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This global map shows where the internet lives

A crowdsource project maps every data center, internet exchange, connecting cable and switch that makes up the cloud.


This map of North America shows thousands of data centers, telephone poles, and other physical manifestations of the cloud.

Screenshot by David Priest/CNET

A crowdsource project aims to map the internet, or at least, the physical infrastructure that supports it.

"The New Cloud Atlas" project is in the process of mapping the location of anything of "physical significance in the operation of the cloud," according to the project's website. That means warehouse data centers, connecting cables, internet exchanges and switches -- all compiled on one shared global map.

The name, The New Cloud Atlas, harkens back to an 1896 project called the International Cloud Atlas. This original publication, organized by the International Meteorological Congress, allowed observatories to share weather data and track systems across international boundaries.

While this new project is substantively different from its namesake, the spirit seems to be shared.