2 March 2024

In geography, cartography and in representation systems, scales help to visualize objects or places in a different size from the real one with all its details. In this article, it is explained what is a state scale and what is its function, likewise, the concepts of other scales such as global, national, continental and municipal are mentioned, establishing the differences between them.

Meaning of the scales

The plans and maps are very important in geography to know what is the representation and distribution of the territory and the elements that are located within it. However, when these images are made on maps, pads or sketchbooks, the artist cannot capture the same size land that they have in reality, so they must resort to scales to reduce the ratio.

The word scale is used in geography and cartography in order to represent the proportion between the dimension of an object or real space with respect to a scale drawing. That is, the scale allows to create a smaller representation of an object or land to know the order of distribution, in addition to having it as a reference when studying the measurements and other important information about it.

In this way, the scale plans show the dimensions, which in Spanish translates as measures, which are reflected in a different size, either large or small, depending on the type of scale that is to be represented. What is sought to be drawn on a scale is the distance between two points on the same surface. It is important to note that the scales are represented numerically, for example, a scale plan of a house 1:1000means that each 1 centimeter of the plane is equivalent to 1000 real centimeters.

What is a global scale?

The maps and plans can vary depending on what the artist or draftsman wants to represent on paper, which is why the classification of the scales is extensive, since there is a different one for the amount of territory that you want to cover. In this sense, an example of a global scale is the vision of the globe, where its elements can be identified as the continents and the oceans; Many of these images are created with information in English, because it is useful information for everyone.

What is a continental scale?

Now, when we talk about the continental scale, reference is made to the vision or representation of a specific continent, focusing on the details that exist in that broad terrain. For example, on a map or image of the American continent, it is possible to distinguish the countries and islands that are distributed from Canada to Argentine Patagonia.

Likewise, in this scale drawing it is also possible to appreciate other elements such as the Andes mountains, the names of the seas, the San Andreas Fault and other reliefs.

What is a national scale?

Regarding a national scale, the extension of the map, image or scale drawing is reduced to a single nation or State, therefore, it is feasible to make visible aspects that are not observed on a continental scale. These plans detail the names of the regions and provincessome tourist sites such as squares, beaches or national monuments, in the same way, there are demarcated the main routes through which the population of said country can move.

What is a state scale?

A state scale refers to a series of measures used by the government of a country or a State to make the graphic representation of certain spaces that are in said territory. In this sense, the state scale covers a smaller range of land than the national one, although the latter can present more information and details of some elements, as happens with maps. For example, one observes names of rivers, roads, restaurantsparks, squares and other tourist sites.

On the other hand, a state scale is used so that the leaders of a State or province can measure and verify the capacity of their government to offer and provide services to the people. In this sense, this is another type of scale that is used in the economy where a relationship is made between the number of inhabitants of a territory and its Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita. So, the relationship says that the more inhabitants there are, the more resources are required to satisfy the needs of the population.

What is a municipal scale?

The municipal scale shows on a scale map the distribution of a single municipality of a certain town along with relevant information about it. For example, the Municipality of Denia in the interior of the Valencian Community, where you can see its beaches, ports, squares and other sites. In the same way, in certain images where a municipal scale is shown, information can be added such as the law of the autonomous community, police points or the places where the IRPF tax is collected.

It should be noted that this is not the smallest scale that can be represented, since it is feasible to focus on a single town or look at specific sites as a square or a churchwhere, there would no longer be talk of maps, but of plans.

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