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The president examines a drone at a tech-focused event last year. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The Trump administration released a report Wednesday touting its tech-focused work across government in areas like artificial intelligence and biotech.

Why it matters: The White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy is trying to show results despite tensions between the administration and both the tech industry and the science community.

The details: Officials mentioned efforts like the Department of Transportations updated policy on self-driving cars and the Commerce Department’s continued support of a key privacy agreement with the European Union. “These highlights represent only a fraction of the tremendous scientific and technological work conducted across the Federal Government,” the report says.

Yes, but: Many of the scientific accomplishments touted in the report were set in motion long before the Trump administration began. For example, while NSF-funded research won Nobel Prizes in 2017, those awards were for research conducted years previously, and although ground broke on the DUNE facility in July, plans for the international facility were drawn during the Obama administration. Science is a process that builds over generations, so it's difficult for any one president to take credit for scientific discoveries.

The bottom line: Trump requested drastic cuts to scientific organizations in both of his budget proposals, and the Office of Science and Technology still lacks a director to lead it or a CTO to head up its tech work, and has so many empty desks it's been described as a ghost town.

This story has been updated to reflect that OSTP's director, not the U.S. Chief Technology Officer, leads the office.

Go deeper

Updated 14 mins ago - Technology

Instagram's boss faces Congress' questions on harm to teens

Photo illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for WIRED

The head of Instagram will find himself in Congress' crosshairs for the first time Wednesday in the one area lawmakers have shown they are willing to pass tech regulations — protecting youngsters online.

Why it matters: Republicans and Democrats have found common ground in grilling tech companies on how their products harm children, especially after revelations in The Wall Street Journal about Instagram's potential harm to the mental health of teen girls.

Jan. 6 committee to start contempt proceedings against Meadows

Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

The Jan. 6 select committee plans to move forward with contempt proceedings against former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows for his refusal to comply with the panel's subpoena.

Why it matters: The committee has used the threat of contempt — and the associated financial and reputational costs — to try to ensure evasive witnesses sit for their depositions.

Complaint to FTC: Amazon search results full of potentially deceiving ads

Photo: Nigel Kirby/Loop Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Amazon does not sufficiently distinguish between its search results and paid ads, potentially "deceiving millions of consumers," according to a complaint filed to the Federal Trade Commission.

Why it matters: Joan Moriarty, research director for the Strategic Organizing Center, a coalition of labor unions that filed the complaint, told the Washington Post the group is "very hopeful" that the FTC will investigate the complaint because Lina Khan (D), a known Amazon critic, is now chair.