June 2, 2017

Written by

Chris Gonzales


Seán Doran

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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Jupiter's south pole, seen from a distance of just over 50,000 km.Photo credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Betsy Asher Hall/Gervasio Robles (but rotated and landscape'd by yours truly)

Jupiter’s south pole, seen from a distance of just over 50,000 km.

Photo credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Betsy Asher Hall/Gervasio Robles (but rotated and landscape’d by yours truly)

A Whole New Jupiter »

NASA’s Juno spacecraft launched from Earth on August 5th, 2011 and entered Jupiter orbit last year on July 4th, 2016. It’s an unusual orbit too, as Phil Plait describes:

[Juno] is on a looping 53-day trajectory that takes it 8 million kilometers out from the planet, then drops it screaming in to just 4200 kilometers above the planet’s north pole, traveling at a terrifying 200,000 kilometers per hour (125,000 mph). It swings down the planet, over the south pole, and is flung out once again.

Just over a week ago, NASA began releasing early science results — using data from two of its six completed orbits thus far (out of an eventual twelve) — and jaw-dropping images of the Jovian planet. We’ve already learned some fascinating things:

  • As you approach the planet’s poles, Jupiter’s iconic belts and zones break down into huge numbers of densely clustered, Earth-sized cyclonic storms. The storms covering its north pole vary in size far more than those at the south pole, for reasons which we don’t yet know.
  • Jupiter’s magnetic field — which we already knew was the most intense in the solar system — is even stronger than previously modeled, and more weirdly “lumpy” than we’d imagined (i.e. it’s stronger in some places and weaker in others).
  • Juno discovered the existence of a broad plume of ammonia circling Jupiter’s equator, rising from at least as deep within the planet’s atmosphere as we’re able to detect with Juno’s Microwave Radiometer (approx. 342 mi / 550 km) and likely much deeper.

Using imagery taken from Juno’s most recent pass around Jupiter, Seán Doran stitched together a series of still photos (colorized by Gerald Eichstädt) into a video/animation approximating what it would be like to fly over the giant planet, with music from the Moonraker soundtrack added by Avi Solomon:

I’m sure I don’t need to say it, but…wow. This is all incredible stuff.

Pinboard Acquires Delicious »

You read that title correctly: Pinboard owner Maciej Cegłowski — after a long history of taunting his competitor — has officially acquired the Delicious bookmarking site:

As for the ultimate fate of the site, I’ll have more to say about that soon. Delicious has over a billion bookmarks and is a fascinating piece of web history. Even Yahoo, for whom mismanagement is usually effortless, had to work hard to keep Delicious down. I bought it in part so it wouldn’t disappear from the web.

My favorite part is at the end:

Do not attempt to compete with Pinboard.

There’s also this:

I just spoke to Pinboard CEO Maciej Ceglowski, who said “I am the greatest,” and confirmed Pinboard bought Delicious for $35K.

Such a beautiful and perfect ending to this saga. 📌

(Or is it…only the beginning…?)


All Thumbs: Why Reach Navigation Should Replace the Navbar in iOS Design »

Interaction designer Brad Ellis of Tall West wrote a piece on why iOS designers need to ditch the top-hand navbar in their apps:

Burgeoning screens mean the distance between the navbar and our thumbs has grown. The screen on a 7 Plus is so tall it would take a thumb-length increase of 150 percent to reach those pesky buttons with one hand. Just another knuckle or two. Nothing weird.


The navbar has been essential part of iOS since Apple released the first developer kit, and it has served us well. But it’s time to let go.

Let’s agree to stop sticking important buttons to the top of the screen. Better navigation is within reach.

The quick Safari mockup near the end is neat.

+ Side note: I’ve long organized my iPhone home screen based on reachability, with my most-used apps at the bottom. When I’m actually in an app, I hate stretching my thumb to reach a back navigation arrow when swiping from the left edge doesn’t work (looking at you, Starbucks). I’m all for the ideas in Brad’s article.

10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation »

Journalist and radio host Celeste Headlee knows a thing or two about having great discussions with people. In fact, her career hinges on it.

In her viral TED talk from April 2015, she shared 10 useful tips for having better conversations:

  1. Don’t multitask. Be present in the moment.
  2. Don’t pontificate. Enter every conversation assuming you have something to learn.
  3. Use open-ended questions. “How did that make you feel?” vs. “Did that terrify you?”
  4. Go with the flow. Let thoughts go as they come into your mind.
  5. If you don’t know, say that you don’t know.
  6. Don’t equate your experience with theirs. All experiences are individual, and it’s not always about you.
  7. Try not to repeat yourself.
  8. Stay out of the weeds. Nobody cares about all those specific details you struggle to come up with. They care about you.
  9. Listen. “If you can’t do that, you’re not in a conversation; you’re just two people shouting out barely related sentences in the same place.”
  10. Be brief.

(via Jason Kottke)

+ A year after giving that talk, Celeste spoke with TED’s Janet Lee about how a great conversation is like a game of catch:

There’s a great study out of Harvard in which researchers discovered that talking about yourself actually activates the same pleasure centers in your brain as sex and cocaine. That means it’s very pleasurable to us to talk about ourselves and what we like. You could walk away from a conversation like that and feel fantastic about it. But remember — talking about yourself makes you feel fantastic. So you may have just walked away from a conversation in which you talked about yourself — that was awesome! — and the other person is walking away going, “Good god, that person would not stop talking about themselves.” It’s a totally different perception, so you’ve got to remember you’re playing catch — find the balance.

The Unexpected Pleasures of More Than a Decade of Reading Harry Potter »

Leo Babauta of Zen Habits wrote a personal post about the experiences and unexpected pleasures of reading through the entire Harry Potter series with four (out of six) of his kids:

That’s what Harry Potter was for me, with all the kids: a magical thread woven into the last 15+ years of my life, weaving me and each child together in unexpected, joyful ways. There have been lots of other experiences weaving us together — being part of a large family, traveling together, riding bikes and playing in the park, playing boardgames and werewolf, cooking together and spending time with other loved ones. Harry Potter was like all of that, except with wands.

I can’t wait to read through them with my own son. He’s turning six this year, so it probably won’t be too long before we can start. (The only reason I hesitate a bit longer is because the later books get dark.)

How to Shoot Inception-Style Drone Photos »

Drone pilot and Eye Above UAV Services owner Matthew Maas wrote a nice guide to shooting Inception-style photos with a drone:

I am here to let you in on the secret and show you that it isn’t as hard as it may seem. If you have a drone and photoshop you are already most of the way there! You don’t need any special 3D software or fancy plugins, all you need in the basic warp tool in photoshop.

Cabel Sasser’s #new Snack Food Tweets »

If you follow Panic co-founder Cabel Sasser on Twitter, you’ll know he often likes to post about weird/horrible snack foods under the “#new” hashtag. I recently mentioned to him that I wished there were a way to retroactively chain those tweets together into a kind of snack food horror museum, to which he replied:

A quick “from:cabel #new” search works pretty well!!!

And there it was, in all its eldritch glory. Be wary of clicking, traveler, or you may find yourself in a well of despair from which you can never escape.

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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.