Is it deceptive to follow conventional wisdom for many years?
"The notion that north should always be up and east at the right was established by the Egyptian astronomer Ptolemy (90-168 AD). "Perhaps this was because the better-known places in his world were in the northern hemisphere, and on a flat map these were most convenient for study if they were in the upper right-hand corner," historian Daniel Boorstin opines. Mapmakers haven’t always followed Ptolemy; during the Middle Ages, Boorstin notes, maps often had east on top–whence the expression "to orient." But north prevailed over the long haul. By the time Southern Hemispheroids had become numerically significant enough to bitch, the north-side-up convention was too well established to change."
On maps, why is north always up? from The Straight Dope>>
Buy a different version of an upside down map (not the same as the one shown) from the Boulder Map Gallery>>