Natural Earth Projection
The Natural Earth projection is intended for making world maps. It was originally designed in Flex Projector using graphical methods and now exists as a polynomial version. With the source code available here, developers can implement the Natural Earth projection in their software.

A distinguishing trait is its slightly rounded corners fashioned to emulate the spherical shape of Earth. The meridians (except for the central meridian) bend acutely inward as they approach the pole lines, giving the projection a hint of three-dimensionality. This bending also suggests that the meridians converge at the poles instead of truncating at the top and bottom edges. The distortion characteristics of the Natural Earth projection compare favorably to other world map projections.

We invite you to add the Natural Earth projection to your GIS or mapping software.

Tom Patterson, US National Park Service, Harpers Ferry, WV, USA
Bernhard Jenny, Institute of Cartography and Geoinformation, ETH Zürich, Switzerland
Bojan Šavrič, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

The Natural Earth projection is now included in the PROJ.4 cartographic projections library.

Software applications that include or will include the Natural Earth projection in a future version:

MAPublisher / Geographic Imager
Natural Scene Designer