Genome vs. Blueprint

Image: 1936 Joy Oil gas station blueprints (top); sequence from human chromosome 1 (bottom).
Source: from A Monkey’s Blueprint by Martin Krzywinski on SA Visual

When artist Martin Krzywinski was challenged to come up with a graphic that quickly and concisely shows how the human genome is more similar to chimpanzee and bonobo genomes than to the gorilla genome, he faced many hurdles – from combating the idea that a genome is a type of blueprint to the technical constraints of depicting the 3 million bases that comprise our genome. In A Monkey’s Blueprint, Krzywinski walks us through the process that eventually led to images that appeared in the September 2014 issue of Scientific American.