Written by

Chris Gonzales


Annie Spratt

Welcome to this week’s edition of our Friday Quality Linkage column. Please enjoy this week’s collection of interesting and entertaining links. Brew a fresh cup of coffee, find a comfortable place, and relax.

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Photo: Camilo Diaz, Winner, Colombia National Award, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards

Photo: Camilo Diaz, Winner, Colombia National Award, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards

Photo: Hendrik Mändla Estonia, 3rd Place, National Awards, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards

Photo: Hendrik Mändla Estonia, 3rd Place, National Awards, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards

Winners of the 2017 Sony World Photography Awards »

Alan Taylor of The Atlantic collected the winners and runner-ups from this year’s Sony World Photography Awards, with individual captions as told by the photographers themselves. It goes without saying that this is an incredible collection of imagery.

Ten-Meter Tower »

Documentary filmmakers Maximilien Van Aertryck and Axel Danielson asked 67 deathly frightened people to jump off a 10-meter diving tower for the first time, and made this fascinating short film showing which ones chose to dive and which ones backed down:

Our objective in making this film was something of a psychology experiment: We sought to capture people facing a difficult situation, to make a portrait of humans in doubt. We’ve all seen actors playing doubt in fiction films, but we have few true images of the feeling in documentaries. To make them, we decided to put people in a situation powerful enough not to need any classic narrative framework. A high dive seemed like the perfect scenario.

Image: Emojipedia

Image: Emojipedia

The Finalized List of 69 New Emoji for 2017 »

Jeremy Burge, writing for Emojipedia:

After months of work aligning Unicode 10.0 code points with new features in Emoji 5.0, the 2017 emoji list is now final.

These include smileys, people, food, drink, flags, and for the first time: new fantasy characters such as a mermaid, genie, and vampire.

We are today releasing the final version of our sample images for this update. These have been designed in the “Apple style” to picture how these emojis may look when hitting phones later in the year.

Emojipedia put together a 4-minute video highlighting every new emoji on the list:

Lines in the Sand: When the Beach Becomes a Canvas »

California-based sand artist Jim Denevan was recently profiled by Great Big Story about his elaborate (and impermanent) geometric artworks on beaches around the world:

Anyone can write their name in the sand, but Jim Denevan uses the beach to create stunning large-scale art. What started as a hobby over 20 years ago has resulted in worldwide recognition, and he’s created masterworks from Russia to Chile to Australia. At the end of the day, though, Jim’s just happy to find a new beach to make his canvas.

Jim is also known as the founder of Outstanding in the Field, which seems like an interesting project if you’re super into the whole “farm-to-table” dining thing.

Illustration by Jenny Mörtsell

Illustration by Jenny Mörtsell

Anthony Bourdain Does Not Want to Owe Anybody Even a Single Dollar »

A couple weeks ago you may have heard about this article when it was making the internet rounds. In case you haven’t, it’s a refreshingly honest piece about finances written by Anthony Bourdain as part of the “Money Diaries” series on Wealthsimple’s blog:

The reports of my net worth are about ten times overstated. I think the people who calculate these things assume that I live a lot more sensibly than I do. I mean, I don’t live recklessly — I have one car. But I don’t deprive myself simple pleasures. I’m not a haggler. There’s not enough time in the world. I tend to go for the quickest, easiest, what’s comfortable. I want it now. Time’s running out.

Spinach Leaf Transformed Into Beating Human Heart Tissue »

Delaney Chambers of National Geographic writes about a recently published study where scientists actually found a way to use spinach to build beating human heart tissue:

One of the defining traits of a leaf is the branching network of thin veins that delivers water and nutrients to its cells. Now, scientists have used plant veins to replicate the way blood moves through human tissue. The work involves modifying a spinach leaf in the lab to remove its plant cells, which leaves behind a frame made of cellulose.


The team then bathed the remaining plant frame in live human cells, so that the human tissue grew on the spinach scaffolding and surrounded the tiny veins. Once they had transformed the spinach leaf into a sort of mini heart, the team sent fluids and microbeads through its veins to show that blood cells can flow through this system.

Absolutely incredible. I can’t wait to see how this research pans out in the real world someday.

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Got any suggestions for articles, videos, stories, photographs, and any other links you think we should be posting in our weekly Quality Linkage? Please do let us know on Twitter.