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Apple shows ambition to get into self-driving car race
Sat, 03 Dec 2016 15:53:40 -0500

An Apple logo hangs above the entrance to the Apple store on 5th Avenue in the Manhattan borough of New York CityBy David Shepardson WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Apple Inc is wading in to the debate over regulation of self-driving cars, declaring it is excited about the potential for automated transportation and calling on U.S. regulators not to restrict testing of such vehicles. A five-page letter from Steve Kenner, Apple's director of product integrity, to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is the company's most comprehensive statement yet about its interest in self-driving vehicle technology. "Executed properly under NHTSA's guidance, automated vehicles have the potential to greatly enhance the human experience — to prevent millions of car crashes and thousands of fatalities each year and to give mobility to those without." Apple urged regulators not to impose too many restrictions on testing of self-driving cars, saying "established manufacturers and new entrants should be treated equally." Since software would decide what actions to take in potentially dangerous situations, Apple said certain areas need special attention.


Airbnb, New York City settle rental law lawsuit
Fri, 02 Dec 2016 22:29:20 -0500

A 3D printed people's models are seen in front of a displayed Airbnb logo in this illustrationBy Nate Raymond NEW YORK (Reuters) - Airbnb Inc and New York City said on Friday they had resolved a lawsuit brought by the company challenging a law it argued could expose it to significant penalties for advertising short-term apartment rentals. Airbnb had contended that the law's ambiguous wording could allow New York authorities to apply it to online platforms like itself that host third-party listings, creating the risk of significant civil penalties and criminal liability. Under the terms of the settlement, New York City agreed that the law would not be enforced against the company and was instead aimed at individual violators, a spokeswoman for Mayor Bill de Blasio said.


U.S. presidential commission issues recommendations on cyber security
Fri, 02 Dec 2016 18:08:15 -0500

Man poses in front of on a display showing the word 'cyber' in binary code, in this picture illustration taken in ZenicaThe U.S. government and the private sector must cooperate to improve the security of digital networks, a U.S. presidential commission on cyber security recommended in a wide-ranging report issued on Friday. The commission created by President Barack Obama earlier this year also recommended that the president and Congress accelerate the pace at which technology is updated in the federal sector and that the president appoint an ambassador for cyber security for efforts abroad. Obama said in a statement after meeting the commission's head, his former national security adviser Tom Donilon, on Friday that his administration strongly supported the commission's "thoughtful and pragmatic" recommendations.


Obama bars China's Fujian from buying Aixtron's U.S. business
Fri, 02 Dec 2016 18:32:14 -0500

The headquarters of German chip equipment maker Aixtron SE is pictured in HerzogenrathBy Matthias Inverardi and Diane Bartz FRANKFURT/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama blocked a Chinese investment fund from acquiring the U.S. business of German semiconductor equipment maker Aixtron because the deal posed a risk to American national security, the Treasury Department said on Friday. Obama's executive order barring China's Fujian Grand Chip Investment Fund (FGC) from completing the acquisition of a German company with American assets was one of few such instances in which a U.S. president has blocked a transaction due to national security concerns.


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