Science & Technology
What the future of work will mean for jobs, skills, and wages
The technology-driven world in which we live is a world filled with promise but also challenges. Cars that drive themselves, machines that read X-rays, and algorithms that respond to customer-service inquiries are all manifestations of powerful new forms of automation. Yet even as these technologies increase productivity and improve our lives, their use will substitute for some work activities humans currently perform—a development that has sparked much public concern.
Drone advocates press Congress to ease flight restrictions
The drone industry pleaded with Congress on Wednesday to ease restrictions on flight operations, warning that the U.S. is falling behind to other countries that are using the emerging technology in innovative ways. The use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) has exploded in recent years, with drones being deployed to monitor crops, fight wildfires, inspect infrastructure and assist with first response and hurricane recovery efforts.
Silicon Valley Struggles to Add Conservatives to Its Ranks
This summer, Twitter Inc.’s new diversity chief met employees to discuss whether they felt welcome at work. Among those who said they sometimes felt excluded, according to people familiar with the matter, were conservatives. The feedback reflects the strains in Silicon Valley as technology companies seek to bolster diversity of all kinds among their hundreds of thousands of employees.
Robots Threaten Bigger Slice of Jobs in US, Other Rich Nations
Economic think tank McKinsey Global Institute forecast changes in demand for different kinds of labor across 45 countries as technologies improve to perform physical or office tasks. One key result: Robots pose a more immediate and disruptive threat to the US middle class than they do to middle-income workers in less developed countries like India.
China Racing for AI Military Edge Over U.S.
A research arm of the U.S. intelligence community just wrapped up a competition to see who could develop the best facial recognition technology. The challenge: identify as many passengers as possible walking on an aircraft boarding ramp. Of all the entries, it was a Chinese start-up company called Yitu Tech that walked away with the $25,000 prize this month, the highest of three cash awards.
How tech is winning the Trump era
The conventional wisdom about the tech industry’s relationship with Donald Trump is that it's a street brawl, with Silicon Valley's liberal CEOs clashing with the president on everything from immigration to climate change to transgender rights. But the reality is that Silicon Valley is getting much of what it wants.
Stories in Science
The idea behind stories in science is relatively simple. We are surrounded by stories in science. Stories of success, failure, fear, discovery, serendipity, collaboration, separation, inspiration, mentorship, and so much more! It is these stories that fill the classrooms. It is these stories that are shared at home, during lunch, in laboratories, offices, and even in Nobel Prize winning speeches. We need to hear these stories. It is these stories that grab our attention. It is these stories that inspire us to keep going against all odds.
GOP bets that tax bill will unlock corporate cash overseas
Republicans and major technology firms who support a tax overhaul have touted reforms that they say will bring offshore profits back into the country, boosting U.S. tax revenue and benefiting the economy. But critics are skeptical of those claims, doubting that both the House and Senate versions of the tax bill give companies like Apple the incentive to bring money into the U.S. over the long term.
China Isn't Winning the Race for Space
Today, the most innovative research into space travel has shifted to the private sector, especially in the U.S. SpaceX's commercial rockets have not only cut the cost of launching into Earth orbit. They're precursors to bigger rockets the company hopes will send humans to Mars before the end of the 2020s, long before China's state-funded program achieves the same.
The FCC will vote on a new order to repeal net neutrality protections on December 14
Net neutrality is the concept that all internet traffic should be treated equally, no matter what internet service provider (ISPs) is carrying it. ISPs claim such rules stifle investment and innovation. Net neutrality advocates fear repealing net neutrality rules would allow ISPs to prioritize traffic, which would put more power in the hands of larger telecom companies.