska’s big dipper flag and the word “Montana” become more prominent.

us state flags mean

Examining the Building Blocks of Flags

Flags are fascinating for a number of reasons.

They’re loaded with history, charged with patriotic pride, and commonalities between flags often signal connections between the people who live in those respective countries.

These serious considerations aside, flags are fun to look at from a design perspective. There are nearly two hundred official countries in the world, and many of them embrace similarly minimalist flag layouts. As a result, it’s no surprise that some of them are strikingly similar.

similar flags

Source: Flag Stories

With many similar colors and layouts in the roster of national flags, it seems like every combination is taken.

However, as the visualization below identifies, a few specific combinations are still up for grabs.

flag design matrix cube

Source: Flag Stories

In case anyone out there is thinking of forming a new country, combining elements from different flags is a valid approach. Joking aside, the Union Jack really was created by combining aspects of the three older national flags of England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

flag combinations

Source: Flag Stories

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Economy

Mapped: Indian States with Cities Over 1 Million People

Ten Indian states—most of them from the northeast region of the country—don’t have a single city with 1 million residents.

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A cropped map of Indian states and the number of 1 million+ cities in them.

Mapped: Indian States with Cities Over 1 Million People

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

Slightly more than one-third of the 1.4 billion Indian population lives in an urban area. So where are the country’s most populous cities, and how are they spread across the country’s 28 states and eight union territories?

This map shows the number of Indian urban agglomerations (cities) with more than a million residents in each jurisdiction. Data for this graphic is sourced from 2024 urban agglomeration estimates in the UN World Urbanization Prospects.

Ranked: Indian States by Cities with 1M Residents

India’s Uttar Pradesh state has 10 cities with a population size of 1 million or more. It is also India’s most populous state, home to 240 million people. This makes it comparable to the size of Pakistan, the fifth most populous country in the world.

Indian StateCities with 1M Residents (2024)City Names
Uttar Pradesh10Lucknow, Kanpur, Agra, Meerut,
Varanasi, Prayagraj,
Bareilly, Aligarh,
Moradabad, Saharanpur
Kerala7Kozhikode,
Malappuram,
Thrissur, Kochi,
Thiruvananthapura,
Kannur, Kollam
Maharashtra6Mumbai, Pune,
Nagpur, Nashik,
Aurangabad, Solapur
Tamil Nadu6Chennai, Coimbatore,
Madurai, Tiruppur,
Tiruchirappalli, Salem
Gujarat4Ahmedabad, Surat,
Vadodara, Rajkot
Madhya Pradesh4Indore, Bhopal,
Jabalpur, Gwalior
Jharkhand3Jamshedpur, Ranchi,
Dhanbad
Karnataka3Bengaluru, Mysore,
Hubli-Dharwad
Punjab3Ludhiana, Amritsar,
Jalandhar
Rajasthan3Jaipur, Jodhpur, Kota
West Bengal3Kolkata, Asansol, Siliguri
Andhra Pradesh2Visakhapatnam,
Vijayawada
Chhattisgarh2Raipur, Durg-Bhilainagar
Telangana2Hyderabad, Warangal
Assam1Guwahati
Bihar1Patna
Odisha1Bhubaneswar
Uttarakhand1Dehradun
Chandigarh*1Chandigargh
Delhi*1New Delhi
Jammu & Kashmir*1Srinagar

*Union Territories. Figures rounded. Some city names may have changed since this data was published.

Further south, Kerala (7), Maharashtra (6), and Tamil Nadu (6) also have more than five cities with a million or more people.

Meanwhile, some cities, including India’s national capital, New Delhi, are either in or are themselves union territories—areas directly administered by the central government.

Ten Indian states—most of them from the country’s northeast region—don’t have a single city with 1 million residents.

All together, India has 65 cities with more than one million inhabitants. For comparison, China has 105, and the U.S. has nine.

RankCityState/Union Territory2024 Population
Estimates
1New DelhiDelhi*34M
2MumbaiMaharashtra22M
3KolkataWest Bengal16M
4BengaluruKarnataka14M
5ChennaiTamil Nadu12M
6HyderabadTelangana11M
7AhmadabadGujarat9M
8SuratGujarat8M
9PuneMaharashtra7M
10JaipurRajasthan4M
11KozhikodeKerala4M
12MalappuramKerala4M
13LucknowUttar Pradesh4M
14ThrissurKerala4M
15KochiKerala4M
16IndoreMadhya Pradesh3M
17KanpurUttar Pradesh3M
18NagpurMaharashtra3M
19CoimbatoreTamil Nadu3M
20ThiruvananthapuramKerala3M
21PatnaBihar3M
22BhopalMadhya Pradesh3M
23AgraUttar Pradesh3M
24KannurKerala2M
25VisakhapatnamAndhra Pradesh2M
26VadodaraGujarat2M
27NashikMaharashtra2M
28VijayawadaAndhra Pradesh2M
29KollamKerala2M
30RajkotGujarat2M
31LudhianaPunjab2M
32MaduraiTamil Nadu2M
33RaipurChhattisgarh2M
34MeerutUttar Pradesh2M
35VaranasiUttar Pradesh2M
36SrinagarJammu & Kashmir*2M
37TiruppurTamil Nadu2M
38JamshedpurJharkhand2M
39AurangabadMaharashtra2M
40JodhpurRajasthan2M
41RanchiJharkhand2M
42KotaRajasthan2M
43JabalpurMadhya Pradesh2M
44AsansolWest Bengal2M
45GwaliorMadhya Pradesh2M
46AllahabadUttar Pradesh2M
47AmritsarPunjab1M
48DhanbadJharkhand1M
49BareillyUttar Pradesh1M
50AligarhUttar Pradesh1M
51MoradabadUttar Pradesh1M
52MysoreKarnataka1M
53Durg-BhilainagarChhattisgarh1M
54BhubaneswarOdisha1M
55TiruchirappalliTamil Nadu1M
56ChandigarhChandigarh*1M
57SaharanpurUttar Pradesh1M
58Hubli-DharwadKarnataka1M
59GuwahatiAssam1M
60SalemTamil Nadu1M
61SiliguriWest Bengal1M
62JalandharPunjab1M
63SolapurMaharashtra1M
64WarangalTelangana1M
65DehradunUttarakhand1M

*Union Territories. Figures rounded. Some city names may have changed since this data was published.

Interestingly, three of the five most populous Indian cities (Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chennai) were villages that became key British trading outposts. As a result all three cities have a fort within their city limits which acted as protection against competing colonial interests at the time.

Finally, Uttar Pradesh—which leads the states by number of cities with 1M people—doesn’t have a single metropolis within the top 10.

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