California Legislature extends cap-and-trade program

California lawmakers voted Monday evening to extend the state’s premier program on climate change, a victory for Gov. Jerry Brown. In a break with party leaders and activists in California and Washington, eight Republicans joined with Democrats to continue the cap-and-trade program, which requires companies to buy permits to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. (L.A. Times)

Caltrans begins modifying roads for self-driving cars

In yet another sign of the rapid advance of self-driving technology, California has already started adapting roads for autonomous vehicles, a new report says. Because autonomous and semi-autonomous cars use cameras to “see” road markings, those markings are being changed, Caltrans director Malcolm Dougherty told KPCC Southern California Public Radio.(Silicon Beat)

Leap Motion raises $50M for its hand-tracking technology

High-profile startup Leap Motion Inc. has raised $50 million in a later-stage round. Founded in 2010, Leap Motion, based in San Francisco, is developing hand-tracking for use in virtual and augmented reality worlds, allowing users to interact with those worlds using hand movements.(SiliconANGLE)

Pot shops don’t spark crime, UCI study says. Here’s why

Conventional wisdom says marijuana dispensaries make neighborhoods less safe, but a new study from UC Irvine suggests that crime increases after cities move to close pot shops. Dispensaries seem to behave much like restaurants and other mainstream businesses, a researcher said, helping to deter vehicle break-ins and other low-level crimes simply by putting more bystanders on the streets. (Orange County Register)

Government ‘cyber troops’ manipulate Facebook and Twitter

Governments around the world are enlisting “cyber troops” who manipulate Facebook, Twitter and other social media outlets to steer public opinion, spread misinformation and undermine critics, according to a new report from the University of Oxford. Adding to growing evidence of government-sponsored efforts to use online tools to influence politics, researchers found 29 countries using social media to shape opinion domestically or with foreign audiences. (Ad Age)

Jury: Railroad to pay $3.9M for train death of film worker

A railroad owner must pay $3.9 million to the family of a movie worker killed on a Georgia railroad trestle in 2014, a jury decided Monday in civil verdict. The jury found that the company shared in the blame for the deadly freight train collision even though the film crew was trespassing.(Fox Business)

Microsoft, Google back strong net neutrality

Microsoft and Google pleaded with U.S. regulators on Monday to preserve strong net neutrality rules. AT&T and Verizon Communications backed weakened oversight and said Congress should settle the issue that’s burned for more than a decade. (Ad Age)

Your smartphone’s internet speed will get way faster in 2019

There’s no question that superfast, fifth-generation mobile networks are coming. But when will consumers get to connect to these 5G systems?(Fast Company)

U.S. makes lower trade deficit top priority in NAFTA talks

The United States launched the first salvo in the renegotiation of the 23-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, saying its top priority for the talks was shrinking the U.S. trade deficit with Canada and Mexico. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said he would seek to reduce the trade imbalance by improving access for U.S. goods exported to Canada and Mexico under the three-nation pact. (Automotive News)

Google’s quantum computing opens new front in cloud battle

For years, Google has poured time and money into one of the most ambitious dreams of modern technology: building a working quantum computer. Now the company is thinking of ways to turn the project into a business.(Ad Age)


Photo: G.J. Hart, CEO of California Pizza Kitchen
“I wanted to know how people on the front lines viewed things.”
G.J. Hart, CEO of California Pizza Kitchen
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SoundCloud explores underground music scenes in miniseries (Engadget)
Starting up outside Silicon Valley can lay the groundwork (Entrepreneur)
Chrysler Pacifica cruises with new partner Sesame Street (Automotive News)
Ferry to return to service after crash that injured 18 (Fox Business)
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