You wont have to wait too long for a Purism Librem Laptop

first_imgEver since Edward Snowden became the poster boy in the fight for privacy, especially against government espionage, there have been countless devices and operating systems advertised to not only respect but even protect users’ privacy, sometimes to extreme measures. Very few, however, met the same popularity and financial renown as these Librem Laptops.Starting out as a crowdfunded project in 2015, Purism’s Librem 13 and Librem 15 laptops aimed to offer the best of both worlds of current computer specs and a strong focus on privacy. On the one hand, you have the then latest sixth gen Core i5 and i7 processors, with 8 to 16 GB of RAM, and other staples of respectable hardware.On the other hand, you also have things like hardware switches to completely cut off power to the camera and mic as well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, assuring users that these turn off exactly when you turn them off. The laptops also run PureOS, a variant of the Debian Linux operating system known for having a hardline stance against anything proprietary, from software to codecs to even web services.Despite its success in crowdfunding and raising some seed funding, getting your hands on a Librem Laptop used to require patience. Purism, however, saw a jump in demand for this privacy-protecting devices and have started to stock up on inventory to shorten the waiting period between purchase and delivery. Nothing else has changed, and the Librem 13 and Librem 15 still cost $1,699 to $1,999, depending on the model and configuration. The 11-inch model’s availability still remains in limbo.SOURCE: Purism Although the chatter, whistleblowing, and mudslinging revolving around data privacy and security have somewhat died down, it hasn’t completely vanished and is perhaps more critical than ever before. That is perhaps why Purism, the folks behind the privacy-focused Librem Laptops, have decided to take a more mainstream approach to their sales, shipping the laptops in just weeks after paying for one instead of the months-long waiting period before.last_img read more

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Google Assistant headphones revealed in code

first_imgAs explained by the folks over at 9to5Google, we now know that “Bisto” is the codename for these Google Assistant headphones. Such headphones have been rumored here and there for quite some time, but this is pretty solid evidence for their existence. The code in the APK gives us an early idea of some of the features these headphones will have if they ever actually arrive.According to 9to5Google’s teardown, the code within the APK refers to a message that users will see when they pair their headphones with their device: “Your headphones have the Google Assistant. Ask it questions. Tell it to do things. It’s your own personal Google, always ready to help.” It sounds like Google Assistant will have all of its standard talents when used through these headphones, though it may also have some extra abilities as well.For instance, the code lurking within the Google app suggests that these headphones will let users hear their notifications and reply to them with voice. It also refers to physical control buttons on the headphones themselves, along with their ability to receive OTA updates. It’s fairly standard stuff, but regardless, it gives us a glimpse into a product that could be incoming.As always, just because references are found lurking in code, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Google Assistant headphones are a sure thing. They won’t be a sure thing until Google officially unveils them, so until that happens, you probably shouldn’t get your hopes up. With that out of the way, it does make some degree of sense that Google would release such a product, especially if it’s trying to show that its own AI assistant is better than Apple’s Siri. The good news is that if Google is planning to announce a pair of Google Assistant headphones, we probably aren’t that far off from a reveal. It stands to reason that Google would announce them alongside the Pixel 2, so we could know more about them in the next month or two. Stay tuned, because this is an interesting find that will hopefully be followed by a reveal soon. It isn’t all that often we get excited about an update to Android’s standard Google app, but on this day of extraterrestrial happenings, we’re shaking things up a bit. A beta version of the Google app – version 7.10 to be precise – has landed, and a teardown of the APK reveals something very interesting. As it turns out, Google may be plotting a pair of headphones that run Google Assistant. Story TimelineThe best new Google Assistant feature is the simplest thing [APK Download]Chromebook Google Assistant is on the way, OK Google going outChromebook Google Assistant key revealed in dev screenshotAndroid Wear Google Assistant bug leaves owners powerlesslast_img read more

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Amazon gives teens their own login but parents retain power

first_imgAmazon is giving teenagers a bit of independence by allowing them to place their own orders under their own login while using their parent(s) Prime subscription. Parents must add their teens (aged 13 to 17) to their Household account, a free process, after which point the teens are able to use their own login more or less as if it were their own independent account. The idea here seems to be establishing an independent way for teenagers to begin taking over control of their own shopping, but not completely independently of their parents. The For Teens login is only made possible if the parent agrees, and parents ultimately retain the power over their teen’s shopping habits, including settings spending limits and having the ability to deny an order.Teens who are interested in using their own login can get the ball rolling by texting their parents an invitation. The parent will need to setup the shipping address and payment method, after which point an invitation is sent back to the teen. From there, the teenager is free to create their own username and password and then use that to log into the Amazon App. For them it will feel like having their own account.For parents, an email or text message is sent when the order is ‘placed’ — that is, when the teen is ready to order, but the item isn’t actually purchased yet. Parents are shown the item, how much it costs, and similar details, as well as any note about it the teen may have made. Parents then approve or deny the order, though the system can be set to automatically approve orders if desired.Pre-approving orders is done alongside establishing a spending limit, meaning that while the teen can order anything they want, they can only do such up to a certain price before the ability is taken away. In this case, the parent will receive a notification with an itemized list of the order, and the option remains to cancel it or initiate a refund if it is too late to cancel. Customers can sign up for the option here.SOURCE: BusinessWirelast_img read more

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Amazon Echo Plus Review

first_imgAmazon’s smart home dream sounds an awful lot like living on the Starship Enterprise, and in that dream the new Echo Plus is there gateway to an automated future. At $149.99, it undercuts the original Amazon Echo it so closely resembles, but counts on better audio quality and an integrated smart home hub to warrant its premium over the 2017 Echo and the bargain Echo Dot. As I found, though, Alexa’s insistence on treating all her Echo children as equal may undercut some of the Echo Plus’ advantages. MORE Amazon Echo (2017) ReviewAmazon’s positioning with the Echo Plus is that it’s a route to better quality audio than the regular model, important since ordering your playlists around by voice has become one of the more popular use-cases for Alexa. In reality, though, there’s not a huge difference in the speaker hardware inside. The Echo Plus has a 2.5-inch woofer, like the 2017 Echo, but enlarges the tweeter slightly from 0.6-inches to 0.8-inches. Just a little PlusGiven that fact, it’s perhaps unsurprising that the Echo Plus doesn’t deliver Sonos One-rivaling levels of audio quality. Side by side with the original Echo, and audio quality seemed roughly on a par. Compared to the smaller Echo of this year, there’s a little more bass and the high-end is fuller. Still, audiophiles will probably want to hook up a separate speaker system, and if you’re doing that you may as well go for the Echo Dot at a third of the price. Since Alexa’s smarts are all in the cloud, her talents are the same no matter which Echo you’re using. The recent addition of voice-based user profiles, which after some brief training can recognize who is speaking and serve up personalized results, closes what was one of the few lingering big gaps between Amazon’s system and Google’s Assistant on the Google Home. There’s multi-room music support too, much like Sonos, though the Echo Plus doesn’t come close to the Sonos One for sound.Alexa, Queen of the Smart HomeWhat the Echo Plus has that none of those rivals offer is baked-in smart home support. Amazon has added a Zigbee radio to the speaker, allowing it to act as a hub for connected bulbs, locks, and more. That works hand in hand with a new Alexa feature called Routines. Zigbee has been around for years, and has fairly broad adoption across home automation devices. Compared to WiFi and Bluetooth it has very low power requirements, but it’s not the only wireless standard popular in the smart home. Z-Wave, for instance, is a competing standard that has also been around for years, while newer options like Thread are being pushed too. The result is that the Echo Plus has out-of-the-box support for some smart home gadgets, but not all.Setting up those for which it does have support is straightforward. In fact, you can do it all by voice: connect a new device, say “Alexa, discover devices,” and then after about 45 seconds you’re told that “1st light” or “1st outlet” has been found. Alternatively, you can do it through the app, which is also where you can rename discovered devices so that they’re easier to remember. What’s new here is the direct communication between the Echo Plus and each device. Amazon sent a couple of Philips Hue lights and a Samsung smart outlet along for me to try: usually, the Hue lights would need a Philips hub plugged into your router, while the outlet is designed to work with SmartThings’ hub. Instead, the Echo Plus connects to them directly, and indeed Amazon will initially be bundling it with a free Hue white bulb to get new smart home users started. Familiar, but differentWhereas the 2017 Echo gets a shorter, cuter design and interchangeable covers, the new Echo Plus feels much more like an upgrade to the original Echo. At 9.3-inches tall, and finished in either black, white, or silver plastic, it’s less cuddly than the smaller, cheaper 2017 Echo, but keeps some of the first-generation model’s more appealing features. The volume ring built into the top of the smart speaker is easier to adjust than its siblings’ buttons. You still get a manual Alexa button, as well as a microphone mute key for the excellent seven-mic array. On the back, there’s the power socket and a 3.5mm audio-out socket, allowing you to plug in external speakers. You still get Bluetooth to pair up wireless speakers if you prefer, and there’s a more powerful 802.11ac WiFi chipset inside which improves range. center_img Once everything is recognized, you can control things individually or in groups. There’s support for commands like “Alexa, turn on light one,” or “Alexa, dim light one to 50-percent,” for instance. You also get basic control in the Alexa app, but invariably it’s not as comprehensive as the manufacturers’ own software would be. For instance, I have some Hue color bulbs, and whereas within the Hue app I can adjust their colors across millions of values, with the Echo Plus I have to ask for colors by name since the app doesn’t give me a color-picker. More annoying, since the Echo Plus does away with Hue’s own hub, Philips’ app won’t work.Rather than granular control, Amazon is pushing its enhanced grouping support, though it can be a little complicated. Alexa already had support for Groups – all the devices in the kitchen, say, or in the bedroom – but now you can assign an Echo to a Group. If, say, you walk into the bedroom and say “Alexa, turn on the lights,” the bedroom Echo will hear you and automatically understand that you probably want the lights in that room to be turned on.However, there are also now Routines, which are effectively macros of multiple smart home actions that happen together. Saying “Alexa, good night” can shut off all the lights and lock the doors, for instance, while saying “Alexa, good morning” could raise the thermostat, turn on the coffee machine connected to a smart outlet, and begin your Echo Flash Briefing. Instead of a spoken command, you can also set a Routine to happen at a certain time, including different settings according to whether it’s a weekday or the weekend. After that you choose which smart home devices you want to activate, and whether you want news, traffic, or weather reports too, or all three. It’s all fairly basic – there’s no conditional triggers, for instance, like having the Echo Plus run Routines based on motion sensors being activated or if the temperature drops below a certain level, and you can’t have specific songs or playlists played – but should give those new to automation a taste of what’s possible. Of course, you don’t actually need an Echo Plus in order to get that taste. Any of the other Echo devices can connect with smart home gadgets, either via a web interface or a manufacturer’s hub, just as they could before. If you have Hue lights installed via Philips’ bridge, for instance, an Echo Dot will be able to connect to them just as well as an Echo Plus can, and get added to the same Groups. Unfortunately it seems Routines are more picky: many of the existing smart home devices I have gave me a “not currently supported” error message when I tried to add them to a new Routine. Wrap-upAmazon’s argument for the Echo Plus is that setting up the smart home can be time-consuming and needlessly complex, a tangle of hubs and interfaces just to get each thing talking to the other. That’s not untrue, though there remain benefits from doing it that way. The Echo Plus supports the basics via Alexa voice control, but anybody wanting more granular control will find the app woefully slim. As long as you’re willing to buy Zigbee-connected devices from Amazon’s list of recommended products you shouldn’t have a problem with compatibility, but right now that’s about 100 items. Rival hubs like SmartThings, which will work happily with Alexa too, count supported devices in the thousands. Throw in an Echo Dot – of which you can buy three for the cost of a single Echo Plus – and you get Amazon’s Routines too.It leaves the Echo Plus in an intriguing but difficult position today. The promise is more smart home device support in time, but the audio improvements I was hoping for haven’t really arrived over the first-generation Echo, and I missed being able to control, say, my Hue lights from my smartwatch or the widgets on my iPhone, rather than having to give the Echo Plus a spoken instruction or try the underwhelming Alexa app. Streamlining the smart home is a noble goal, but the Echo Plus plays it a little too simple to warrant the premium over a regular Echo (2017) or Echo Dot.last_img read more

