ITI Daily News Roundup

03/06/2014

Key Issues

Tax and the Economy

Lew defends the budget Round Two. After taking relatively respectful questions from the Democratic-controlled Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is headed to less friendly territory on Thursday — the House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Committee. (Politico Pro)

Obama's Budget Seeks Overhaul of Business-Tax Codes. President Barack Obama proposed his biggest tax increases yet on multinational corporations' overseas earnings. ITI’s Miguel Martinez is quoted. (Wall Street Journal) 

Workforce 

Robot ed: Apple, Google vets nab $8M to teach kids to code with robots. Don't bet on the trend toward toys that teach kids to code waning anytime soon. (Silicon Valley Business Journal)

Women in tech: why female representation matters. Technology companies build products that help us make sense of the world. How can they do this without input from 52% of the world's population? (The Guardian)

IP Enforcement

Lawmakers: Patent reform will advance. Two lawmakers immersed in patent reform efforts suggested Wednesday that the president could see a bill on his desk in coming months. (Politico Pro)

Global Policy

For Some Online Deals in India, Warranties Won’t Work. As online retailing blossoms into a multi-billion dollar business in India, some of the best deals on cell phones and computers may come with a hidden cost: their warranties may not be valid here. (Wall Street Journal)

Draft EU Services Proposal Appears To Take On 'Jones Act' Restriction. A leaked draft European Commission proposal on services obligations for the U.S.-EU free trade talks contains language that appears aimed at dismantling a U.S. restriction enshrined in the "Jones Act" that permits only U.S.-flagged ships to transport goods between two domestic U.S. ports. (World Trade Online)

At Lew Hearing, Wyden Spotlights Currency, Pressuring Russia With Trade Actions. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) on March 5 announced that he wants to work with the Treasury Department to address misaligned currencies, and also pressed Treasury Secretary Jack Lew to evaluate options for putting economic pressure on Russia to respond to its military incursion into Ukraine's Crimea region. (World Trade Online)

Privacy

Ex-NSA Official Inglis Warns Tech Firms: Be Transparent. Companies That Amass Vast Amounts of Personal Data Should Learn From Agency's Mistakes, He Says (Wall Street Journal)

White House Seeks Input For Deep Dive On Big Data. The White House says it will take public comments on its review of big data, which was one of the Obama Administration's responses to concerns about NSA data collection. (Broadcasting & Cable)

Cybersecurity

Feds seek info-sharing standards for private-sector data breaches.  Federal law enforcement officials are stepping up their calls for reporting standards that require businesses to notify customers and law enforcement when hackers steal or compromise personal information. (Federal Computer Week)

Continuous monitoring is improving cybersecurity, but not without challenges. Continuous monitoring sounds like a simple solution to combat cyber-intruders. (Federal Computer Week) 

Target's top chief information officer resigns in wake of massive data breach. Target’s chief information officer Beth Jacob resigned Wednesday as the retailer struggles in the wake of a massive pre-Christmas data breach. (The Guardian)

Environment and Sustainability

House passes bill on energy efficiency. The House passed a bipartisan package on Wednesday intended to up energy efficiency in homes and federal agencies. (The Hill) 

'Carbon bubble' threatens stock markets, say MPs. The world's financial markets could be creating a "carbon bubble" by over valuing the fossil fuel assets of large companies say MPs. (BBC)

Solar Market has Record Year. The US solar industry shattered records in 2013, adding 4,751 MW. (Environmental Leader)

Why open source automation is the secret to smarter buildings. Building owners can improve the energy efficiency of more buildings faster, while making more money, with open infrastructure for automation. (Green Business News Blog)

Europe targets conflict minerals. European officials unveiled a proposal Wednesday aimed at ensuring that the metals in consumer electronics made on the continent don’t come from war-torn regions of Africa and elsewhere, but the incentive-based measure falls short of the conflict-free minerals mandate that human rights groups have sought. (Politico Pro)

Public Sector

New EHR standards proposed. The HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has issued proposals for the next edition of electronic health record technology certification criteria. (Federal Times)

