Inverse Daily

The Mandalorian has found a way to adapt

The Disney+ series cements a winning formula; the search for life in outer space; new anxiety breakthroughs, and more: It's Inverse Daily.

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Good morning! Nick Lucchesi here, executive editor at Inverse. Two things: This Dave Chappelle monologue is an excellent watch on a Monday morning if you concern yourself with making your future — yourself, your community, your world — a more positive, realistic place to live and breathe, which is what Inverse is all about. It's also Dave Chappelle, so it's NSFW. Put on your headphones.

And two, on Sunday night, Virgin Hyperloop made history as two people traveled inside a pod in a vacuum tube. It only hit 100 mph, but it's a start. Our UK-based staff writer Mike Brown burned his midnight oil to cover it. Hyperloop technology has sort of been thought of as vapor-ware in recent years, but this feels like a real, significant step. You have to read Mike's story. Now, back to David with our question of the week.

Question of the week — Our review of the new Spider-Man game is out (see what Inverse thought below) and that got us to thinking: What superhero do you think deserves a video game who hasn't had one recently? Or one who deserves a bigger role? We'd love to get your take on which supes deserve a bigger role on the digital screen.

And with that, let's get on to the Daily.

This is an adapted version of the Inverse Daily newsletter for November 9, 2020. Subscribe for free and earn rewards for reading every day in your inbox.

Today on The AbstractThe secrets of neanderthal children

While at-home tests can now reveal how much of your DNA is Neanderthal, scientists still don't understand exactly what it means for modern humans to have this genetic code in the first place. However, the latest research on Neanderthal babies is helping to change that.

Meanwhile, the discovery of the oldest-known sperm cells to date — no bigger than a poppy seed — has scientists rethinking reproduction all together.

In this episode of The Abstract, we discuss how fossil models and the oldest-known sperm sample are rewriting evolutionary history.

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Starsucker — Stars may zap the life off their planets

The first exoplanet was discovered more than 20 years ago, and scientists are on the hunt for more of these strange worlds. For many, the quest is driven by one thing: The search for signs of life.

But when looking at whether an exoplanet has the key ingredients for habitability, scientists tend to ignore one crucial factor — the activity of the planet's host star.

A new study suggests they need to start taking it seriously, however. In the paper, the astronomers describe how emissions coming from the host stars can cause a planet to lose its atmosphere. And with no atmosphere, so the theory goes, there can be no life.

Stars may zap the life off their planets — study

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'The Mandalorian' is refreshingly old-school.

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Baby Yoda — Mandalorian Season 2 finally tells a new story using this classic trope

The Mandalorian is breaking new ground by being normal. While other streaming shows are slowly morphing into 10-hour movies only broken up with credits, the Disney+ series delivers a fully-formed adventure every week. It's a reminder that episodic shows are for more than Quantum Leap and X-Files; they can work in the present day, too.

Usually, this means episodes would get formulaic (how many different Western-style story types are there really?), but Mandalorian has found a way to adapt genres for the Star Wars universe and subvert them. Chapter 10, "The Passenger," is no different.

'Mandalorian' Season 2 finally tells a new story using this classic trope →

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The human touch — How this design firm relied on human connection to succeed in a remote world

Design is an inherently collaborative process. Like many fields, it benefits from a team sitting around the table as well as small interactions in hallways and at the water cooler. For Rob Girling, co-founder and CEO of design firm Artefact, recreating inspiration in a remote environment has become his latest challenge.

“To succeed in a remote working context, it’s essential to create intentional, structured points of collaboration and connection,” the former Microsoft designer said. “Decisions and activities that were previously more free form and real time must now be planned ahead.”

Here’s how Artefact — founded in 2006 and whose clients have included Nike, Google, and Amazon — has adapted to remote work.

This design firm relied on human connection to succeed in a remote world

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Next week on Inverse make sure to look for a story of technology that is trying to make science fiction become reality. Tiny holograms are perhaps most recognizable from "You must help me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you are my only hope" in A New Hope. But some see the potential for a revolution in home and mobile technology. Check back on Inverse next week for more.

Jacked up — Stressed out? Study pinpoints a form of exercise that relieves anxiety

New research reveals resistance exercise training can have a life-changing effect on the mind, able to relieve anxiety in young adults. After a whirlwind year that's put mental health through the wringer, these findings give people actionable steps to strengthen muscles — and help their brain, too.‌‌

Stressed out? Study pinpoints a form of exercise that relieves anxiety

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Webbed gem — Spider-Man: Miles Morales review: The greatest Marvel superhero game ever

Miles Morales was underwhelming in 2018’s Spider-Man on PlayStation 4.

He felt a little too juvenile and far too dorky, and it was never totally clear how he fit within this world. While some of that remains in the early chapters of Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, this spectacular tale is even better than the original.

Miles has become an icon after Into the Spider-Verse, and his first solo video game adventure makes the original feel basic by comparison. Maybe it has something to do with how many different versions of Peter Parker we’ve seen in the last two decades, but there’s far more exciting new territory to cover with Miles.

He is at once both Spider-Man and a unique hero in his own right. So even when his story plays out in a way that greatly resembles the first game, it’s still surprising and refreshing. Being set in early winter as opposed to autumn helps make it feel refreshingly different.

Spider-Man: Miles Morales review: The greatest Marvel superhero game ever

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If you need a little more, make sure to check out the sci-fi apocalypse movie leaving streaming soon that you can't miss.

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