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Adobe Creative Cloud 2 years later I begrudgingly submit

first_imgThe cheapest of these subscriptions is the Photography plan. This $10 plan includes Lightroom CC, Lightroom CC, and Photoshop CC as well as 20GB of cloud storage. The version of Creative Cloud I’ve been using is the “All Apps” plan. That costs approximately $50/mo paid monthly for an annual plan, $600 for an annual plan paid once per year, or $75/mo monthly (without the annual plan). The All Apps plan includes 23+ creative desktop and mobile apps. Basically more apps than you’ll ever need or want to use. This All Apps plan includes 100GB of cloud storage, a personal portfolio website, premium fonts, and social media tools. FULL DISCLOSURE: Adobe provided a temporary license to test some features and to see firsthand how updates affected each app. Adobe did not demand any sort of press coverage in return, and this miniature review was written voluntarily and in as fair and objective a manner as possible. Story TimelineLightroom CC leads huge Adobe updates ahead of MAX 2017Adobe Scribbler AI can create a realistic color image from a sketchAdobe Scan taps AI to find documents in your phone’s camera roll I use Photoshop almost every day of my life, and for the past two years, I’ve used Adobe Creative Cloud. When the cloud services for the whole Adobe app suite were first announced, I had reservations. Partially because I’d been using my very very old copy of Photoshop from a half-decade ago and it hadn’t caused me any major trouble until then. Partially because I didn’t realize how much I’d use Adobe apps if they were available in the way the company made them available with Adobe Creative Cloud. Two years after I first started using Adobe Creative Cloud apps – and their connected mobile apps, and the services they provide in-between, I can’t imagine going back. Not that it’s an option to go back to the old offline way, really, but I no longer want to go back. Working with this suite of apps is highly decent, just so long as it includes Adobe support, switching between computers and mobile devices, and updates both often and substantial. As long as Adobe continues to dedicate themselves to Adobe Creative Cloud, it’ll probably be worth the cash.At the time this article was published, several subscription plans were available for individuals, and others were available for Business, Students and Teachers, and Schools and Universities use. Individuals had the ability to pay between approximately $10 and $80 per month for different sets of features. I’m not a huge fan of the current trend of software companies and media companies selling their products with subscription fees. I’ll always be a “don’t rent, own” sort of person at heart. Despite my underlying distrust of subscription services, I subscribe to Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify too. I can’t help but enjoy using the subscription services that do their job well. I do creative work all the time – both in and out of my job here at SlashGear. Adobe Creative Cloud made it possible for me to experiment with the brand’s full collection of apps. Several of those included with a regular Creative Cloud subscription were apps I might never before have tried for myself. Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro added a new dimension to my video-making abilities. Before Adobe CC, I’d relied on whatever free video app I had on hand. That worked, to a point. Once I started using CC, I realized I could create an intro video for my otherwise-decent videos that looked a whole lot more professional than what I’d had before. I could also could edit in an environment that wasn’t limited by Apple’s iMovie standards. Recently I’ve been making use of the wide variety of fonts that are free to use for Creative Cloud users. These are fonts that elevate my game to a new degree with lettering I might never have taken the time to access. That’s ended up being a recurring theme in my experience with Adobe Creative Cloud – finding features, elements, and tools I might never have known existed before, using those bits and pieces to make my media game a whole lot better than it’s been before. I’m still not completely out of the old-school ownership camp for software. But to Adobe’s credit, they’ve created a compelling service here, one that’s better than anything they’ve offered before for those that can afford it. BELOW: Just a few examples of bits of media made possible by the subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud apps I’m writing about here. last_img read more

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Google Contacts can send money via Google Pay Send

first_imgThis is actually more a convenience feature than a ground-breaking new one. What it does is simply let you start the process of sending payment by picking out the contact you want to send the money to rather than trying to compose a message first. It’s admittedly a more natural way of thinking about sending or paying money.What the feature doesn’t do yet, however, is let you request for payment, which you can do on Android Messages. That might simply be a feature that’s still coming, as the text for it was already unearthed by Android Police’s Google Contacts APK teardown.Another unique feature with this Google Contacts integration is that you can choose what method to send the payment message through. Android Messages naturally defaults to SMS, but from Google Contacts you can pick from SMS, email, or others. The rest of the process and features remain the same.AdChoices广告While you’ll need the latest Google Contacts version to actually have the capability, the switch that enables that is going to happen from Google’s side. At the moment though, except for that one user sighting, it doesn’t seem to be working yet. Google Pay Send isn’t the catchiest name for a product, but don’t knock it simply for its name. It is, after all, the Google answer to Apple’s relatively new direct peer-to-peer payment option in Apple Pay. But while Google Pay Send does already let you send or even request payment directly from the Android Messages app, Google is taking half a step further but by letting you do all that from within the Google Contacts app as well.last_img read more

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Huawei Honor 8X confirms a new notch trend

first_imgGranted, this super small notch design isn’t totally new. The Essential PH-1, first (on the market) smartphone with a notch had a cutout only a little bigger than its front camera. The two OPPO phone’s we’ve seen so far shrink that even further into a “v” shaped cutout. And they managed to do that by pushing the earpiece speaker slit way up to the top.The Honor 8X, or 8S, will seemingly follow in OPPO’s footsteps, though it’s not so clear yet whether it will take the same approach with the front speaker. That revelation comes via a TENAA entry for a certain ARE-AL00, which is believed to be the Honor 8X. Either that or it will be called the Honor 8S. The notch has become an inescapable fact of smartphone life this year but some manufacturers just refuse to live in Apple’s shadow. There’s a certain irony in how Chinese manufacturers often accused of always aping the iPhone’s designs are the very ones trying to differentiate themselves from the crowd. But not everyone wants or can afford elevating cameras and some seem to have a found another path forward. That is exemplified by the “V” style notch on the OPPO R17, OPPO F9, and, soon, the Honor 8X. Thankfully, this is a TENAA filing, which gives us almost all the specs we need to know about the smartphone. That includes a 1.8 GH octa-core processor, believe to be either the Snapdragon 660 or 636, 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage, a 16 megapixel rear camera with a 2 megapixel depth sensor, and an 8 megapixel front shooter. It will be running Android 8.1 Oreo, not 9 Pie, out of the box.It’s definitely interesting to see these takes on the notch. Like the notch itself, it’s probably going to win fans and turn off others. There’s really no pleasing everyone.last_img read more