Defense Health Agency Wants More Money for IT Operations in 2015. The Defense Health Agency requested a budget of $1.6 billion to support operations and maintenance of health information management systems in 2015, 7 percent more than its $1.5 billion 2014 operations budget. (Nextgov) 

Innovation

Rolls-Royce imagines a future of unmanned ships. Unmanned cargo ships could become a reality on our oceans within the decade, according to manufacturer Rolls-Royce. (BBC)

New breakthrough: Engineered immune cells may block HIV. A new advance in HIV treatment could pave the way toward curing the disease, researchers say. (CNET)

Automakers Eye Laser Lights To Let Drivers See Farther At Night. If you thought LED headlights were bright enough, automakers are looking ahead to even more powerful beams using lasers. (NPR) 

Technology companies eye health market. The trend reflects growing interest in the potential for a convergence of technology, big data and life sciences to open new ways of monitoring health and tackling disease. (Financial Times)

Mobility

Verizon Wireless Plans to Triple AWS Deployment This Year to Ease Congestion. Verizon Wireless on Wednesday said that it will continue to strategically add a second band of spectrum, known as AWS, as it looks to keep up with demand on its LTE network. (Recode)

Dish utterly dominates the PCS spectrum auction, winning all 176 licenses. In what came as a little surprise, Dish Network has walked away with every one of the 176 spectrum licenses the Federal Communications Commission auctioned off in the PCS band last month, according to FCC documentation. (GigaOM)

The Internet is both a blessing and a curse for Uganda’s LGBTI activists. The Internet can be a mixed blessing for marginalized communities -- helping them organize and reach larger audiences, but also allowing their attackers to identify them. (Washington Post)

It shouldn’t take a merger for low-income Americans to get cheap broadband. Comcast is extending its $10-a-month broadband program for low-income Americans. The discounted service, known as Internet Essentials, was set to expire three years after Comcast's merger with NBC-Universal in 2011. But now the cable company says it's making the program available to eligible people "indefinitely." (Washington Post)

Tech Business

Exclusive: DirecTV in talks with Disney on deal for Internet rights. DirecTV is in talks with Walt Disney Co to license the rights to offer Disney's broadcast and cable channels as part of an Internet-based product, DirecTV said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Huawei To Upgrade Vodafone Networks. Chinese telecommunications equipment supplier Huawei Technologies said it has signed a five-year contract with Vodafone Group to help upgrade the U.K.-based carrier’s networks in 15 countries in Europe and Africa. Huawei didn’t disclose the value of the deal. (Wall Street Journal)

The coming battery boom will need better software, sensors & data. Before we get drowned in cheap batteries, we’ll need better software to monitor and manage them, both optimizing their batteries use and keeping them safe. (GigaOM)

ITI Member News

Facebook tightens rules on gun posts. The world's biggest social networking site Facebook has tightened its rules on posts relating to guns. (BBC)

SAP's new cloud strategy includes app marketplace, new pricing scheme. Shifting the focus away from the enterprise, SAP execs boasted that more than 1,000 startups across 57 countries are now building products on HANA, with 60 of them already live. (ZDNet)

1600 Penn.

This morning, President Obama will participate in a town hall focusing on the importance of Latinos capitalizing on the benefits of the Affordable Care Act. The town hall will be streamed live at WhiteHouse.gov/LatinoTownHall.  

This evening, President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will host “In Performance at the White House: Women of Soul” at the White House celebrating the great “foremothers” of American music. The event will be streamed live at WhiteHouse.gov/live.

Today on the Hill

HOUSE: The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. First votes expected: 10:00 - 11:15 a.m. Last votes expected: 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.

COMMITTEE ACTIVITY OF THE DAY: Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce hearing on “ObamaCare and the Self-Employed: What About Us?” (Thursday, March 6th, at 10:00 a.m.)

SENATE: The Senate will convene at 9:30 a.m and begin a period of morning business. At 10:30 a.m., the Senate will proceed to executive session to resume the consideration of the nomination of Rose Eilene Gottemoeller to be the Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security.

Subscribe by E-mail
ITI Daily News Roundup

By providing your email address below you agree to receive ITI's Daily News Roundup, a free daily email with the day's most relevant stories on tech policy and tech industry.