ITI Tech News Roundup

03/31/2015

Key Issues

Tech Business

Meet The Censorship Activists Who Are Scaring China’s Government. “I hope we put ourselves out of business,” said Charlie Smith, the pseudonymous head of Great Fire. And he was serious. After all this Chinese Internet monitoring watchdog GreatFire.org is no ordinary case. (TechCrunch) 

Tech bigwigs help launch economic policy group. Silicon Valley bigwigs Sean Parker and Ron Conway are throwing their weight behind a new organization in Washington that will craft centrist proposals to stimulate the economy and press Congress to enact them, according to plans provided to POLITICO. (Politico) 

Twitter joins chorus to oppose state 'discrimination' laws. Twitter is adding its support to the growing chorus of opposition to “religious freedom” laws in Indiana and other states. (The Hill)

Venture Money Floods Into Indian Startups. Vikram Chopra spent the past three years building an online furniture-shopping site for Indian consumers that was funded mainly by annual capital injections from a German technology incubator. (WSJ) 

With Jay Z at the helm, Tidal targets Spotify, Apple. Jay Z's Tidal relaunch event answered a few questions, but raised many more. (USA Today) 

Global Trade

China suspends bank tech restrictions: U.S. Treasury official. China has agreed to delay implementing new bank technology restrictions that Washington has complained represent unfair regulatory pressure on foreign firms, a senior U.S. Treasury official said in Beijing on Monday. (Reuters)

Broadband

Bringing Internet To The Far Corners Of The Earth. About 2 billion people on earth have a smartphone with a decent Internet connection, but 5 billion are largely or entirely offline, according to global figures by the ITU. (NPR) 

Google Pressures AT&T’s Broadband Prices. AT&T Inc. brought its high-speed broadband service to Google Inc.’s backyard Monday, but at a higher price than in places where it competes with the Internet company. (WSJ)

Though Most Americans Are Wired, Seniors Lack Internet Access In U.S. While the U.S. is pretty well connected, there are still 20 million people who aren't online. Lee Rainie of Pew Research describes who they are and why that matters. (NPR)

Tax

Britain Uses Tax Breaks to Lure Digital-Game Developers. The British government is hoping to score big by offering millions of dollars of tax breaks to lure digital-game developers. (WSJ)

Cybersecurity

IARPA eyes insider-threat tech. The intelligence community's research arm wants to meet with researchers and companies to talk about advances in technologies that continuously monitor insider threats. (FCW) 

If it's April, it must be time for cybersecurity bills on Capitol Hill. The House Homeland Security Committee will mark up a cybersecurity information-sharing bill on April 14, setting the stage for three cybersecurity bills to hit the House floor the following week. (Inside Cybersecurity) 

Workforce

After Snowden, The NSA Faces Recruitment Challenge. Daniel Swann is exactly the type of person the National Security Agency (NSA) would love to have working for it. A fourth-year concurrent bachelors-masters student at Johns Hopkins University, the 22-year-old has a bright future in cybersecurity. (NPR)

Free coding class attracts students and some puzzled parents. Second-grader Kennedy Solaru can speak four languages – English, Mandarin, her father’s native Yoruba and coding. (StateScoop)

Sexism in Silicon Valley and beyond: tech wake-up call. "What happens if you get pregnant?" That was the first question an investor asked Martha Lane-Fox after she and her business partner pitched him their idea for a dot-com company in a plush office in central London in the late 1990s. (BBC) 

Why women won't code is topic of new documentary. Like many parents, Robin Hauser Reynolds was spurred to action by her children. (USA Today)

Environment and Sustainability

4 inspirations for sustainable transport from Rio de Janeiro. Known for its beautiful natural landscapes, Christ the Redeemer statue and Copacabana beach, Rio de Janeiro is an iconic city. Citizens’ ability to access these and local opportunities, though, has been limited due to increased reliance on individual cars that create traffic congestion. (GreenBiz)

A new utility business model profitably embraces efficiency and solar. A few weeks ago, the city council in Fort Collins, Colo., unanimously voted to accelerate the city’s climate action goals to achieve an 80 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2050. (GreenBiz) 

With 'Single-Stream' Recycling, Convenience Comes At A Cost. In many municipalities around the country, the days of sorting your recyclables for curbside pickup are long gone, replaced by a system called "single-stream" recycling. But what happens after all those bits of plastic, paper, glass and metal trash get put in the bin? (NPR) 

Public Sector

DHS wants better wearables for nation's first responders. Homeland Security now has an accelerator aimed at the concept of using wearable technology to make first responders' jobs easier. (FedScoop)

Innovation

Bionic ants could be tomorrow's factory workers. Robotic ants the size of a human hand that work together could be the future of factory production systems. (Reuters)

Multi-City Innovation Campaign Improves Upon Traditional Hackathon. Twenty-five localities and one accelerator have launched a $220,000 campaign to seed civic health apps for residents, with the ultimate goal of taking good ideas and giving them a platform to scale up and be sustainable as a solution. (GovTech)

Mobility

Huawei boosts R&D spending as 4G revolution marches on. Huawei, the privately held Chinese telecoms group, boosted its research and development spending by almost one-third in 2014 as China’s 4G revolution marched on. (FT)

T-Mobile Emerges a Wireless Auction Winner. Maybe T-Mobile USA Inc. was a big winner in the recently completed government wireless auction after all—with AT&T Inc. picking up the bill. (WSJ)

ITI Member News

Awkward Timing for Sen. Mike Lee’s Google-Backed Fundraiser. On Monday, Sen. Mike Lee (R., Utah) announced he is looking into meetings involving Google Inc.GOOGL +0.64% and the White House around the time federal antitrust regulators closed a high-profile probe into the company two years ago. (WSJ)

IBM’s making a new business unit just for the Internet of Things. Weather forecasters get a bad rap for getting things wrong, but what if your insurance company had a forecast so accurate that it could send you an alert to move your car before a hailstorm destroyed your windshield? (Washington Post)

Microsoft to deliver Rio 2016 websites. The Rio 2016 Olympic Committee has hired Microsoft to create and maintain the three main websites for next year's Games. (ZDNet)

Sales from Apple and Google App Stores Seen Doubling by 2018, In-App Advertising to Triple. App revenue from the Google Play marketplace and Apple App Store is seen doubling by 2018, with in-app advertising expected to more than triple over the same time period. (Re/code)

Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics call off washer spat. South Korean rivals Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and LG Electronics Inc said on Tuesday they have agreed to call off all their legal disputes including a bitter months-long conflict over a set of damaged washing machines. (Reuters) 

US trade body to investigate Apple after Ericsson complaints. The U.S. International Trade Commission has decided to investigate Apple after two complaints from Ericsson that the iPhone maker violated its patents. (PC World)

1600 Penn.

In the morning, President Obama and Vice President Biden will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. In the afternoon, the president will meet with Secretary of Defense Carter in the Oval Office.

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