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Windows 10 October 2018 update now available dark mode and more

The update, by all accounts, isn’t a major one — at least not in the sense that you’ll be seeing anything substantial arrive. There are some notable changes, though, such as the arrival of Your Phone, an app for texting from a PC assuming you have an Android phone and Microsoft’s mobile app.Multi-device projects get a bit easier in general thanks to the new ability to sync between devices, as well, bringing clipboard content from one PC to another. The Windows screenshot tool has received an update, and there’s a new dark mode for Files Explorer. Other changes include faster sign-in features, a new web sign-in, the addition of SwiftKey in the touch keyboard, and more. If that’s exciting enough to warrant a manual download rather than waiting for automatic to start on October 9, read on.Windows 10 PC users can head over to this software download page on Microsoft’s website and click the “Download tool” option for updating. This tool will install the latest October update for Windows 10. If this sounds like too much work, remain patient: Microsoft will push out the update as an Automatic Update in the next week or so. Microsoft is releasing the Windows 10 2018 update, the one it announced back in late August. The availability was confirmed by Microsoft today during a press event, its name referring to the month of its release, of course. Though anyone can manually update now, automatic updates will take a handful of days to start. read more

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This Huawei decision seems like a terrible idea

Story TimelineEvery phone needs this genius Huawei Mate 20 Pro featureHuawei Mate 20 X takes Pro out a new gaming doorHuawei Mate 20 Pro pricing and release details Don’t be surprised if you haven’t heard of NM Card as a new technology, though: it’s something Huawei invented itself. Whereas microSD is the handiwork of the SD Card Association, or SDA, which licenses the card tech to third-party manufacturers and device-makers, NM Card is something Huawei came up with on its own. That, the company argues, is in the best interests of modern smartphone designs. microSD has been around for fifteen years, Huawei points out; it may be the smallest of the mainstream memory card options today, but it’s still oversized compared to how other phone components have shrunk down. Its NM Card – or “Nano Memory Card” – tech is 45-percent smaller. Indeed it’s the same size and shape as a nano SIM, which opens up some new options for handsets like the Mate 20 Pro. Huawei can offer users the option of slotting in a single SIM and an NM Card to expand the phone’s onboard storage, or alternatively putting in two SIM cards to have two different lines active. It’s clever, but it’s hardly the first time we’ve seen such an approach. Several smartphones have supported either dual SIM cards or a single SIM and a microSD card. The downside, Huawei would argue, is that it requires a larger tray to fit the bigger memory chip. That has a knock-in impact on how large the phone will be. In contrast, Huawei’s pitch is that you can have a more compact solution, but just as long as you’re willing to sign up to a proprietary standard. That may well be a compromise too far for many. We’ve seen other attempts to popularize non-standard memory cards, and they’ve all quietly disappeared – or remained so deeply niche as to be effectively uncompetitive. Huawei is playing the details for NM Cards close to its chest, too. Although it showed off a 256 GB card on-stage at the launch of the Mate 20 series today, with a 90 MB/s data transfer rate, it hasn’t said what capacities will be offered. Huawei’s product page for the Mate 20 Pro suggests 256 GB will be the largest size the phone can handle. In contrast, we saw 512 GB microSD cards available earlier this year, and the standard itself can handle up to 2 TB cards. So far there’s no word from Huawei as to whether 256 GB is a technological limit or just the current ceiling for its cards. More importantly, Huawei also hasn’t confirmed just how much the cards will cost you. If there’s a significant premium – or, indeed, any premium at all – over the comparable size of microSD, that may prove a serious turn-off to users. That’s doubly the case when you consider that Huawei hasn’t said if it’ll have adapters to use NM Cards in microSD card slots, or indeed if the two technologies are even compatible. MORE Huawei Mate 20 Pro hands-onExpandable storage is a shrinking benefit of the Android ecosystem, with fewer and fewer phones offering the ability to add more capacity later on in the handset’s life. Certainly, there are times when more onboard storage is preferable to cloud storage, and typically a microSD is cheaper, gigabyte for gigabyte, than paying a phone-maker upfront for a larger-capacity device. All the same, buying into a new standard – which, as far as we know, will be exclusive to Huawei devices – seems a step in the wrong direction. Huawei may well be right that it’s time for microSD to get a refresh – and to slim down – but creating its own proprietary replacement is a tough chip to swallow. At first glance there’s a whole lot to like about Huawei’s new Mate 20 series, but the company’s attempt to shake up the memory card market could end up more frustrating than anything else. The Mate 20 Pro and Mate 20 will be the first of Huawei’s phones to use NM Card storage, a new type of memory card intended to replace microSD. read more

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Goodyear unveils spherical concept tires for autonomous cars

first_imgGoodyear showed off the Eagle-360 concept in the video below, where you can see how they’d look on a futuristic self-driving car designed to accommodate them. Each tire is a perfect sphere that allows the car to move in any direction, making it easier to park in tight spaces (rolling horizontally into curb-side parking rather than having to back into it, for example). Goodyear also says the spherical shape would improve passenger safety by enabling more movement options.In addition to having a high degree of mobility, the Eagle-360 tires also feature integrated sensors that impart data about weather and road conditions to the car’s control system and other cars that are driving close by. These sensors let the car adjust the tires’ positions to ensure the tread wears evenly over the entire surface, prolonging how long it lasts. As shown in the video above, the tires also feature biomimicry, that is, they are designed in such a way to mimic an element of nature. In this case, Goodyear drew inspiration from brain coral, using a special material in the treads that stiffens if the road is dry and softens when the road is wet, tweaking the performance to the road conditions. Finally, and for that extra dose of cool-factor, Goodyear envisions the tires being connected using magnetic levitation, resulting in a butter-smooth ride.More conservative but no less interesting is the Goodyear IntelliGrip concept tires, which are likewise designed with autonomous vehicles in mind. They’re not spherical, but they are packed with smart technology and a special tread, allowing them to sense both weather and road conditions. There’s also active-wear technology for monitoring the state of the tire and the vehicle itself. Goodyear’s own algorithms would keep tabs on tire inflation and temperature, among other things.Slippery and rain-covered roads would also be dealt with using adaption technology, with the tire itself being able to shorten the stopping distance, improve stability and cornering, and help support the car’s crash avoidance system. Says Goodyear, it is presently working with some car makers to tweak its own technology to better suit their needs; the company specifically mentions things like better connectivity with a car’s Suspension Control Systems, ESC Systems, and Brake Control Systems.Of course, these are just concept tires at this time; they are not in production, and Goodyear hasn’t stated whether it may bring either to the market in the future.SOURCE: Goodyear Story TimelineGoodyear’s carbon fibre car tires.Goodyear Bursts Through Raw Material Costs by Selling Higher End TiresGoodyear to test self-inflating tires with truck fleetsGoodyear concept tire helps power electric carscenter_img Goodyear has taken the wraps off two new concept tires designed specifically for autonomous vehicles. The most interesting of the two is the Eagle-360, a spherical concept tire that can move in any direction using, in part, a magnetic levitation system. As exciting as the Eagle-360 is, it isn’t reasonable for the upcoming fleet of self-driving cars. To meet present-day needs, Goodyear has also introduced its new IntelliGrip concept tires.last_img read more

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2019 Shelby GT squeezes 700 horsepower from Mustang V8

first_imgNot to be confused with the Mustang Shelby GT350 and GT350R that Ford Performance makes, the Shelby GT is the handiwork of the separate Shelby American tuning company. This 2019 car follows in the tread marks of the first generation 2007 Shelby GT, a performance-tuned version of the Mustang that was sold alongside Ford’s own cars in the automaker’s dealerships. For 2019, the core recipe is the same. Shelby starts with a Mustang GT, then coaxes out an estimated 480 horsepower from the 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine. Like the regular car, you’ll be able to have it in either 6-speed manual, or 10-speed automatic, form, along with as a fastback coupe or a convertible. Shelby says the horsepower increase over the regular Mustang GT’s 460 hp are primarily down to the new exhaust system, supplied by Borla. The company then worked with Ford Performance on a tweaked suspension system, while the car gets custom bodywork along with new 20-inch wheels. It’ll be offered in any factory paint color that Ford itself supports for the Mustang.AdChoices广告Inside, there’ll be tweaks to the cabin along with Shelby badging. Cars will get a Shelby serial number, and be included in the official Shelby Registry. A Shelby GT-H – or “Heritage” – version will be offered in either black or white with gold stripes and optional gold wheels, too, as a nod to the 2006 and 2007 Shelby GT-H rental cars. Options, meanwhile, will include a Shelby Premium Package, with a new front fascia assembly and Ford Performance front struts and rear shocks. There’ll also be a Shelby Heavy Duty Package with an extreme radiator, coolant tank, wheels studs, and performance half-shafts. A short-throw shifter and leather interior will also be available.More exciting still, though, are Shelby American’s plans to squeeze even more out of the V8. That will see the company strap on a Ford Performance supercharger, delivering an estimated 700+ horsepower. It won’t be available from launch, though, as it has to complete emissions certification first. Pricing will kick off at $61,345 for the 2019 Shelby GT fastback with a manual transmission and 3yr/36,000 mile warranty. The Heritage and Premium cars will start from $66,345. Story TimelineThe 2019 Mustang Shelby GT350 just went extra-hardcore2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt first drive: Back to its rootsSteeda Steve McQueen Edition Bullitt Mustang offers up to 775hp If the Ford Mustang GT isn’t quite powerful enough for you, and the dealer mark-ups on the Mustang Bullitt too rich for your blood, leave it to Shelby American to make the performance muscle-car to fill that gap. Details have started spilling on the 2019 Shelby GT, the latest iteration of the tuned-up, restyled pony car. last_img read more

