Whether you are celebrating Christmas or not, this is a week to celebrate: The James Webb Space Telescope is slated to launch on Friday – and usher in a new era in space exploration. Instead of wrapping gifts faster than you can say “scissors”, I watch the observatory on board the Ariane 5 take off into space. And so can you.
I’m Claire Cameron, editor at Inverse. Say hello to the new week and keep scrolling to find out all about how Google is trying to make your phone better and listen more to you. Inverse.
This is an adapted version of the Inverse daily Newsletter for Monday, December 20th, 2021. Subscribe for free and earn rewards for reading your inbox every day. ️
The James Webb Space Telescope is scheduled to launch on December 24th. The telescope will transform space science as we know it – it will study how galaxies, stars and planets are formed.
The telescope will collect infrared images of some of the oldest stars and galaxies in the cosmos, some of which were formed 13.6 billion years ago (or about 200 million years after the Big Bang). It will also watch newborn stars merge in nearby clouds of gas and dust.
At the same time, the telescope can discover potentially habitable planets around other stars in our galaxy. The telescope is powerful enough to see exactly what gases are in the atmosphere of exoplanets as they orbits past their host stars. Because it can image objects in the infrared, the telescope may be particularly capable of discovering new details about distant giant gas planets – similar to Jupiter – orbiting other stars.
So you can see it live.
Go deeper: Delayed start of the James Webb telescope and more: Understanding the world through 8 images
Google researchers are developing a new speech recognition app to recognize atypical speech patterns. Will it work?
That sounds dystopian – Google is trying to make your phone better at listening to you as you speak – but for people who have either poor or no verbal communication skills, being misunderstood or just ignored can be a daily experience, both facing each other on their quality of life as well as on their ability to move around the world. At the same time, even the almost ubiquitous voice-activated technologies that we have welcomed into our lives – smartphones, Google Homes, Alexas and so on – do not tend to sense their drift.
In fact, Google’s speech recognition software is so terrible that the company is trying to fundamentally change the way computers hear people with different verbal abilities – “Project Relate”.
This is how it works.
Read this next: Cell phone data shows why people suck when navigating cities
This is the perfect electric vehicle for one important reason: incredibly fast charging. It offers top-up speeds from 10 to 80 percent in 18 minutes. Last week, Inverse Contributor Jordan Golson got the chance to test the new Hyundai Ioniq 5, and it’s his new-generation electric car favorite.
It is the first to run on Hyundai’s specially designed E-GMP platform. This platform is designed to maximize interior space and enable designs that are not possible with a traditional internal combustion engine.
Like so many electric cars, the Ioniq 5 is fun to drive, and the packaging and design are exquisite. But the fast charging experience will be life changing for EV owners. We tested a few Electrify America charging stations and the Ioniq 5 quickly charged well above the maximum charging speed of Ford and Volkswagen electric vehicles.
Read the full review.
Read this next: Hyundai Ioniq 7: SEVEN concept shows futuristic design and a clever feature
Famed TikTok doctor Jake Goodman posted about being a resident in psychiatry taking medication for his mental health. Then came the backlash.
“When you’re the person who’s supposed to save people, it can be really hard to admit that you’re having trouble,” says Goodman Inverse.
The pandemic has only exacerbated the mental health problems of health workers – but due to professional and cultural reasons, few admit they need or seek help. According to Goodman, there are two big factors that keep these rates so high: the fear of losing medical approval for admitting mental health problems, and the concern that this will result in patients’ respect and confidence in their ability to care for them to take care of would cost.
Here’s what’s at stake.
Go deeper: 10 minutes of this easily accessible exercise can lead to a better brain
Quick question! help Inverse readers are expanding their alternative vacation listening and sending us their best vacation song that nobody but you will appreciate. The most obscure ones will be featured in a newsletter over the next week. Send yours to [email protected]
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- Today in History: Elvis receives the draft (source).
- Song of the day: “Merry Christmas” from Lightnin ‘Hopkins. Thank you, I WOULD Reader Earl!