Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Wednesday.
1. Alex Stamos, Facebook’s head of security, called for a radical overhaul of how Facebook operates in a leaked memo from March 2018. He called for Facebook to collect less user data, stop focusing on growth, and to listen to concerns when people think a feature is “creepy.”
2. Google demonstrated an impressive new AI-enabled automated voice system that speaks and understands natural language much like the now-famous Duplex digital assistant. Dr. Fei-Fei Li, Google’s chief AI scientist, stressed that the intention of the technology is not to replace human customer service representatives.
3. Uber is putting its self-driving cars back on public roads for the first time since a fatal accident that resulted in the death of a pedestrian. The cars will operate only in “manual” mode, though, with a human driver in control at all times.
4.Google is bringing a host of new AI writing features to its G Suite apps. The company announced new smart replies for Hangouts, autocomplete for emails and grammar suggestions for Google Docs.
5. Facebook refuses to say if it has seen evidence of Russian meddling on its social network ahead of the 2018 US midterm elections. On a conference call with reporters on Tuesday, Facebook representatives were asked multiple times if they had seen evidence, but dodged the question.
6. Airbnb could be facing a huge blow in New York. Last week New York City councillors voted that the company has to hand over the names and addresses of its hosts, which the city will in turn use to crackdown on short-term home rentals.
7. Facebook is opening a subsidiary in China, even though the social media giant is blocked in the country. The company says it will launch an “innovation hub” to support local developers.
8. Tesla shares dropped over 4% after an embarrassing memo was leaked to the press. The memo showed the electric car company asking suppliers for refunds.
9. Apple apologised for the MacBook throttling ‘bug’ and released a software fix. Apple is rolling out an update to the 2018 MacBook Pros which should fix the controversial overheating issue, which Apple claims is caused by a firmware bug.
10. A billionaire known as ‘China’s Elon Musk’ is suspected of spying while he was a Duke student and stealing a professor’s invisibility technology. Liu Ruopeng studied at Duke University under David Smith, one of the world’s leading experts on metamaterials.
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