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Chrome just made online shopping much easier What you need to know

first_imgGoogle announced today that it will make it easier to access your payment information within Chrome regardless of the device you’re using. Now, as long as you’re logged in on Chrome, you’ll see the option to choose from saved payment information when you’re filling out a checkout form. The hope is that this makes checkout faster and more convenient for Chrome users. If you count yourself among that group of Chrome users, you’ve probably already encountered functionality similar to this. The big difference between this and the way things are now is that the new method Google is rolling out today doesn’t require Chrome Sync to be turned on – as long as you’re logged into your Google account and purchasing something from a place that supports Google Pay, you’ll see the option to pull up saved credit and debit cards when checking out.As always, Google will still ask you to confirm your card’s CVC when you pull up stored payment information, and you’ll also have the option of adding a new payment method to your account, which will prompt Google to send you a confirmation email. You can manage your saved cards by going into your Google account settings, selecting “Payments & Subscriptions,” then selecting “Payment Methods.”Google says that this new feature doesn’t turn on Chrome Sync when you use it. You also have the option of saving payment methods locally by pulling up Chrome Settings, followed by “Payment Methods,” then “Add.” That isn’t quite as elegant as simply adding a new card at checkout, but if you only want your payment information saved to a single device, that’s how you accomplish it. AdChoices广告So, while Google is trying to make it easier to save and pull up payment information across devices, it’s also giving you the ability to manage where that information is saved (if it is at all) and how it can be accessed. Google says that this feature is rolling out today, so Chrome users should start seeing it soon. Story TimelineGoogle Chrome extension lets users report suspicious sitesChrome OS will show Android cloud storage apps in Files appChrome OS to get Bluetooth battery indicator, virtual desktop keyboard shortcutslast_img read more

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2020 Audi TT 20th Anniversary Edition gets all dressed up to celebrate

first_imgAudi has unveiled the unique TT 20th Anniversary Edition that comes with some unique elements in a limited edition model. The special edition car will come in two colors, Aviator Gray pearl effect or Nimbus Gray metallic; the latter color is a US market exclusive. All 20th-anniversary models have the same Moccasin Brown Fine Nappa leather with yellow contrast stitching. The car also gets high-gloss black exterior trim elements and unique 19-inch 5-arm-design gunmetal wheels with summer tires. The exhaust system is a trumpet-style stainless steel system unique to the model. Brake lights use OLEDs rather than conventional LEDs, OLEDs are currently exclusive to the TT RS.The front fenders of the limited edition model get “20 Years of TT” badges. The special leather interior has the “baseball” stitching found in the original TT. Interior badges will adorn the car that has the vehicle’s unique production number along with a TT 20 Years icon.Power will be for the standard 2.0L turbo four with 228 horsepower and standard 7-speed S Tronic dual-clutch transmission. Audi says the car can hit 60mph from a standstill in 5.2-seconds in coupe form and 5.5-seconds in roadster form. The anniversary models come with lots of tech inside. Buyers get standard Audi phone box with wireless charging and signal booster. The Technology group is standard on all versions, including the Audi virtual cockpit, navigation, and lots more. The Audi TT 20th Anniversary Edition coupe is $52,900 with the roadster selling for $56,800; both are on sale now.last_img read more

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The last two affordable station wagons in America are about to retire

first_imgThe Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen and Golf Alltrack (pictured) will soon have more in common with the born-again Beetle than the emblem on their nose. The German automaker confirmed both nameplates will retire at the end of 2019, and it’s not currently planning on replacing them on the American market.The Sportwagen (formerly a Jetta, now a Golf) was once one of Volkswagen’s hippest and most popular models, but sales dipped as buyers pivoted toward crossovers and SUVs. Volkswagen explained crossovers and SUVs defend a 47-percent share of the American market so far in 2019, and they represent over 50 percent of its sales. The ongoing shift has dented the popularity of every body style, including the traditional sedan, but wagons took the biggest hit.We knew the two wagons would retire soon, because the seventh-generation Golf they’re based on is at the end of its life cycle. SUV dominance isn’t limited to the United States, and Volkswagen might not even develop a station wagon variant of the eighth-generation Golf for Europe, the body style’s last bastion. British magazine Autocar learned the long-roof could be dropped as the firm moves to simplify the Golf lineup. Volkswagen hasn’t commented on the report, so we need to wait until the eighth-generation Golf makes its debut later in 2019 to find out more.While the Sportwagen and the Alltrack didn’t represent a huge chunk of Volkswagen’s American sales, they’ll leave a gap that the company plans to fill by releasing — you guessed it — additional crossovers and SUVs over the coming years. It will introduce a shorter, five-seater variant of the Atlas by the end of 2019, an electric model previewed by the ID Crozz concept in 2020, and a sub-Tiguan soft-roader in 2021.In the meantime, American motorists determined to resist the siren song of the crossover and hunting for a great station wagon still have a handful of options to choose from, though all of them are more expensive than the outgoing Volkswagens. The Subaru Outback is entering the 2020 model year after receiving a full redesign that adds a sharper look, a new platform, and more tech. The Buick Regal TourX stands out as the only American station wagon sold in the United States. Both are relatively rugged models with a crossover-esque design. Buyers who want a regular wagon will need to stretch their budget to reach the Volvo V60. Editors’ Recommendations Crisp and connected, the Volkswagen Golf will get a digital reboot in 2020 Volkswagen is launching a full range of EVs, but it doesn’t want to be Tesla For Volkswagen, the electric ID.3 is more than a new car. It’s a new chapter Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 Golf Edition review This tuned Volkswagen Golf GTI sports a hologram-controlled audio systemlast_img read more

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Viewpoints Romneys Mandate Problem Rage At Roberts Should Feds Take Over Medicaid

