Hashtag Trending June 6 – Axon’s taser drone; New York’s right to repair bill; Tesla staff cut

Axon forges ahead with its taser drone program, New York state inches closer to passing a right to repair bill covering general electronics, and Tesla may cut its staff by 10 per cent.

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That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now, welcome to Hashtag Trending. It’s Monday, June 6, and I’m your host, Tom Li.

Law enforcement technology maker Axon has supposedly ignored the advice of its AI ethics board and approved its plans to develop a Taser Drone. According to a Protocol report, Axon intends to use this drone as a non-lethal alternative to stop school shootings. Its AI ethics board had previously voted against the idea as its risks outweigh the benefits. Some board members, who had joined the board because they believed in doing good, are considering whether to continue working with the company. Additionally, they are now worried about the board’s power and purpose when weighed against the company’s interests.

Source: Protocol

The New York state legislature has passed the first right to repair bill for general electronics in the United States. Named the Fair Repair Act, the bill would require manufacturers to provide tools, parts and instructions for repairs to consumers and shops. Now, the bill awaits the approval of governor Kathy Hochul. Consumers and independent repair shops have been calling for the right to repair, especially concerning consumer electronics. While New York isn’t the first state to pass a right to repair law, its effects are broader than most others, which so far have only targeted specific classes of electronics.

Source: The Verge

Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that the company may need to cut staff by 10 per cent, attributed to a “super bad feeling” about the economy. Additionally, the company may pause hiring worldwide. The notice came in the form of an email, which was seen by Reuters. This is the latest in a string of bad news for the company’s work culture. Last week, Musk doubled down on in-person work, requiring every employee to work a minimum of 40 hours per week in the office. He said he was willing to make exceptions under extraordinary circumstances, but also that anyone who does not comply can “depart” the company.

Source: News18

Speaking of Tesla, more than 750 Tesla electric vehicle owners have complained that their cars would randomly stop when using the car’s assisted driving features. The complaints have been picked up by U.S. safety regulators, who have asked Tesla for reports it has received about false braking. It also inquired if the company’s “Full Self Driving” feature and automatic emergency braking systems were active in those incidents. Tesla has until June 20 to respond to the information request. So far, the “phantom braking” has not caused crashes or injuries.

Source: Associated Press

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash briefings or your Google Home daily briefing. Make sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire newsletter to get all the news that matters directly in your inbox every day. Also, catch the next episode of Hashtag Tendances, our weekly Hashtag Trending episode in French, which drops every Thursday morning. If you have a suggestion or a tip, drop us a line in the comments or via email. Thank you for listening, I’m Tom Li.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Tom Li
Tom Li
Telecommunication and consumer hardware are Tom's main beats at Channel Daily News. He loves to talk about Canada's network infrastructure, semiconductor products, and of course, anything hot and new in the consumer technology space. You'll also occasionally see his name appended to articles on cloud, security, and SaaS-related news. If you're ever up for a lengthy discussion about the nuances of each of the above sectors or have an upcoming product that people will love, feel free to drop him a line at tli@itwc.ca.

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