Link About It: This Week’s Picks

Cameras made from drinking straws, the possible return of a classic Nokia, the world's tallest atrium and more

1. Royal Egyptian Scribe’s 3,000-Year-Old Tomb

Dating back to the Ramesside period, around 1200 BCE, a tomb has been unearthed on the west bank of the Nile in Egypt. Japanese archaeologists, led by Waseda University Professor Jiro Kondo, made the discovery and researchers have already deduced that the tomb belonged to Khonsu, a royal scribe. Within, ornate hieroglyphics and ceiling drawings, many of which paid homage to Khonsu, were seen and documented. Professor Kondo believes the area holds many more undiscovered tombs much like the treasure trove he just revealed.

2. Nokia 3310 Might Return

Whether it’s social media fatigue or the brutality of brunch-planning group chats, many reasons present themselves to step back to a less computer-like mobile phone. One of the world’s former favorites—the Nokia 3310—might be making a comeback, according to Evan “Evleaks” Blass. Blass has reported that Nokia owner HMD Global plans to launch an updated version of the 3310. It would be the second “dumb phone” from the brand, since the Nokia 150. The basic handset would retail for a very inexpensive amount and hopefully include many of the features that made it so popular the first time around, including a battery that seems to last forever and the ability to take a fall quite well.

3. Sir Winston Churchill’s Musings on Alien Life

From a recently discovered essay, drafted in the 1939 by Sir Winston Churchill, it has been revealed that in addition to being kept up to date on all scientific research of the time, the revered politician also mused on the existence of extraterrestrial life. Churchill believed that because of the vastness of the universe, there must be many suns with many planets that could potentially house life. This was well before the discovery of exoplanets. Coupling scientific reason with substantial fact—from the importance of water to an understanding of the habitable planetary zone—Churchill makes the case. It’s assumed that the Prime Minster had intended to publish this essay, which would ultimately get donated to Fulton, Missouri’s US National Churchill Museum.

4. National Geographic’s New Book Celebrates 128 Years of Infographics

National Geographic was founded way back in 1888, and now it’s celebrating 128 years of infographics with a new book published by Taschen. Despite being around long before the technological advancements we’re now used to, NatGeo has always been a respected publication, and the journey through retro illustrations and graphics adds a certain charm. The book is divided into the following categories: History, The Planet, Being Human, Animal World, World of Plants, Science and Technology, and Space—complete with five fold-outs. See more at It’s Nice That.

5. Photographing the Planet Every Day From 143 Satellites

San Francisco-based start-up Planet just launched 88 small satellites in a record-breaking take-off from India (among a total of 103 satellites on a PSLV rocket). If all goes according to plan, Planet will begin photographing Earth every single day from their entire roster of 143 satellites, which move north to south scanning the globe. This would position Planet as the premiere provider of satellite image data. Their depth of information will also include historic date from US Landsat satellites and European Sentinel satellites, building an unparalleled glimpse at our the Earth’s developments.

6. 32,000 Drinking Straws Turned Camera

From the inventive imagination of Cliff Haynes and the late photographer Mick Farrell, this wondrous photographic device allows lights to pass through 32,000 10-inch black drinking straws, encased in wood, before striking photo sensitive paper. As Haynes explains to PetaPixel, the camera has its own unique signature on images—as none of the straws are exactly even. The resulting imagery feels reminiscent of dot art, but captures portraiture in a curious balance of realism and impressionism. You can view the photographers’ works over at PetaPixel.

7. Google Maps Launches “Lists” So You Can Share Your Favorite Spots

All Google Maps users (on iOS and Android) can now make lists of places to save for future reference and/or share with friends. At the time of launch, the Lists feature has three options: Favorites, Starred Places, and Want to Go. It’s a clever way to keep track of old favorites, possibly quash some “Where do we eat?” dilemmas, and share travel tips with pals. Just be sure not to make your sacred, secret spots public or they’ll be overrun in no time. Read more at TechCrunch.

8. Zaha Hadid’s Spectacular Leeza SOHO Tower, Shanghai

One of four projects underway by Zaha Hadid Architects and SOHO China, the Leeza SOHO Tower promises to be a striking addition to Shanghai’s skyline. Currently under construction, when complete the building will reach 207 meters high, and boast the world’s tallest atrium—some 190 meters tall. Not only will it stretch the 46 stories of the Leeza, the atrium has also been designed with a twist, ensuring heaps of natural light no matter the time of day or season. Read more at designboom.

Link About It is our filtered look at the web, shared daily in Link and on social media, and rounded up every Saturday morning.