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. The New York Times: Mr. Romney Changes His Mind, AgainMassachusetts residents who file a state tax return have to provide proof that they have health insurance. If they can afford insurance but don’t have it, they must “pay a penalty through their tax returns,” according to the state Department of Revenue’s Web site. This is all thanks to former Gov. Mitt Romney, who set up the system — the best of its kind in the country — and is now trying to pretend he doesn’t remember how it works (7/5).The New York Times Taking Note blog: Flip Flopping AwayLast week, the Romney campaign didn’t want to call the fine a “tax,” probably because Mr. Romney himself imposed such a penalty as part of the health care reform he got enacted in Massachusetts. (That reform, of course, is the template for President Obama’s program.) That caused a lot of bother among what’s left of the Republicans to his right. So on Wednesday, Mr. Romney celebrated the nation’s independence by abandoning his (Andrew Rosenthal, 7/5).The Washington Post: Mitt Romney’s Problem On The Health-Care Mandate QuestionRomney has tried to talk his way past his health-care dilemma for more than a year. Faced with the choice between calling his support for an Obama-like health-care plan in Massachusetts a mistake or sticking with it while trying to draw distinctions between the two, Romney chose the latter. Labeling it a mistake would have opened him up to a new charge of flip-flopping for political convenience. But neither course was ideal (Dan Balz, 7/5). Chicago Tribune: Mr. Romney, Own ItMr. Romney, just own it. You signed a health care mandate. It looks very much like Obamacare on a state scale. The state and federal laws are built on the same principles. They share many benefits and requirements. Please stop trying to talk your way around that. … Romney took a political risk to reach a deal with Democrats in Massachusetts to extend health care to thousands of uninsured people. He can’t dance around that. He would sound a lot more believable if he spoke about the future of health care from experience. Instead, he’s all about political advantage, and that has him twisting (7/5).Baltimore Sun: Romney Foolishly Flip-Flopped On Health MandateRemember in March, when former senator Rick Santorum got a lot of grief for saying that Mitt Romney was the “worst Republican” in the country to challenge President Barack Obama on health care reform? Well, turns out he was right. That was evident Wednesday when former governor Romney decided he couldn’t leave well enough alone and, in a CBS television interview, declared Mr. Obama’s individual health care insurance mandate was a tax. That directly contradicted what his campaign had been saying on the subject for two days and left the Republican in the uncomfortable position of having to explain why his own version of health care reform in Massachusetts, which also carried a mandate and a similar penalty, was somehow not a tax (7/5).Baltimore Sun: Romney Courts ConfusionPoor Mitt Romney. Even when he is handed the football with a clear path to the goal line, he seems almost unable not to fumble it along the way. In his majority opinion ruling the Affordable Care Act constitutional, Supreme Court Justice John G. Roberts Jr. surprisingly said the law’s mandate was a tax and therefore within Congress’ revenue-raising power. In doing so, he presented Mr. Romney a prime argument for accusing President Barack Obama of heaping more billions of dollars in taxes on the middle class. But the likely Republican nominee, instead of instantly seizing the decision to make that case against Mr. Obama, contradicted one of his own political aides who tried to do so. A Romney campaign release contended that mandating the citizenry to shell out to the feds in lieu of buying health insurance was not a tax, just “an unconstitutional penalty” (Jules Witcover, 7/6).The Des Moines Register: A Tax Or Not A Tax. That Is The QuestionWe are now in summer silly season for politics. Citizens are jumping into lakes and pools and staying cool in basement rec rooms, door stoops, and under shade trees in parks and back yards. Still the political classes keep churning away. This week we found out that “Romney Now Says Health Mandate by Obama Is a Tax” according to JEREMY W. PETERS of the New York Times. “Days after his spokesman [his top aide Eric Fehrnstrom] said the requirement that people have insurance was not a tax, [he said Romney believed it’s is “an unconstitutional penalty” instead] Mitt Romney said it was [a tax], aligning himself with the conservative voices in his party” (Steffen Schmidt, 7/6).The Denver Post: Editorial: On Health Care, Tax Vs. Penalty Is The Wrong DebateMitt Romney — or at least his campaign — had it right the first time. Just because the Supreme Court has said the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate to buy health insurance is a tax doesn’t mean he should adopt the thesis as a campaign theme. Before last week’s court ruling, Romney didn’t believe the mandate was a tax. Why pretend he believes it now? (7/5)Boston Globe: For Mitt Romney, Avoiding Risk Means Obscuring His Own PositionsMitt Romney responded to the Supreme Court’s upholding the health care law last Thursday with a short, blunt declaration: “What the court did not do on its last day in session, I will do on my first day,” he said. “I will act to repeal Obamacare.” Like many other Republicans, Romney has said he wants to “repeal and replace” the health care law. But however much he’s pressed, he offers few specifics about what he would replace it with. On Thursday, he skipped over the issue altogether. This has become a familiar pattern: a ringing affirmation of some major policy difference with President Obama, followed by a lot of vagueness about what he would do instead (Joshua Gree, 7/6).Chicago Sun-Times: Rage At Roberts Won’t End SoonAdmittedly, it was not standard fare for a Fourth of July party, but time and again the conversation under a sweltering sun drifted back to the U.S. Supreme Court’s health care ruling. This being a mostly conservative crowd, much perplexity and dissatisfaction were expressed about Chief Justice John Roberts finding a way to save the Affordable Care Act from a constitutional challenge. It was another bit of evidence that the firestorm ignited by the controversial ruling won’t go away, likely making ObamaCare a major issue, albeit far behind the economy, for the fall election (Steve Huntley, 7/5). Kansas City Star: Ruling Put Constitution Before Political IdeologyConservatives’ fury over Chief Justice John Roberts’ surprising ruling in support of President Barack Obama’s health care law has crystallized into a shocking accusation. He changed his mind. How dare he? Only a week after the court announced its long-awaited decision on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, a scenario first based on speculation has been confirmed by “sources” and emerged as a meme (Barbara Shelley, 7/5).Philadelphia Inquirer: How The Supreme Court’s Health Care Decision Affects PharmaThe Supreme Court’s decision last week to let the Affordable Care Act (ACA) stand will not appreciably affect the escalation of costs or the other fundamental dynamics of health care. While the decision clearly provides fodder for politicians and other blowhards, its effect on most of health care’s business sectors appears unlikely to alter the course of events. … The manufacturing sectors such as pharma and devices will sustain both gains and losses, but nothing appears likely to alter industry fundamentals (Dr. Daniel R. Hoffman, 7/5).The Fiscal Times:  Small Businesses:  Big Losers In Obamacare DecisionWhy are small businesses so opposed to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act? Sam Graves, chairman of the House Committee on Small Business, who held hearings on the matter, recently sent a letter to President Obama highlighting companies’ concerns. He quoted one restaurant owner who said, “The real irony here is that in the name of expanding health care coverage, Congress and the administration are making it more difficult for workers to enter and eventually be promoted in the workforce at a time when we need job growth” (Liz Peek, 7/6).The Fiscal Times:  Should The Federal Government Take Over Medicaid?With over a dozen conservative states leaning against expanding Medicaid to cover poor workers without health insurance, perhaps it is time to resuscitate an idea embraced by President Ronald Reagan. Let the federal government take over Medicaid lock, stock and barrel. In 1982 the president who ushered in the modern conservative era offered to assume federal responsibility for the program that now consumes over 22 percent of state government budgets in exchange for states taking over welfare. His offer built on a series of recommendations going back to 1969 by the U.S. Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, which called for a federal takeover of all public assistance programs (Merrill Goozner, 7/6).The New York Times: When It’s the Nurse Who Needs Looking AfterTrusted more than almost any other professional, nurses exert a wide-ranging influence on how health care is delivered and defined. But nurses’ work is not easy, particularly in the hospital setting, where they must deal with intense intellectual and significant physical demands over three or more grueling 12-hour shifts each week. Not surprisingly, nursing ranks among the worst occupations in terms of work-related injuries, and studies have shown that in a given year, nearly half of all nurses will have struggled with lower back pain (Dr. Pauline W. Chen, 7/5).The Arizona Republic:  Arizona Has Hard Choice To MakeNow that the U.S. Supreme Court has made it voluntary, should Arizona participate in “Obamacare’s” Medicaid expansion to 133 percent of the federal poverty level?  Well, as the movie title puts it, it’s complicated.  In the first place, Arizona is in an awkward position to consider the question. The state is already in violation of an initiative approved by voters to cover everyone up to 100 percent of the poverty level. And it’s broke (Robert Robb, 7/6).Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Cuts Hurt Care For DisabledThese aren’t people needing nursing homes or hospitals. They are individuals who simply can’t live on their own, who need assistance at various levels to live normal lives. … But cutting funding for these people will not make them more independent. It will only increase risks (Thomas Zachek, 7/5). Viewpoints: Romney’s Mandate Problem; Rage At Roberts; Should Feds Take Over Medicaid?last_img read more

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Medicare Reverses Course And Opts Not To Revamp Dialysis Payments

first_imgFederal officials announce that they will reduce what the program pays by less than 1 percent over the next two years.The Wall Street Journal: Medicare To Cut Dialysis Payments Much Less Than ExpectedThe Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said it would reduce payments to kidney dialysis providers by less than 1% over the next two years in a reversal of the much-larger cuts it had proposed this summer (Walker, 11/22).Reuters: U.S. Medicare Program Leaves 2014 Dialysis Payments UnchangedMedicare, the U.S. government healthcare program for elderly and disabled people, will leave its overall reimbursement rates for kidney dialysis treatment unchanged for next year, and said it will take three to four years to implement a mandated adjustment to its base rates (Beasley, 11/22).Meanwhile, in another health issue often confronting seniors –The Wall Street Journal: New Strategies For Long-Term CareAs long-term-care insurance becomes more expensive and harder to get, what are families who want it left to do? Fewer carriers are offering the coverage, which helps pay for future nursing-home, assisted-living and home care. Those that still do are raising premiums on new and longtime policyholders (Greene, 11/22). Medicare Reverses Course And Opts Not To Revamp Dialysis Payments This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

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State Highlights Home Care Workers Pay And Medicaid Budgets Calif Mental Health

