Link About It: This Week’s Picks

Lesbian archives, water on Mars, essential art terms, saying goodbye to Jonathan Gold and more

1. Farewell to Jonathan Gold

More than a restaurant critic and Pulitzer Prize winner, Jonathan Gold was a champion of his native Los Angeles. Gold, who wrote with genuine fondness and excitement about his food adventures, passed away this weekend at 57 years old. With over a thousand reviews published throughout his career, he wrote about everything from “Korean porridge parlors, Lanzhou hand-pulled noodle vendors, Iranian tongue-sandwich shops, vegan hot dog griddles” to food trucks, fine dining and more—but insisted, “I’m not a cultural anthropologist. I write about taco stands and fancy French restaurants to try to get people less afraid of their neighbors and to live in their entire city instead of sticking to their one part of town.” Read more at the New York Times.

2. Scientists May Have Found Water on Mars

The search for liquid-state water on Mars, since the quest began, has been largely unsuccessful. Gaseous and solid states of it teased rovers and crews alike. Condensation would consume glass windows upon landing; ice deposits spread across the planet’s surface. But, just days ago the Italian Space Agency announced the possibility of a 12-mile-wide, several-feet-deep pool of water a mile under the surface of one of the planet’s southernmost polar caps. Read more at Wired.

3. The Architecture + Color Palette of North Korea

Pyongyang, North Korea “stretches out beneath you as a pastel-colored panorama,” Guardian architecture critic Oliver Wainwright observed from the 70th floor of the 500-foot-high Tower of the Juche Idea. This, and many other surprising discoveries are revealed in Wainwright’s new book, “Inside North Korea,” published by Taschen. In addition to his analytical text, the book includes photography taken by Wainwright. It all helps to build a greater understanding of a city that was built entirely after 1953. And, as 1st Dibs explains, where you can read more, the author tries to build a bridge “between form and the regime’s political preoccupations.” Read more at 1stdibs.

4. The Lesbian Archives of Glasgow Women’s Library

The Glasgow Women’s Library is the only accredited institution in the UK that’s dedicated to archiving women’s lives and communities—past and present. The intersectional feminist museum is also home to the Lesbian Archive—the largest collection of artifacts (from political pamphlets and badges to flyers, newsletters, clothes, dildos and more) that’s centered on women and non-binary people’s LGBTQ+ experiences. Adele Patrick tells Dazed, “These are incredibly important materials connected to lesbian lives, they have to be saved.” And while there are moments of separatism in some of the materials (some of which date back to the early 1900s), there’s plenty of intersectionality and inclusivity, too. From the political to the personal, all artifacts in the collection are significant—and they’re there to be shared. Read more at Dazed.

5. Eight Essential Art Terms

Art lexicon is often daunting and dense. The words usually have roots in French or German, but even the simple(r) English ones are worthy of brushing up on. Learning the right terms is essential when attempting to analyze art—a builder has to have the right tools, after all. From “foreshortening” to “gestural,” Artsy has listed eight essential terms.

6. “Connected” Glasses and Bottles Will Track Your Alcohol Consumption

Long lines at the bar, iffy brand loyalty, and out-of-touch leadership are among the woes of the liquor business—and issues that brands are looking to solve for their consumers. With “connected” cocktail glasses and liquor bottles, brands will be able to track consenting party’s habits, preferences, take their orders, and provide them with real-time discounts and recipes. The question is: it unnecessary intrusion or considerate innovation? Read more at Digiday.

7. How the Parker Space Probe Will Avoid Melting When It Reaches the Sun

As Popular Mechanics points out, there is a difference between temperature and heat—though they’re often seen as interchangeable on Earth. In the sun’s corona, its outer layer, temperatures hover in the millions of degrees in temperature, but “the loose organization of plasma in the corona makes the heat manageable.” NASA’s Parker Space Probe will enter the corona with a heat shield composed of a unique carbon composite foam sandwiched between two carbon plates. Inside the space probe, it will only feel like 85 degrees Fahrenheit—and thus avoid melting. Read more at Popular Mechanics.

8. How “Now That’s What I Call Music” Became a Juggernaut

Launching 28 November 1983 in the UK (and 27 October 1998 in the US), “Now That’s What I Call Music” has become a bastion of record sales in an ever-changing industry. In its origin nation, the compilation series has now reached its 100th edition. Not to mention more than 120 million records have been sold (and the albums have spent 654 weeks at number one). Globally, it’s also the biggest-selling hits collection catalog. Born to showcase top talent of the day—or really recycle old (number one) hits in collections—the numbers are baffling but its impact (and how track selections ring as endorsements today) is even more so. To explore the concept deeper, the BBC spoke with Ashley Abram (the compiler of “Now” volumes two-81) and Simon Draper (co-founder, Virgin Records) on its unlikely rise. Head there for more.

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