Tesla announced that Robyn Denholm the financial chief of an Australian telecom company will replace Elon Musk as the company’s chairman after Musk was forced to step aside in a regulatory settlement. Google’s CEO announced various internal changes on Thursday in response to global employee walkouts over the company’s handling of sexual harassment allegations.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates made a plea for the safe disposal of human waste during a speech in China on Tuesday to kick of a three-day ‘Reinvented Toilet’ expo. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has spent seven years and $200 million on researching the topic. Twenty new products are on display at the expo.
Italy will fine Apple €10 million and Samsung €5 million after an investigation launched in January confirmed ‘planned obsolescence’ of their smartphones. The investigation was launched after accusations that updates slowed down older smartphones. Following protests by anti-gentrification activists, Google has dropped plans to open a campus to facilitate the creation of startups in Berlin.
The co-founder of Microsoft Paul Allen died of cancer complications in Seattle at the age of 65 on Monday. Allen’s death comes after he revealed he was being treated for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in early October. Allen dropped out of college along with Bill Gates to create Microsoft in the 1970s. He was the 27th-richest person in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Amazon stopped the use of a secret AI recruiting tool after the company’s machine-learning specialists realized the engine was biased against women. The programs were designed to review resumes and identify top talent. The machine vetted applicants based on 10-year patterns which resulted in male-dominated results. Amazon did not comment on the recruiting tool.
Google is closing down much of Google+ after it was revealed that as many as 500,000 users’ data was exposed to third parties due to a bug in the software. Facebook released smart speakers with cameras and microphones for home use in a direct challenge to Amazon, Google, and Apple.
The most recent Facebook hack which affected an estimated 50 million user accounts could cost the company more than $1 billion in fines. Criminal hackers used a security flaw to access accounts and put sensitive information at risk. Facebook discovered the hack on Tuesday but did not announce it until three days later on Friday.
Uber came to an agreement on Wednesday to pay $148 million to settle cases in 50 states over a 2016 data breach which affected 7 million drivers and 50 million customers globally. Uber’s former CEO, Travis Kalanick, paid hackers to keep the breach under wraps and Uber waited a year before publicly announcing the incident.
Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom and co-founder Mike Krieger have resigned from Facebook to ‘explore our curiosity and creativity again.’ Reports cite tension with Facebook and CEO Mark Zuckerberg as influencing the resignations. The resignations come at a difficult time for Facebook during a year of controversy and loss of public support.
Android users will be able to use Google’s mobile operating system in their cars starting in 2021. Google and the world’s biggest auto group Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance (RNMA) are partnering to develop a dedicated in-car system to control GPS and entertainment functions. Users will be able to download specific apps for cars through Android’s Play Store.