first_imgState Highlights: Home Care Workers’ Pay And Medicaid Budgets; Calif. Mental Health Grants; NYU ER Reopens This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A selection of health policy stories from California, New York, Iowa, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Arizona.Stateline: States Confront “New Mindset” On Home Care Workers’ WagesA new rule from the Obama administration designed to provide better pay and working conditions to 2 million home care workers is forcing many states to rethink how they look at Medicaid payments and may result in higher Medicaid costs. Starting Jan. 1, home care workers in 29 states will, for the first time, be eligible for the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour and overtime pay, under a new regulation from the U.S. Department of Labor. These workers go to homes of the elderly and the disabled to help with cooking, bathing and other daily tasks, and are paid by the clients or through Medicaid (Prah, 4/25).Los Angeles Times: State To Provide $75 Million In Mental Health GrantsState Treasurer Bill Lockyer announced the approval Thursday of $75.3 million in grants that aim to stabilize residents with severe mental illness before they land in jail or suffer multiple hospitalizations. The 20 grants will go to 28 counties for new or expanded services. They will add 827 residential mental health beds and crisis “stabilization” beds, and pay for more than three dozen vehicles and five dozen staff members for mobile support teams, which often accompany local law enforcement to defuse tense situations and direct those in need to care (Romney, 4/24).The New York Times: NYU Langone Reopens Emergency Room That Was Closed by Hurricane SandyA striking sight appeared earlier this week outside the emergency room of NYU Langone Medical Center: an ambulance. Then another. And then many more. The emergency chairman, Dr. Lewis Goldfrank, watched a procession of stretchers throughout the day as if he was welcoming long-lost friends. Other doctors came around so they could witness it for themselves. The occasion was so moving that Dr. Steven Hofstetter, a surgeon, felt that one Yiddish expression for feeling pride was not enough. So he used two. “We just came down to, as they say, kvell nachus,” (Hartocollis, 4/24). The Des Moines Register: Iowa Senate Approves Medical Cannabis Oil BillThe Iowa Senate voted Thursday to decriminalize medical cannabis oil for the treatment of epilepsy, responding to emotional pleas of Iowa parents with children stricken by seizures. Senate File 2360 was approved 36-12 after a lengthy debate that included several Republican lawmakers who warned that legalizing any form of marijuana would send the wrong message to young people in jeopardy of abusing drugs (Peroski and Noble, 4/25).The Boston Globe: Boston To Shutter Drug Treatment FacilityMore than 400 opiate addicts in Boston who receive daily doses of methadone from a public clinic on Frontage Road will be steered to a for-profit facility by summer, health officials said. In a 6-to-1 vote last week, Boston’s Board of Health decided to end more than 40 years of city-run methadone treatment, which uses the narcotic to wean addicts from heroin and other opiates. The addiction services will now be handled by Community Substance Abuse Centers as the state confronts a startling rise in heroin overdoses and deaths (MacQuarrie, 4/25).The CT Mirror: How Different Are For-Profit And Nonprofit Hospitals?One of the major issues legislators are trying to tackle this session is the ability of nonprofit hospitals to convert to for-profits. It’s a complex and highly charged issue. Some people fear that without the ability to become for-profit, small community hospitals could struggle to survive. Others say allowing hospitals to become for-profit could hurt workers and communities unless protections are built into law (Becker, 4/25). The Arizona Republic: Phoenix VA Health-Care Probes Expected To WidenU.S. House members kept the spotlight on the Phoenix VA Health Care System Thursday during hearings on veterans’ access to mental-health care, vowing to further probe allegations that up to 40 vets died while waiting for medical appointments. The field hearing Thursday on southern Arizona veterans’ experiences came as Arizona’s Senate delegation announced that U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, will hold a hearing on allegations of VA patient neglect in Phoenix after the VA Inspector General completes an independent investigation. Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo., chairman of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, told The Arizona Republic Thursday that his staff would continue examining allegations of misconduct at the Phoenix facility as part of an ongoing inquiry into VA hospitals nationwide (Harris, 4/24).The Arizona Republic: Health Care Nightmares Day 5: Injured Good Samaritan Billed $165,000 By AetnaAfter a week of intense treatment, (Cliff) Faraci was discharged from the hospital. But he hadn’t been home two full days when he received a letter from his insurance company informing him that he wasn’t covered for the hospital stay. Aetna claimed Faraci’s injuries were not sufficient to warrant a weeklong stay in the hospital’s burn unit, which was deemed an out-of-network facility. Maricopa County Medical Center had billed him about $165,000. He filed an appeal with Aetna. It was denied in August. Almost overnight, the freeway Good Samaritan had become a victim of a health-care nightmare (Anigen, 4/24).last_img read more

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Viewpoints Zika Virus Raises Questions About Pandemic Readiness Cheers And Jeers For

first_imgViewpoints: Zika Virus Raises Questions About Pandemic Readiness; Cheers And Jeers For Obamacare A selection of opinions on health care from around the country. The New York Times: Don’t Blame Silicon Valley For Theranos Margins on hospital Medicare business are expected to deteriorate this year, bottoming out at a negative 9% on average, according to a report by the commission that advises Congress on Medicare payments. But the good news is that hospitals are making healthy profits and surpluses overall on the strength of productivity gains, cost-cutting and their commercial business, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission said in a little-reported study in March. (Dave Barkhotz, 4/26) The $150 billion federal disability program is a mess. It almost went broke (Congress had to give it an emergency infusion). It discourages employment and can be gamed. But woe to the office-seeker who tries to fix it. (Paula Dwyer, 4/26) The Arizona Republic: Quit Stalling And Pass KidsCare National Review: Obamacare’s Taxpayer-Subsidized Failure You knew this was coming. The governor promised tax cuts so there were going to be some form of tax cuts, no matter what. Perhaps because somewhere down the line when he is running for something else he’ll be able to say he cut taxes. (E.J. Montini, 4/26) The Arizona Republic: Tax Cuts For Business; No Health Care For Poor Kids – #Priorities? Des Moines Register: Repeal Obamacare And Replace With … Nothing? Bloomberg: Trump Wins Big In States With High Disability Rates Imagine a veterans’ hospital with no waiting list to see a doctor. One where veterans can book their appointments online 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Where the red carpet is rolled out for our heroes to receive world-class care for their world-class service the very next day — before it’s too late. And where the men and women who accepted the call of duty can choose to continue seeing the doctor they’ve seen their entire lives. (Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, 4/26) Three years ago, Walgreens (b. 1901) arrived in Silicon Valley for the same reason many old economy companies do: to hurry and join the digital vanguard before it was left behind. Walgreens quickly made a deal with Theranos (b. 2004), the medical diagnostics company and media darling that promised a revolutionary approach to blood tests. (Randall Stross, 4/27) In the aftermath of the anthrax attacks of 2001, the Ebola outbreak of 2014 and now Zika, it is no longer a question of if but when the next biosecurity threat will occur. In fact, experts believe a pandemic, not nuclear terrorism or climate change, is most likely to cause 10 million or more deaths in a single event. (Tom Daschle and Ron Klain, 4/26) KidsCare is not a trap or a trick or part of some sinister federal strategy to undermine Arizona’s independence. It is a trip to the doctor for a sick child. It is a well-baby check for an infant. It is ongoing care for a chronic childhood ailment, like asthma. (4/26) STAT: I Told My Story About Racism In Medical School. Here’S What Readers Taught Me. Modern Healthcare: Hospitals Prosper On Commercial Payers As Medicare Margins Sink To -9% I’m not always the best spokeswoman for autism. I toggle between wanting people to understand our daughter and wanting to behave like a normal family running errands on a Saturday. Some days I don’t feel like having to explain to strangers in line at the grocery store that she doesn’t speak, or having to identify myself at a school board meeting as a parent of a special-needs child. (Katherine Osnos Sanford, 4/26) center_img The Washington Post: The Paradox At The Heart Of Our Marijuana Laws — And How To Fix It I remember driving to the hospital with my mother when I was 6 or 7. We pulled up to the physician parking lot, but the attendant refused to open the gate, telling my mother the lot was for physicians only. “I am a physician,” she said, “and I work here.” (Jennifer Adaeze Anyaegbunaum, 4/27) Here’s some bad news for the insurance industry: Unexpectedly generous corporate subsidies didn’t save companies selling Obamacare policies from bleeding red ink. The worse news: Those subsidies are set to expire in 2017, meaning that insurers will have to make ends meet without billions in handouts. (Doug Badger, 4/26) Recent developments have once again prompted some to declare that the insurance marketplaces developed as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are unsustainable and collapsing. And once again, these reports are overstated. What has prompted this latest round of recriminations is the report that UnitedHealthcare, the nation’s largest health insurance company, will be pulling out of the ACA’s marketplaces except in a “handful of states” in 2017. The company cites financial losses in its plans sold to individuals as the impetus for its withdrawal. The insurer is still quite profitable overall, earning $3 billion in operating profits in the first quarter of 2016. (Larry Levitt, 4/26) The Washington Post: Want To Know What It’s Really Like To Have A Child With Autism? Forbes: Capping The Tax Exclusion Will Not Destroy Employer Health Insurance As Congress and the Drug Enforcement Administration weigh whether marijuana should be rescheduled, public faith in the drug classification system continues to erode. Debate rages between those who emphasize the strangeness of marijuana being on the highly restrictive Schedule I alongside far more harmful drugs like heroin, and those who emphasize how strange it would be to put crude plant matter on a less restrictive schedule alongside well-specified FDA-approved medications. (Keith Humphreys, 4/26) USA Today: We’re Not Ready For Next Zika Virus If we hope to move to an efficient healthcare system that is fair to everyone, Congress will have to take on the largest subsidy in the tax code. Despite strong opposition from unions and employers, it is possible to reform the tax break for employment-based health insurance without destroying that market. (Joseph Antos, 4/26) It has been more than six years since the Affordable Care Act became law. During that time, Republicans in the U.S. House have voted dozens of times to repeal, defund or dismantle it. Never have they voted on a bill to replace the health reform law. Now we know why: They’re still working on coming up with a plan. (4/26) news@JAMA: JAMA Forum: Reports Of Obamacare’S Demise Are Greatly Exaggerated Lexington Herald Leader: Insurers Must Cover Treatment For Eating Disorders The Washington Post: House GOP Conference Chair: Wait Time Is Up For VA Fix Up to 30 million Americans are suffering from eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating, according to the National Eating Disorder Association. Kentucky is 25th in the nation, with approximately 149,000 individuals afflicted with such devastating disorders. For those seeking treatment, there are zero inpatient facilities and there is only one outpatient therapy program in this state. (Kristy Klueh, 4/26) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

