Author: Darrell Etherington

Uber blocked from testing self-driving cars on Arizona roads

Uber has been barred from testing its self-driving cars on public roads in Arizona following the accident last week involving one of its testing vehicles that killed a pedestrian crossing the street in its path. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey released a letter sent to Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi in which he described the accident as captured by onboard cameras as “disturbing and alarming.” The governor, who has been a strong proponent of self-driving testing in the state up until this point, advocating for Uber and other companies to bring their programs to Arizona roads, also directed the Arizona Department...

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Lynk & Co reveals the 02 crossover SUV and details European rollout plans

Geely’s Lynk & Co is one of the more interesting young automotive brands, with an approach to sales and marketing that more closely resembles modern gadget and lifestyle brand go-to-market strategy than traditional automaker sales. The Lynk & Co 01 SUV, designed to sit somewhere between Geely’s line on one end and Volvo’s vehicles on the other, debuted last year; now the company is revealing its 02, a more compact crossover SUV, again designed with mobility, connectivity, and the potential for shared use in mind. The 02 was designed and engineered in Sweden, Lynk & Co says, by a...

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Aurora hires SpaceX’s Jinnah Hosein, opens SF and Pittsburgh offices

Self-driving technology company Aurora has made some key moves on its leadership team and overall company growth: It’s bringing on SpaceX’s now former head of software engineering, Jinnah Hosein, to lead its own software engineering team in a VP role. The autonomous software provider is also opening up two new offices, including one in San Francisco, and another in Pittsburgh, in addition to its existing HQ in Palo Alto. Bringing on Hosein is a huge move for Aurora, which will now have some additional senior leadership taken to help direct and organize its growing engineering team, according to Aurora co-founder Chris Urmson. Hosein’s background includes his time as VP of Software Engineering at SpaceX, where he spent the past four years and oversaw projects including the recent successful Falcon Heavy launch. Before that, he was Director of Software Engineering at Google working on Google Cloud, site reliability and other software projects. “It’s a pretty incredible set of experiences he has,” Urmson said. “We’re just excited about him bringing that leadership capability, that experience in building both cloud and incredibly reliable software to our team and working with the rest of the folks here.” Hosein also worked for a brief time overseeing Tesla’s software operations as well as SpaceX’s when he served as acting VP of Tesla’s Autopilot Software prior to Tesla hiring Apple’s Chris Lattner for the role. Urmson...

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FedEx reserves 20 Tesla Semi all-electric big rig trucks

FedEx is the latest major logistics company to lock in an order for Tesla’s forthcoming Semi electric Class 8 trailer trucks. The shipping provider has ordered 20 of the vehicles, according to a press release from FedEx itself, which will go into service in its FedEx Freight department. The FedEx order is dwarfed by rival UPS’s initial commitment: Big brown laid down reservations for 125 of the Tesla trucks late last year, shortly following the vehicle’s initial unveiling. FedEx Freight CEO Mike Ducker said in a statement that the company’s investment in this initiate reservation is part of its...

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Elon Musk’s next Boring Co. merch will be big Lego bricks made from tunnel rock

Elon Musk’s The Boring Company is indeed living up to its namesake and boring tunnels, but its primary source of revenue still seems to be selling stuff branded with its logo. First there was the hat, then the ‘not a flamethrower,’ and now Musk has said that the company will produce and sell large, “lifesize” interlocking bricks created using rock collected while the company’s boring machines dig out tunnels under the earth. These will be “super strong,” but with their middles hollowed out to make them lighter and easier to actually move around and use. They’re “rated for California...

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Elon Musk deletes own, SpaceX and Tesla Facebook pages after #deletefacebook

Elon Musk apparently wasn’t aware that his company SpaceX had a Facebook page. The SpaceX and Tesla CEO has responded to a comment on Twitter calling for him to take down the SpaceX, Tesla and Elon Musk official pages in support of the #deletefacebook movement by first acknowledging he didn’t know one existed, and then following up with a promise that he would indeed take it down. He’s done just that, as the SpaceX Facebook page is now gone, after having been live earlier today (as you can see from the screenshot included taken at around 12:10 PM ET)....

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The NEEO universal remote is a modern Logitech Harmony alternative

The advanced universal remote market is not a very crowded market. In fact, for a while now, Logitech’s Harmony line has been pretty much the only game in town. Newcomer NEEO wants to upset that monopoly with its new NEEO Remote and NEEO Brain combo ($369), which is a system that can connect just about any AV system, along with a smorgasbord of connected smart devices including Nest, Philips Hue, Sonos and more. NEEO’s two-part system includes the Brain, which, true to its name, handles all of the heavy lifting. This is a puck-shaped device with 360-degree IR blasters dotting its outside perimeter, and which has one IR extender out (there’s one in the box) for connecting devices held within a closed AV cabinet, for instance. This central hub also connects to your Wi-Fi network, and setup requires plugging it into your router via Ethernet to get everything squared away, similar to how you initially set up Sonos speakers, if you’re familiar with that process. Most of the setup work you need to do to get NEEO working happens on your phone, and that’s where it becomes apparent that this smart remote was designed for a modern context. Logitech’s Harmony software has come a long way, and now you can do everything you need to do from the iOS and Android app, but it’s still somewhat apparent that its...

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Nissan targets sales of 1 million EVs annually by 2022

Nissan is hoping to achieve a target of selling 1 million electrified vehicles across its portfolio by its fiscal 2022, the automaker announced today. The target is part of its overarching strategic mid-term plan leading up to 2022. To be included in the sales total, models sold by Nissan need to either be pure electric or e-POWER vehicles (Nissan’s hybrid system that delivers the performance benefits of a fully-electric powertrain with the range and refuelling benefits of an internal combustion engine). The overall strategy to help get Nissan to that milestone also includes the release of eight new purely...

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