Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House,

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House,

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Doodle books
We’ve confessed our love of doodling in a previous link roundup, so we were of course excited to run into these two items: An exhibition at the Cambridge University Library featuring books with inscriptions, scribbles, and doodles, and doodles in some of the world’s oldest books as cataloged by medieval book historian Erik Kwakkel.

Speed limits in museums
The average museum visitor spends only 15 to 30 seconds in front of a work of art. What happens if you slow down and look at an artwork for 20 minutes?

DIY archaeology
This one made us snort laugh. An amateur finds what he presumes to be a fragment of a stone relief from an ancient Roman fort and comes up with a creative recreation of the full work.

The hunt for the best-known diner in art history
Is this Greenwich Village diner the inspiration for Edward Hopper’s iconic “Nighthawks” painting?

Is a cluttered desk really a sign of genius?
Brady Robinson photographs the work spaces of art professionals, resulting in “an even more revealing portrait of a person than an image of her face.”

Machu Picchu wobbles but it won’t fall down
Incas built Machu Picchu with an ingenious technique to prevent collapses due to Peru’s frequent earthquakes. Now California-based architects are using those lessons to create similar designs with 3-D printers.

Look closely
In preparation for Halloween: a disconcerting detail in a beautiful baroque church in Munich.