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Peugeot Shows New PlugIn Hybrids 3008 508 508 SW

PLUG-IN HYBRID TECHNOLOGYPEUGEOT would like to present its PLUG-IN HYBRID range as the first piece of tangible proof of a serene and ever more pleasant future for our customers. A HYBRID and HYBRID4 rechargeable offer linked to a petrol engine.A set of advanced technologies is rolled out which easily and fully transparently fit together for the user.Petrol engineThe 1.6L PureTech engine has been adapted, including with the addition of a starter-alternator or a specific cooling face. It reaches 180hp on HYBRID and 225hp on HYBRID4.New electrified automatic gearbox The PureTech engine is combined with the new e-EAT8 8-speed automatic transmission (Electric Efficient Automatic Transmission – 8 speeds), specific to PEUGEOT PLUG-IN HYBRID engines.An electric motor is linked to the box and reaches 110hp/80kW on the front suspension.For optimal and imperceptible transitions between electrical and thermal, the torque converter of the thermal versions gives way to a wet multiple-disc clutch. All these modifications offer a torque increase of 60Nm, for more reactivity.An electrified rear suspension On the HYBRID4 versions, the multi-link rear suspension is equipped with an inverter, a 110hp/80kW electric motor and a gearbox for 4-wheel drive. Its integration has been achieved without impact on usability.Lithium-ion batteryThe high voltage battery is Lithium-ion (300V) and is located under the 2nd row seats on both HYBRID and HYBRID4 versions.The battery has a capacity of between 11,8KWh (HYBRID) and 13,2 KWh (HYBRID4), at the best level of the market. This capability ensures 100% electric driving up to 50 kilometres WLTP(2) (60 kilometres NEDC(1)).To get the most out of the operating silence, the default mode will be the Zero Emission mode, when the battery charge status allows it. The electric movements can reach 135km/h before the heat engine takes over.Efficient features for renewed enjoymentNew Brake featureThe driver can choose to activate a new Brake feature that allows the vehicle to decelerate without pressing the brake pedal. As an engine brake, it also makes it possible to recharge the battery, when going downhill for example. In Drive mode, pushing the Shift and Park by wire automatic gearbox control to the rear is enough to engage the Brake mode. A second push disables it.New electronically-controlled braking systemWith a view to increasing driver autonomy in 100% electric, the high energy efficiency i-Booster braking system recovers the energy during a braking or a deceleration when the foot is lifted off (energy that usually dissipates on the thermal versions). The i-booster incorporates an electric pump to replace the vacuum pump of the thermal versions.New e-SAVE feature The pleasure of riding in electric whenever you want is possible with the e-SAVE function. The e-SAVE allows the driver to anticipate their movement by reserving electric autonomy (10kms, 20kms or the whole battery). This function is easily accessible from the dedicated e-SAVE menu on the touch screen. Once set up, the function is displayed on the handset with the autonomy reserved in kilometres. You just need to select the Zero Emission mode on the driving mode selector to activate the 100% electric driving when you need it.Easily and quickly charge your batteryMaximum charge is reached:in 7 hours with a standard plug (3,3 kW, 8A charger)in 4 hours with a reinforced Green’up® type socket (3.3 kW 14A charger in 4 hours)and even in less than 1h45 when using a Wallbox (6.6 kW 32A charger available as an option).Guides lamps surround the charging socket so you can easily and quickly check the battery charge. Once the plug is connected, colours will indicate the progress of the battery charge.Discreetly installed, the charging hatch is located on the rear left wing of the vehicle (symmetric to the fuel hatch). The charging system fits easily into specific storage under the boot floor.A driving experience enriched with new sensationsWith its technological heritage, PEUGEOT offers its customers the same experience of intense and instinctive driving whatever the engine.The new PEUGEOT PLUG-IN HYBRID engines provide a new driving experience. An experience that provides a range of new sensations with unparalleled brilliance including through new driving modes.Each driving mode is exclusive and provides different experiences:silence in ZERO EMISSION mode, 100% electric!exhilarating performance in SPORT mode that harnesses all energies,versatility of the HYBRID mode,improved motor function in 4WD mode (PEUGEOT 3008 HYBRID4)COMFORT mode that couples the HYBRID mode and the comfort of the electronically-controlled suspension (new PEUGEOT 508 HYBRID)All these modes offer a 100% electric ride, depending on the battery charge level.If the technological content of the HYBRID and HYBRID4 engines can seem dense, the promise of the ensuing driving experience is clear. Ergonomics and driving are easy and intuitive.An electrifying drive with the PEUGEOT i-Cockpit®As a key brander for Lion productions, the PEUGEOT i-Cockpit® provides a stimulating and intuitive driving experience in everyday life. The touch screen and the digital handset have been adapted in order to complement the driving experience of PEUGEOT PLUG-IN HYBRID engines.Digital handsetThe hybrid-specific PEUGEOT i-Cockpit® incorporates the driving information available in the driver’s field of vision (driving mode, electric gauge level and available electrical distance, etc.). It is fully configurable and customisable.A power metre, located on the right side of the digital handset, replaces the rev counter. It consists of 3 easily identifiable areas:The ECO area corresponds to an energy-optimising driving experience,The POWER area is a more dynamic driving experience, providing dynamic performance.The CHARGE area indicates the phases of energy recovery to the driver, allowing the battery to be charged, mainly when the foot is off.Two gauges are arranged on either side of the handset: one for the fuel, the other for the power. The available range, expressed in km, is also indicated below each gauge.The active driving mode is permanently displayed in the lower part of the handset, so that you can adapt it if necessary quickly and without hesitation.At everytime when recharging, the handset allows to know the recovered electric autonomy (in kilometres), the recovered rate of battery charge (in percentage), the speed of battery charging (in electric kilometres) as well as the remaining charge time before reaching full charge (in hours and/or minutes).Touch screenThe touch screen also includes a specific hybrid menu. A direct access button has been added alongside piano – toggle switches. It gives access to new information:the energy flow page that shows the operating status of the hybrid systemthe consumption statistics page which differentiates the electricity consumption from the fuel consumption.the browsing page which includes specific information: Peugeot plug-ins The models with the HYBRID powertrain are equipped with a petrol engine, 8-speed automatic gearbox and 80 kW electric motor. The battery pack is located under the rear seats to not compromise boot storage. With 11.8 kWh worth of battery capacity, estimated WLTP all-electric range is to be at over 40 km (25 miles) in case of 508/508 SW (we are not sure for the 3008).The HYBRID4 gets a slightly bigger battery – 13.2 kWh for some 50 km (31 miles) of WLTP all-electric range and an additional 80 kW electric motor in the rear. 0-100 km/h (62 mph) takes 6.5 seconds.All models will be offered with several driving modes, including e-SAVE function, which allows saving battery for further all-electric mode if needed (for the city center, for example).Peugeot 3008 GT HYBRID4 spec:13.2 kWh battery for 50 km (31 miles) of WLTP all-electric range (60 km NEDC)all-wheel drive with 220 kW/300 hp of system output: 147 kW/200 hp 1.6L PureTech combined with the new e-EAT8 8-speed automatic transmission (Electric Efficient Automatic Transmission) and 80 kW/110 hp electric motor in the front plus another 80 kW/110 hp electric motor for rear axle0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.5 secondsall-electric mode up to 135 km/hcharging using 3.3 kW on-board charger in around 4h or around 2h using 6.6 kW optional chargerPeugeot 3008 GT HYBRID spec:11.8 kWh battery for probably ≈40 km (25 miles) of WLTPfront-wheel drive with 165 kW/225 hp of system output: 132 kW/180 hp 1.6L PureTech combined with the new e-EAT8 8-speed automatic transmission (Electric Efficient Automatic Transmission) and 80 kW/110 hp electric motor in the frontall-electric mode up to 135 km/hcharging using 3.3 kW on-board charger in around 4h or around 2h using 6.6 kW optional charger Citroën Shows C5 Aircross SUV Hybrid Concept DS 3 Crossback Electric CUV Comes Packing 50-kWh Battery Peugeot 508 HYBRID & 508 SW HYBRID spec:11.8 kWh battery for over 40 km (25 miles) of WLTP all-electric range (50 km NEDC)front-wheel drive with 165 kW/225 hp of system output: 132 kW/180 hp 1.6L PureTech combined with the new e-EAT8 8-speed automatic transmission (Electric Efficient Automatic Transmission) and 80 kW/110 hp electric motor in the frontall-electric mode up to 135 km/hboot space – 508: 487L, 508 SW: 530Lcharging using 3.3 kW on-board charger in around 4h or around 2h using 6.6 kW optional charger 5 photos New PEUGEOT PLUG-IN HYBRID: So efficient, So Exciting!Mon, 24/09/2018 – 04:00PEUGEOT presents its new Plug-in Hybrid petrol engines.This new offer complements the existing PEUGEOT 3008 and the new PEUGEOT 508 and 508 SW engines. The HYBRID engine and the HYBRID4 (four-wheel-drive) engine will be integrated to the new PEUGEOT 508 and PEUGEOT 3008 respectively. They will be available for the second quarter of 2019.The PEUGEOT driving experience will be enhanced with new driving modes for rebooted enjoyment and sensations thanks to the magic effect of the ZEV 100% electric mode, the efficiency of the 4-wheel drive mode (HYBRID4), the power of the Sport mode or the versatility of the Hybrid mode.The technology is simple and intuitive, at the service of full freedom: freedom of use, with vehicles adapted to road, urban or outdoor routes. Freedom of choice, with 2 or 4 driving wheels, 225hp or 300hp, sedan, SW or SUV. Freedom of use with the 4 driving modes.These two new engines are the tangible proof of PEUGEOT’s vision of unconstrained, exciting and ever more efficient mobility. #UnboringTheFuture.“Our HYBRID PLUG-INs are in perfect harmony with our brand values: they reinforce our promise of amplifying the senses. With this new offer, nothing could be simpler: customers will always come to buy a PEUGEOT and will have the choice of their engine depending on their uses! “Jean-Philippe IMPARATO, PEUGEOT brand CEO 21 photos 19 photos Press blast: Peugeot presents three new plug-in hybrids for 2019.The concept Peugeot e-LEGEND will not be the only plug-in model from Peugeot at this year’s Paris Motor Show, as the French manufacturer finally is taking electrification seriously and developed some new production models.Three models will be available in plug-in hybrid from next year – 3008, 508 and 508 SW, equipped with front-wheel drive powertrain (HYBRID) or, in case of 3008, an all-wheel-drive powertrain (HYBRID4):Peugeot 3008 GT HYBRID4Peugeot 3008 GT HYBRIDPeugeot 508 HYBRIDPeugeot 508 SW HYBRID From 2019 On, Each New PSA Model Will Be Offered In Electrified Version charging stations, in addition to fuel stations in POIsthe range of the all-electric modethe full electric + thermal range of action.Lastly, the air conditioning page displays the pre-conditioning passenger compartment, allowing to cool or warm the compartment according to the outside temperature.My Peugeot connectivityFor maximum agility, the content of the MyPeugeot mobile application has been improved. It can now activate remote charging, know the progress and state of charge of the vehicle, anticipate a pre-thermal conditioning or assess its fuel consumption or electricity at anytime and anywhere.The HYBRID and HYBRID4 engines will be integrated to the PEUGEOT 3008 and on the new PEUGEOT 508 and 508 SW in autumn 2019.“The PEUGEOT PLUG-IN HYBRID engines are a unique opportunity for the brand to complement the powerful ranges of the PEUGEOT 3008 and the new PEUGEOT 508 and 508SW! They give our customers the opportunity to buy a powerful 3008 AWD or a 508 (Sedan or SW) that is efficient and provides improved sensations. “Laurent Blanchet, PEUGEOT Product DirectorPEUGEOT 3008 GT HYBRID4: Everywhere, all the timeWith a never-before-seen power in a PEUGEOT series, the character of the SUV PEUGEOT 3008 takes on a new dimension with the powerful HYBRID4 version. This high-end offer offers 4-wheel drive and reaches the equivalent of 300hp/220kw.This is the result of the combination of a PureTech engine reaching 200hp/147kW and two electric engines (one at the front and the second at the rear) each reaching 110hp/80kW.It does 0 to 100km/h in 6.5s. The battery capacity is 13.2kWh for a 100% electric range of 50 kilometres WLTP(2) (60 kilometres NEDC(1)).4-wheel drive mode provides improved motor function on the road or rough terrain. The result is perfect grip: whether on wet, muddy, snowy or winding roads, the power is evenly distributed over the four wheels of the vehicle.The PEUGEOT 3008 HYBRID4 offers power and 4-wheel drive with CO2 emissions at the best level on the market: less than 49g of CO2 per kilometre WLTP(2).The arrival of the multi-arm rear suspension provides high level comfort for back-seat passengers. Its integration has no impact on the usability and the boot carpet which is now in a high position.The HYBRID4 engine is only available in a GT version with an exclusive Alcantara® Greval Grey trim with real aged grey oak trim. There are also new ADASs taken from the new PEUGEOT 508: adaptive cruise control with Stop & Go function and assistance in maintaining position in the traffic lane.A few months after its launch, the HYBRID4 version will be joined in the range by a HYBRID version of 225hp (165kW), which will combine a 180hp/132kW PureTech engine with a 110hp/80kW electric motor, all in traction.PEUGEOT 508 and 508 SW HYBRID: radically efficientThe new PEUGEOT 508 HYBRID and 508 SW HYBRID combine the PureTech 180hp/132kW engine with a 110hp/80kW electric motor for a combined maximum power of 225hp/165kw in traction.The HYBRID engine deployed on the new PEUGEOT 508 and 508 SW was designed to offer even more sensations. It optimizes its TCO by having the greatest efficiency in terms of CO2 emissions, with less than 49g of CO2 per kilometre WLTP(2).The battery has a capacity of 11.8kWh and ensures 100% electric autonomy over 40 kilometres WLTP(2) (50 kilometres NEDC(1)).The traction chain was implemented without compromising. The usability is preserved and the boot volumes are identical to the thermal versions (487L for PEUGEOT 508 and 530L for PEUGEOT 508 SW).This offer is widely available in 3 finishes:Allure (and Allure Business): offers ultra-equipped core range,GT Line, for dynamic typing,GT, the high-end exclusive presentation, which includes a series of exclusive upholstery in Alcantara® Greval Grey(1) Estimated data, provided for information only and subject to approval(2) The values ​​given are in accordance with the WLTP procedure. As of 1 September 2018, new vehicles are being received on the basis of the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP), which is a new, more realistic test procedure for measuring fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and the range of plug-in hybrid vehicles. This WLTP procedure is carried out with more realistic test conditions and completely replaces the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC), which was the test procedure used previously. The measured range for rechargeable hybrid vehicles using the WLTP procedure is in many cases lower than that measured using the NEDC procedure. The range values ​​shown correspond to the average values ​​of the vehicles in the range. All values ​​shown may vary depending on specific equipment, options and types of tyres. Source: Electric Vehicle News Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 24, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News read more

