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Tech News Roundup - 02/07/2018

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Tech Politics
ITI taps Hill Democratic aide to lobby on artificial intelligence, internet of things. The Information Technology Industry Council has hired the chief of staff to Rep. Eric Swalwell to lobby Capitol Hill Democrats on issues like artificial intelligence and the internet of things. (ITI Dean Garfield Quoted, Politico Pro)

Apple Tells Senate It May Offer Rebates for Battery Purchases Amid iPhone Blowback. Company is looking to sharpen response to iPhone slowdown after scrutiny from customers and regulators. (Wall Street Journal)
In Washington, British officials to confront Facebook, Google and Twitter over misinformation. In a rare move, some members of the British Parliament are traveling to Washington this week to question Facebook, Google and Twitter about fake news and the spread of misinformation on their platforms. (Washington Post)
Senators slam Uber over 2016 data breach. Senators blasted Uber over their handling of a 2016 data breach and how it might affect a cybersecurity incentive program used to hide the breach from the public at a Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing Tuesday. (Axios)

House passes stopgap spending bill to avert shutdown. The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday approved another stopgap bill to keep the federal government from shutting down, hours after President Donald Trump said he would "love" to see a shutdown if immigration legislation were not included. (Reuters)

Trump Threatens Shutdown as Negotiators Close In on Budget Deal. President Trump called on Tuesday for shutting down the federal government if Congress does not crack down on illegal immigration, even as congressional negotiators closed in on a major budget deal that would set spending levels for two years and break the cycle of fiscal crises that has bedeviled the nation's capital. (New York Times)
Top Senators Pursue 2-Year Budget Deal. Congressional leaders were on the cusp of striking a two-year budget deal Tuesday to boost federal spending levels for both the military and domestic programs, after separating for now a stalled immigration fight from efforts to keep the government funded. (Wall Street Journal)
White House Says Congress Must Accept Its Terms on Immigration. Chief of Staff John Kelly says he doubts the administration would extend the 'Dreamers' program beyond March 5 without a legislative fix. (Wall Street Journal)
Global Trade
U.S. Trade Deficit Grew to $566 Billion in 2017, Its Widest Mark in Nine Years. Goods deficit with China hit record $375.2 billion. (Wall Street Journal)
China Fires Back at U.S. on Trade, Challenging Tariffs. Beijing files petition with World Trade Organization, arguing tariffs "are not consistent" with international rules. (Wall Street Journal)

Trump said he'd shrink the trade deficit with China. It just hit a record high. The trade deficit with China hit a record high in 2017, defying President Trump's repeated promises to shrink a number that he regards as a test of whether other nations are treating the United States fairly. (Washington Post)

Artificial Intelligence

A down day on the markets? Analysts say blame the machines. As the Dow Jones industrial average collapsed 700 points in 20 minutes Monday afternoon and the stock market jerked from bad to cataclysmic, traders and analysts coalesced around an increasingly routine explanation: Blame the machines. (Washington Post)


Apple's Bid for Data-Rich Shazam Is Drawing Scrutiny in Europe. Several European countries asked Brussels to take over review due to potential impact on competition. (Wall Street Journal)

Public Sector

OMB's user guide to the MGT Act. The Office of Management and Budget is working on a rules-of-the-road document to cover how agencies can seek funds under the Modernizing Government Technology Act. (Federal Computer Week)

Trump administration announces new cyber office at State. The Trump administration announced a proposal to create a new State Department bureau to handle cyberspace and the digital economy. (Federal Computer Week)
Treasury's Mnuchin says he wants answers on Equifax breach. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Tuesday said he wants to know how the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is handling a probe into a hack of credit bureau Equifax Inc after a report that the agency's chief has pulled back from investigating the matter. (Reuters)

Hatch introduces bipartisan bill to clarify cross-border data policies. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) on Monday introduced a bill aimed at creating a clearer framework for law enforcement to access data stored in cloud computing systems. (The Hill)

Internet of Things

Waymo v Uber's big question: What on earth is a trade secret, anyway?. On the stand in San Francisco today, former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick appeared calm, cool, and well-hydrated, sipping from a series of tiny water bottles while serenely fielding questions from the legal team at Waymo, the Alphabet self-driving car effort that is suing Uber for trade secret theft. (Wired)

Ex-Uber CEO: Google was ahead in self-driving cars. Ex-Uber CEO Travis Kalanick admitted in testimony in the Waymo-Uber trial Tuesday that he saw Google (later Waymo) as the leader in self-driving cars, and that his company needed to catch up as a matter of its future existence. (Axios)

Job automation will hurt women first but will ultimately hurt men more. In late 2017, the McKinsey Global Institute estimated that automation and other new technology could mean that 375 million people around the world will need to change occupations to avoid being completely put out of work by machines. (Quartz)

Facebook's Sandberg Says #MeToo Movement Hasn't Gone Far Enough. Facebook Inc. Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg says the #MeToo movement, which has spurred women to share stories of sexual harassment, can spark lasting change in workplace policies and culture. (Bloomberg)
Whose boats is tech really lifting? In October 2017, Reps. Barbara Lee and G.K. Butterfield traveled to Silicon Valley to deliver a message to the executives of major tech companies: They need to get serious about diversifying their workforces and adding black members to their boards. (Politico)


Why a Big Utility Is Embracing Wind and Solar. In parts of the country, wind and solar plants built from scratch now offer the cheapest power available, even counting old coal, which was long seen as unbeatable. (New York Times, OpEd)
Tech Business

Snapchat overhaul convinces investors it can fight Instagram. Snapchat owner Snap Inc on Tuesday reported surging growth in users and revenue in its latest quarter, reviving hopes that it can survive competition with Facebook Inc's Instagram and sending its shares up more than 20 percent. (Reuters)

Netflix, Amazon, Tesla, Facebook and Google are all performing better than the Dow or the S&P 500 for the year. It's been a rough few days for the stock market. But it hasn't been that bad for tech. (Recode)

ITI Member News

Samsung to begin investing in new domestic memory chip line: Yonhap. Samsung Electronics Co Ltd has decided to begin investment to build a second memory chip line at its Pyeongtaek production facilities in South Korea, Yonhap news agency reported on Wednesday. (Reuters)
Alphabet's drone delivery division has added an Amazon veteran to its leadership team. The hiring of Faisal Masud, most recently Staples' CTO, could signal that Project Wing is close to graduating out of the company's 'moonshot factory.' (Recode)
Alphabet names former Time Warner Cable executive to lead internet unit. Alphabet Inc said it named a former Time Warner Cable chief operating officer as chief executive officer of its internet service company, marking the unit's third CEO in less than two years. (Reuters)
One HQ2 Finalist City Is Promising Amazon a 'Blank Check'. As the fight for Amazon's second headquarters rages, government officials are pulling out all the stops to convince the online marketplace to choose their city. (Fortune)

Today on the Hill

The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business.
The Senate will convene at 11:30 a.m. and resume consideration of the House Message to accompany H.R.695, the vehicle for FY2018 Department of Defense Appropriations.
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