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Tech News Roundup - 08/24/2017

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Global Trade

Britain seeks close EU relationship on data protection after Brexit. Britain will set out a plan to co-operate closely with Europe on data protection rules after it leaves the EU, hoping to reassure businesses and law enforcement agencies that there will be no disruption to exchanges of information. (Reuters)

U.K. to Plan 'Unprecedented Alignment' With EU Over Data Sharing. The U.K. government is set to reveal plans that show it will adhere to European data-sharing rules, to minimize disruption for U.K.-based companies conducting business with the bloc. (Bloomberg)

Justin Trudeau, unlike Trump, is taking NAFTA renegotiation really seriously. While the United States spent most of last week embroiled in a controversy over whether some neo-Nazis are "fine people" and whether launching an armed rebellion against the federal government to preserve slavery is worth commemorating, the Canadian political system was mobilizing around the more prosaic subject of renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement. (Vox)

Bemused Canadians offer trade advice to Brexit Britain. A group of free market economists, including Patrick Minford and Roger Bootle, have issued a report arguing that a "hard" Brexit would benefit the UK economy and turn the country into a "driver of global free trade". (Financial Times)

Trump's threat of NAFTA withdrawal loses its edge. Canada and Mexico appear to have reached a conclusion that when President Donald Trump threatens to withdraw from NAFTA, it is a negotiating ploy that is all bark and no bite. (Politico Pro)

Global Economies Grow in Sync. For the first time in a decade, the world's major economies are growing in sync, a result of lingering low-interest-rate stimulus from central banks and the gradual fading of crises that over years ricocheted from the U.S. to Greece, Brazil and beyond. (Wall Street Journal)


A Hunt for Ways to Combat Online Radicalization. Law enforcement officials, technology companies and lawmakers have long tried to limit what they call the "radicalization" of young people over the internet. (New York Times)

Artificial Intelligence

China bought a third of the world's robots last year. China bought 90,000 robots and took a third of the market share in 2016, according to an International Federation of Robotics estimate. By 2019, they'll buy nearly 40% of new robots, the organization projects. (Axios)


California Approves That Environmental Regulations Don't Kill Profits. To anyone who believes environmental regulation is poison forprofits, California must be infuriating. (Wired)

This is why when you talk about climate change, you can't ignore agriculture. Agriculture has historically released almost as much carbon into the atmosphere as deforestation, a new study suggests - and that's saying something. (WashingtonPost)
White House advisory group warns of '9/11-level cyber attack'. A presidential advisory group is warning that the U.S. in not ready to cope with a catastrophic attack aimed at the U.S. power grid, communications systems and other critical infrastructure. (FCW)
McCain slams slow pace of cyber policy. A day after President Donald Trump called out Sen. John McCain for his vote against a Republican health care bill at a Phoenix rally, the senior senator from Arizona took aim at the administration's cybersecurity policy. (FCW)

Public Sector
White House details 2019 R&D priorities. The Trump administration is giving an early glimpse into its tech and research and development priorities for fiscal year 2019. (FCW)

Unfilled DHS slots no barrier to border wall effort. The Department of Homeland Security is led by an acting secretary and key component jobs remain unfilled, but expert observers say a lack of Senate-confirmed leaders won't be a significant obstacle to the border wall projects. (FCW)

New White House memo outlines the administration's research and development priorities. A memo from the Executive Office of the President released last week gives an overview of the research and development priorities agencies should consider in crafting fiscal year 2019 budget requests. (FedScoop)

GAO chief: CIO departures are 'an area of concern'. As far as most items on the Government Accountability Office's High-Risk list go, the problem of IT acquisition is a relative newbie. (FedScoop)


Visa hurdles hits home for Y Combinator startup. Changes to U.S. immigration policies may be abstract for many people, but for one startup, it was a very real roadblock. Y Combinator CEO Michael Seibel said that two of the three founders of a company in the latest cohort couldn't get the necessary visa to attend this summer's program. (Axios)