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Neil deGrasse Tyson Says Teslas Elon Musk Will Transform Civilization

first_imgAbove: Elon Musk and Neil deGrasse Tyson (Image: Interesting Engineering)Considering the role that people like Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, and Elon Musk play in our everyday lives, CNBC asks which of this generation’s biggest tech luminaries will ultimately be remembered for having the greatest lasting effect on the world?“As important as Steve Jobs was, no doubt about it — [and] you have to add him to Bill Gates, because they birthed the personal computing revolution kind of together — here’s the difference: Elon Musk is trying to invent a future, not by providing the next app,” deGrasse Tyson says.“What Elon Musk is doing is not simply giving us the next app that will be awesome on our smartphone,” deGrasse Tyson continues. “No, he is thinking about society, culture, how we interact, what forces need to be in play to take civilization into the next century.”.embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }Above: Neil deGrasse Tyson weighs in on Elon Musk (Youtube: CNBC Make It.)“People who own Teslas love their Tesla …” deGrasse Tyson says. “Anyone who knows and cares about space exploration knows and cares about Elon Musk.”It’s understandable deGrasse Tyson would have a soft spot for Musk’s intergalactic ambitions. After all, the astrophysicist is also director of New York’s Hayden Planetarium and host of “StarTalk” on the National Geographic Channel. When it comes to Musk, deGrasse Tyson predicts, “[H]e will transform civilization as we know it.”“Because there’s unlimited resources in space; resources that, on Earth, we fight wars over,” deGrasse Tyson tells CNBC. “In space, you don’t need to fight a war, just go to another asteroid and get your resources. A whole category of war has the potential of evaporating entirely with the exploitation of space resources, which includes the unlimited access to energy as well.”.embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }Above: Neil deGrasse Tyson tackles the brainteaser interview question that Elon Musk has used to screen potential employees (Youtube: CNBC Make It.)“[W]e’re on the frontier of the future of civilization, and no I don’t think he gets his full due from all sectors of society,” says deGrasse Tyson, “but ultimately he will when the sectors that he is pioneering transform the lives of those who currently have no clue that their life is about to change.”===Source: CNBC*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers, free of charge. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX. Check out the site here. Musk Personally Pushes Autopilot To The Limit To Improve System Tesla CEO Elon Musk: The Recode Decode Podcast Interview NEIL DEGRASSE TYSON: ELON MUSK WILL ‘TRANSFORM CIVILIZATION AS WE KNOW IT’ [VIDEO]Elon Musk remains a frequent target in the media. Clickbait journalists clack away at their keyboards and smear the Tesla and SpaceX CEO on a regular basis. Sometimes an outside perspective is needed — especially from someone who really knows science and space. To that end, CNBC sat down with renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to get his take on Elon Musk.More Elon Musk Coverage: Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on November 25, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle Newscenter_img Elon Musk Buys $20 Million In Additional TSLA Stock Source: Electric Vehicle News *This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Matt Pressman. The opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily our own at InsideEVs.last_img read more

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