CEO Satya Nadella (AP/Rafiq Maqbool

The contest for more sophisticated artificial intelligence systems has hotted up with an announcement of a big new lab — Microsoft Research AI, in which the software behemoth will employ more than 100 scientists to study how a single system of AI can tackle a wide range of jobs, rather than a single task, per Bloomberg. The new lab will partner with MIT, Microsoft said.

One of the new lab's initiatives is called AI for Earth, which will offer tools to environmentalists working on problems including climate and water shortages, Wired reports. As we've reported, Microsoft already was using its software to track pollution in places like Chesapeake Bay.

Why it matters: Microsoft is stepping up an already-fiercely competitive race toward smarter machines against Alphabet and Elon Musk's OpenAI.

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Twitter launches warnings on election misinformation and delays

Photo: courtesy of Twitter

Twitter will start pinning notices to the top of all U.S. Twitter users’ timelines warning that results in next week’s election may be delayed and that they may encounter misinformation on mail-in voting.

Why it matters: Delayed election results are expected across many states that are handling unprecedented amounts of absentee and mailed ballots, which President Trump has baselessly called "very dangerous" and "corrupt."

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
2 hours ago - Science

NASA confirms water exists on sunny parts of the Moon


Water on the Moon might be more easily accessible than previously thought, opening up new possible avenues for future human exploration, according to a new study.

Why it matters: NASA is aiming to send people back to the Moon as part of its Artemis program by 2024, with plans to eventually create a sustainable presence on the lunar surface. That sustainability relies on mining the moon for its resources, like water.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Pence no longer expected at Amy Coney Barrett's final confirmation vote

Photo: Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence no longer plans to attend the Senate's final confirmation vote for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, a Pence aide confirmed to CNN and Politico on Monday. On Sunday, Senate Democrats claimed that his presence after possible exposure to the coronavirus would be a "violation of common decency."

Driving the news: Five of Pence's aides were recently diagnosed with COVID-19, including his chief of staff, who is currently quarantining. Pence has continued his campaign travel despite his possible exposure, which goes against CDC guidelines.