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Fascinating Maps Prove San Francisco Is Just As Hilly Underwater As It Is on Land

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Stunning new maps of the seafloor off of California's coastline have emerged from a years-long effort to chart our coast's underwater depths using all manner of technologies, from swath sonar data to something called acoustic backscatter to regular old photos and video. According to Wired, the maps have the potential to be used to study things like coastal erosion, sea-level rise, and earthquake hazards, and they've already told us that the San Andreas fault is located about 800 meters from where everyone always thought it was.

The maps are obviously important, but they're also just really sweet to look at. And their crazy, scientifically color-coded topography reminds us of, well, Lombard Street, proving that the parts of SF we can't see are just as trippy as those we can.

· New Maps Reveal California's Sensational Seafloor Geography [Wired]
· Cool Synesthetic Map Turns SF's Topography into Rainbows [Curbed SF]