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Articles written by Michael Liedtke

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Crusading tech mogul aims to prove CEOs can be activists too

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Salesforce founder Marc Benioff oversees a $130 billion software empire from a 62-story skyscraper that towers above everything else in San Francisco. But he sits uneasily in his lofty perch because of a worsening economic...

 

Antitrust regulators pounce on Big Tech as probes widen

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The crackdown on Big Tech is intensifying as flanks of the government across the U.S. try to rein in the industry's immense power. Nearly every state — California and Alabama being the notable exceptions — joined in a bipar...

 

Disney unveils new streaming service to debut late this year

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Disney raised the curtain on a hotly anticipated video steaming service that's aiming to topple industry pioneer Netflix, once a valuable ally of the Magic Kingdom. The service, called Disney Plus, has been in the works for mor...

 

Artificial intelligence pioneers win tech's 'Nobel Prize'

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Computers have become so smart during the past 20 years that people don't think twice about chatting with digital assistants like Alexa and Siri or seeing their friends automatically tagged in Facebook pictures. But making...

 

Zuckerberg promises a privacy-friendly Facebook, sort of

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Facebook, which grew into a colossus by vacuuming up your information in every possible way and using it to target ads back at you, now says its future lies in privacy-oriented messaging that Facebook itself can't read. Mark...

 

From corn to Apple: What's behind the US-China standoff

WASHINGTON (AP) — To hear the Americans tell it, the Chinese have gone on a commercial crime spree, pilfering trade secrets from seed corn to electronic brains behind wind turbines. China has stripped the arm off a T-Mobile robot, the U.S. says,...

 

Samsung folding phone is different - but also almost $2,000

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Samsung unveiled a highly anticipated smartphone with a foldable screen in an attempt to break the innovation funk that has beset the smartphone market. But it's far from clear that consumers will embrace a device that retails...

 

Apple releases update to prevent FaceTime eavesdropping

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple has released an iPhone update to fix a software flaw that allowed people to eavesdrop on others while using FaceTime. The bug enabled interlopers to turn an iPhone into a live microphone while using Group FaceTime....

 

From corn to Apple: The cases behind the US-China standoff

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration's case against Beijing is blunt: The Chinese have gone on a commercial crime spree, pilfering trade secrets from seed corn to electronic brains behind wind turbines. China has stripped the arm off a...

 

Netflix raising prices for 58M US subscribers as costs rise

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Netflix is raising its U.S. prices by 13 to 18 percent, its biggest increase since the company launched its video streaming service 12 years ago. Its most popular plan will see the largest hike, to $13 per month from $11. That...

 

Connected cars accelerate down data-collection highway

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — That holiday trip over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house could turn into nice little gift for automakers as they increasingly collect oodles and oodles of data about the driver. Automakers are collecting...

 

Apple to build new Austin hub, expand in other tech hotbeds

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Apple plans to build a $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas, that will create at least 5,000 jobs ranging from engineers to call-center agents while adding more luster to a Southwestern city that has already become a bustling tec...

 

Bug may have exposed photos from 7M Facebook users

NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook's privacy controls have broken down yet again, this time through a software flaw affecting nearly 7 million users who had photos exposed to a much wider audience than intended. The bug disclosed Friday gave hundreds of...

 

Google bows to worker pressure on sexual misconduct policy

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google is promising to be more forceful and open about its handling of sexual misconduct cases, a week after thousands of high-paid engineers and others walked out in protest over its male-dominated culture. Google bowed to...

 

Smartphone makers bet on foldable screens as next big thing

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — For the past few years, the smartphone industry has been searching for a breakthrough to revive a market mired in an innovation lull and a sales slump. A potential catalyst is on the horizon in the form of flexible screens...

 

Google employees leave work to protest treatment of women

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Carrying signs that included a mocking use of the company's original "Don't be evil" motto, thousands of Google employees around the world briefly walked off the job Thursday to protest what they said was the tech giant's...

 

Google spinoff to test truly driverless cars in California

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The robotic car company created by Google is poised to attempt a major technological leap in California, where its vehicles will hit the roads without a human on hand to take control in emergencies. The regulatory approval...

 

Facebook's election 'war room' takes aim at fake information

MENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) — In an otherwise innocuous part of Facebook's expansive Silicon Valley campus, a locked door bears a taped-on sign that reads "War Room." Behind the door lies a nerve center the social network has set up to combat fake...

 

Facebook wants people to invite its cameras into their homes

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Facebook is launching the first electronic device to bear its brand, a screen and camera-equipped gadget intended to make video calls easier and more intuitive. But it's unclear if people will open their homes to an...

 

Musk takes swipe at SEC on heels of fraud settlement

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Elon Musk is taunting the government regulators who threatened to oust him as CEO of electric carmaker Tesla just days after he settled a case alleging he duped investors. Musk used his Twitter account to jab the Securities...

 

Meet the farmers of the future: Robots

SAN CARLOS, Calif. (AP) — Brandon Alexander would like to introduce you to Angus, the farmer of the future. He's heavyset, weighing in at nearly 1,000 pounds, not to mention a bit slow. But he's strong enough to hoist 800-pound pallets of maturing...

 

The Apple Watch is inching toward becoming a medical device

CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) — Apple is trying to turn its smartwatch from a niche gadget into a lifeline to better health by slowly evolving it into a medical device. In its fourth incarnation, called Series 4 and due out later this month, the Apple Wat...

 

Apple expected to unveil bigger, pricier iPhone on Wednesday

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple is expected to unveil its biggest and most expensive iPhone on Wednesday as part of a lineup of three new models aimed at widening the product's appeal amid slowing sales growth. Most of the buzz is swirling around a...

 

As Google turns 20, questions over whether it's too powerful

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Twenty years after Larry Page and Sergey Brin set out to organize all of the internet's information, the search engine they named Google has morphed into a dominating force in smartphones, online video, email, maps and much...

 

Tesla CEO's buyout bid raises eyebrows, legal concerns

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Tesla CEO Elon Musk is seeking relief from the pressures of running a publicly held company with a $72 billion buyout of the electric car maker, but he may be acquiring new headaches with his peculiar handling of the proposed...

 

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