Hi from Palm Springs, Calif., where David McCabe and I are braving the heat (OK, cowering in the air conditioning) to take part in the annual gathering of NLGJA, the Association of LGBTQ Journalists.
Situational awareness: Two Tesla executives announced they are resigning this morning: Gabrielle Toledano, chief people officer, and Dave Morton, chief accounting officer. The news sent Tesla's stock sharply down in early trading.
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios
When Amazon invited cities to compete for its second global headquarters a year ago today, it got reams of data from the 238 entrants. That, Axios' Erica Pandey reports, is enough to learn details of the cities' future plans that a lot of their residents don't even know about.
Why it matters: The information effectively provided Amazon with a database chock full of granular details about the economic development prospects of every major metropolitan area in the U.S. (and some in Canada).
For a rapidly-expanding tech behemoth like Amazon, that database could help it make expansion decisions that go way beyond the new headquarters.
Companies have conducted site searches in the past, but none have come close to the scale of the Amazon HQ2 search.
That's because Amazon is "not just looking for HQ2," says Joe Parilla of the Brookings Institution. "They're looking for where they're going to put the next data center, the next logistics center, the next R&D facility."
Amazon's warehouses are within 20 miles of 31% of the U.S. population, while Walmart — its competitor — owns stores within 20 miles of 98% of the population, says Cooper Smith, an industry analyst at Gartner L2.
"Given they are siting new facilities like mad, this is a huge gift provided by taxpayers," Richard Florida, a professor at the University of Toronto, tells Axios.
Much of the quantitative data that Amazon picked up from cities is publicly available, Parilla says. What matters is the qualitative data cities offered up — they let Amazon in on their wildest dreams.
After an initial wave of glowing publicity around Amazon's plan to bring 50,000 jobs to the winning city through HQ2, the search has been criticized for lack of transparency around what exactly cities are offering the company to win.
Former Equifax CEO Richard Smith is grilled before the Senate banking committee in 2017. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty
The Equifax data breach was supposed to change everything about cybersecurity regulation on Capitol Hill. But it's one year later today and it's not clear much of anything has changed, Axios' Joe Uchill reports.
Why it matters: Equifax — one of the major credit reporting agencies — announced a year ago that 145.5 million U.S. adults had their social security numbers stolen in an easily preventable breach. If any data breach was going to be able to shock Washington into enacting sweeping privacy reforms, this should have been it.
What was supposed to happen: After the first of several hearings involving Equifax, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chair of the Judiciary Committee, said it was "long past time” for federal standards for how companies like Equifax secure data.
What actually happened: The bills petered out. "The initial interest that was implied by congressional actions didn't pan out," said Michelle Richardson, director of the Privacy and Data Project at the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT).
What went wrong:
Go deeper: Joe has more here.
Google confirmed its hardware unit will hold a launch event in New York on Oct. 9. There the company is expected to roll out the widely leaked Pixel 3, among other devices.
With the Pixel's specifications and design already out there, the big question is whether Google will secure broader distribution or otherwise find a way for its device to grab more of the market.
Why it matters: While Google is still not a giant player in hardware, it's a growing force via the Pixel phone, Google Home and its line of Chromebooks.
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios
The shortage of AI talent is getting a lot of the humans in the field hot under the collar, Axios' Kaveh Waddell reports.
The problem, some say, is that what was once an important academic field is being stunted by the fact that all of the experts are heading off for industry.
The context: Demand for AI experts is through the roof, and supply can’t keep up.
The bottom line: While far from a new conflict, the challenge is nonetheless an important one for a field that needs long-term thinking as much or more than incremental advances.
Go deeper: Kaveh has more here.
What's old is new and what tried to be new is old news.