It is the first satellite map of Earth, showing
the real world as it appears from space.
The work required one year of effort by Van Sant and his technical
the world's most powerful graphics computers.
The image was first published as the title page of the 1990 National Geographic World Atlas.
Since 1991 it has been adopted by all U.S. federal agencies, has been published in
over 300 magazines
and atlases, and is the largest selling image in the world.