The Signal is the ABC's daily news podcast that helps cut through the noise to cover the biggest stories, explaining not only what is happening but why. It's an entertaining 15-minute show, perfect for the daily commute.
Friyay satellite doomsday scenarios
The satellite business is booming.
From state-sponsored spy tech, through to machines the size of a postage stamp, companies and nations are launching them all at an unprecedented rate.
In fact without them, the world as we know it would grind to a halt.
Today on The Signal, the wild west of the new space race, and what's at stake.
Dr Brad Tucker, Astrophysicist, ANU
Steve Winnall, VP Engineering, Myriota
Annabel Crabb reviews the 'women's budget'
The government desperately wanted to impress women with this federal budget, and shore up votes before the next election.
The Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced new spending on aged care, child care and disability support, not to mention $1 billion in support for women's safety.
So was it really a "women's budget"?
And if it was, what do women actually get?
Annabel Crabb, ABC political writer and author, 'The Wife Drought'
Your federal budget cheat sheet
The Federal Government has just handed down what is most likely its last budget before the next election.
It's a pretty odd one, because the budget is in much better shape than even the Government was expecting just a few months ago.
But instead of pocketing all the cash for budget repair, the Treasurer Josh Frydenberg is spreading it around on everything from aged care to micro-breweries.
Today on The Signal, has the Coalition had a fundamental economic conversion? Or is this budget all about the upcoming election?
Ian Verrender, ABC Business Editor
Do we need a 'people's vaccine'?
As rich countries return to normal, COVID-19 is still spreading in developing countries worldwide.
In places including India and Brazil, thousands are dying each day while vaccination programs stall.
So can the world manufacture doses faster?
Today on The Signal, there's a mounting case for the world to scrap patent protections for COVID-19 vaccines to allow more countries to manufacture their own.
It would involve temporarily waiving something called the TRIPS agreement, and the US and Australia are both now onboard.
So is it going to happen?
And will it solve the global vaccine crisis?
Professor Ronald Labonte, Canada Research Chair in Contemporary Globalisation and Health Equity, School of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Ottawa, Canada
Keeping mum about being transgender
There's a fight going on in New South Wales right now about whether transgender people can be acknowledged in schools.
The bill would ban the mention or teaching of what it terms "gender fluidity".
And if you zoom out, globally, the argument bears a very close resemblance to a swathe of bills being tabled and sometimes passed in states across America.
Today on the Signal, the new battles facing trans people here and the US laws inspiring them.
Ashleigh Raper, New South Wales State Political Reporter, ABC
Teddy Cook, Vice President, Australian Professional Association for Trans Health
Can the budget fix aged care?
Australia's aged care system is deeply broken.
Over two and a half years, a royal commission into its failures heard harrowing stories of abuse and neglect, both often linked to chronic understaffing.
Two months ago, after the royal commission handed down its final report, the federal government acknowledged there were "fundamental issues" that needed to be addressed.
So is it going to address them in next week's budget?
Today on The Signal, we hear what the royal commission said needed to change, and ask whether there's the political will to follow that through.
Jude, aged care worker
Anne Connolly, Reporter, ABC Investigations