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Ringo H.W. Chiu / AP

Tesla hires one of Apple's top software guys

Elon Musk's car company has hired Chris Lattner to lead its Autopilot software team—a big hire as Lattner is credited with creating Apple's mobile programming language, Swift.

Irony: Musk once called Apple "a Tesla graveyard," adding, "If you don't make it at Tesla, you go work at Apple."

Tesla's clear message: Its Autopilot software is top priority.

  • Tesla made its name as an electric car company, but autonomous cars are its ultimate goal.
  • Its Autopilot software is a critical part of its self-driving technology, and Tesla has chosen an expert who has developed something as fundamental as a programming language.
David Plouffe will help Mark Zuckerberg's philanthropic efforts

Obama's 2008 presidential campaign manager is headed to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to lead public policy efforts. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, formed the organization in late 2015 to take on ambitious goals like curing human diseases and improving education.

That's not all: Ken Mehlman, who managed Bush's 2004 presidential campaign, will lead the organization's new public policy advisory board while continuing to work for KKR, a private equity firm.

What it means: Zuckerberg is gearing up to take on big political battles for his philanthropic quests. It's also hard to ignore that Plouffe's other job in Silicon Valley is to advise Uber, a company known for its aggressive tactics and occasionally loose interpretation of laws.

Go deeper

3 mins ago - Politics & Policy

First kook: Harris wants more union membership in fed workforce

Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at a virtual town hall with Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) on Oct. 14. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Vice President Kamala Harris and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh will today announce new guidelines to encourage federal workers to join unions, according to a White House official.

Why it matters: The Biden administration wants to bolster the collective bargaining power of workers across the country – and they are starting at home, with changes in the federal workforce.

5 mins ago - Health

The global coronavirus vaccine gap

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, particularly low-income countries. Pressure is increasing on the Biden administration to close the gap — and the Biden administration, in turn, is pushing Moderna to fill it.

Why it matters: Getting global vaccination rates as high as possible isn't just a humanitarian effort; it also reduces the risk of vaccine-resistant variants emerging.

John Deere strikers want to reclaim labor’s lost bargaining power

Workers strike outside the John Deere Des Moines Works facility in Ankeny, Iowa on Friday. Photo: Rachel Mummey/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The strike at John Deere is the biggest of the pandemic era, with 10,000 workers on the picket line calling for better pay and benefits.

Why it matters: The walkout could deal a blow to an economy rattled by a supply chain crisis that executives don't want to see get worse — one of the economic tailwinds behind the strikers.