Congress was preparing for some immigration skirmishes. Trump wants a battle royal.The Trump administration has been active in changing immigration policy through the executive branch, but it's turning its sights toward Congress. (Vox)

Trump's Border-Wall Pledge Complicates GOP Efforts to Avoid Government Shutdown. President Donald Trump's threat to shut down the government if Congress doesn't approve funding for a wall along the Mexico border raised alarm among some GOP lawmakers, injecting new volatility into an already uncertain political climate this fall. (Wall Street Journal)

Trump Widens Rift With Congress as Critical Showdowns Loom. President Trump has widened an extraordinary rift with his own party, as he threatened a government shutdown over his long-promised border wall and attacked key lawmakers whose votes he needs heading into a crucial legislative period. (New York Times)


GE hosts camp to teach young girls STEM skills Summer Camp Teaches Stem Skills . It's a pledge to get 20,000 women in technical roles by 2020. GE is trying to accomplish that goal with a camp for young girls. (NBC)


Companies Promote Corporate-Tax Overhaul. Large companies, looking for every angle to prod Congress into making the corporate-tax changes they have been seeking for years, are turning to some in-house muscle: employees and customers. (Wall Street Journal)


FTC approves Amazon-Whole Foods deal. The Federal Trade Commission is giving the green light to Amazon's proposed $13.7 billion purchase of grocery chain Whole Foods. (The Hill)
Brazilian regulators are concerned by AT&T-Time Warner deal. Brazil's antitrust regulators say that AT&T's proposed merger with Time Warner should not be approved out of anticompetitive concerns, unless the companies agree to changes. (The Hill)

Internet of Things

Germany draws up rules of the road for driverless cars. Protecting people rather than property or animals will be the priority under pioneering new German legal guidelines for the operation of driverless cars, the transport ministry said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Tech Business

Dear iPhone: Here's Why We're Still Together After 10 Years. Dear iPhone: It's hard to believe we're still together after 10 years, which is eons in the tech industry. (New York Times)

Iceland Gets On-Demand Drone Deliveries. An Israeli autonomous drone delivery company has started commercial operations in Reykjavik, Iceland, one of the first in the world to offer the service on demand. (Bloomberg)
Iceland Gets On-Demand Drone Deliveries. An Israeli autonomous drone delivery company has started commercial operations in Reykjavik, Iceland, one of the first in the world to offer the service on demand. (Bloomberg)
New Trick for Reluctant Tech Unicorns: Bring the IPO to Them. A group of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs plans to launch an investment vehicle that will offer a richly valued technology startup an alternative route to public ownership. (Wall Street Journal)

ITI Member News

Google and Walmart in a joint offensive against Amazon. Walmart and Google are escalating a fierce battle to own virtual assistant shopping, jointly challenging Amazon's towering dominance over the already-lucrative new space in retail, per the WSJ's Jack Nicas and Laura Stevens. (Axios)

Google invites users to 'check if you're clinically depressed'. Google has changed the way it responds to people who are searching for information on depression, and will now invite US users to "check if you're clinically depressed" by using a clinically-validated screening questionnaire. (Financial Times)

Google and Walmart Partner With Eye on Amazon. Google and Walmart are testing the notion that an enemy's enemy is a friend. (New York Times)
Whole Foods shareholders approve sale to Amazon. Whole Foods Market Inc on Wednesday said shareholders in the natural and organic grocery chain cleared the way for its proposed $13.7 billion sale to Inc. (Reuters)
Samsung seeks to bury fiery past with Galaxy Note 8 launch. Samsung Electronics Co Ltd set out to wipe the slate clean in New York on Wednesday with the new Galaxy Note 8 phablet, hoping features like dual rear cameras and its biggest-ever screen will extinguish memories of its fire-prone predecessor. (Reuters)

Western Digital scrambles to assemble bid for Toshiba chip unit. US chipmaker Western Digital is scrambling to assemble a consortium to bid for Toshiba's prized memory business, as the Japanese conglomerate's lenders step up demands for a sale to be agreed by the end of this month, according to people familiar with the negotiations. (Financial Times)

Today on the Hill

Both chambers are not in session today.

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