Photo: Boeing

Imagine a helicopter and a small propeller plane had a baby: That's what Boeing's new autonomous "passenger air vehicle" — apparently they can't settle on a name either — looks like.

Details: The plane-copter-thing is electric and can fly on its own for 50 miles — including vertical takeoff and landing, Boeing says. It flew for the first time yesterday. Several companies, including Uber, are working on autonomous flying for short in-city hops. Air travel has its own challenges, but in one way, it's easier than autonomous driving: There are far fewer obstacles.

What's next: Boeing's urban mobility division is also working on a version to carry 500 pounds of cargo, which it says it will test outdoors this year.

Go deeper: Self-flying aircraft an overlooked opportunity in autonomous transport

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Stocks close down more than 3%

Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld via Getty Images

Stocks took a hit on Wednesday, with the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrials Average and Nasdaq dropping more than 3% across the board.

Why it matters: The volatility is a break from the stock market grinding higher in the face of spiking coronavirus cases, a stalling economy and gridlocked negotiations over an additional stimulus package.

Zeta, now a Category 2 Hurricane, closes in on Louisiana coast

The probable path of Zeta, per the National Hurricane Center. Photo: NHC/NOAA

Zeta strengthened on Wednesday afternoon, on track to make landfall along the southeastern coast of Louisiana by the afternoon as a "significant" Category 2 hurricane, per the National Hurricane Center.

The state of play: Zeta is producing 100-mph maximum sustained winds and stronger gusts. The storm is gaining strength as it heads northeastward at 20 mph. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) requested a pre-landfall Emergency Declaration in a letter to President Trump on Tuesday.