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Uber bringing fleet of self-driving cars to Washington, DC
Andrei Stanescu/iStock (WASHINGTON) -- Uber is bringing a fleet of self-driving cars to the nation's capital to begin mapping out prospective routes -- aided by human drivers at first -- starting on Friday.The new self-driving cars that are expected to hit the roads in Washington, D.C., will have the initial goal of data collection, and will have a human vehicle operator maintaining control of the car at all times, Uber said in a blogpost."We are using a phased approach to develop and deploy our self-driving vehicles, taking the necessary steps to operate safely in every city," Danielle Burr, the head...
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Tesla overtakes Volkswagen for No. 2 spot among world's most valuable carmakers
jetcityimage/iStock (NEW YORK) -- The U.S. electric car company Tesla has topped Germany's Volkswagen to become the second most valuable automaker in the world.The electric car maker's market value surpassed the $100 billion mark this week, overtaking Volkswagen's approximate $99 billion. Both car companies still trail far behind the value of Japan's Toyota, which has a market cap of more than $234 billion.Tesla, a relatively new player to the industry, was founded by CEO Elon Musk in 2003. Volkswagen's history dates back to 1930's Germany.Surpassing the $100 billion market cap could mean a big pay bump for Musk, potentially unlocking...
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Greta Thunberg joins climate strike on last day in Davos
DisobeyArt/iStock (DAVOS, Switzerland) -- Greta Thunberg joined fellow activists in a climate strike Friday, capping off her time in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum, where she continued her push for climate change action.Earlier that day, Thunberg once again called out world and business leaders for their inaction on the issue."As long as the science is being ignored, as long as the facts are not being taken into account and as long as the situation is not being treated as a crisis, then world and business leaders can of course continue to ignore the situation," she said at a...
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Gas-guzzling Hummer could make its comeback as an all-electric truck
Spauln/iStock (NEW YORK) -- General Motors' hulking, ostentatious, gas-guzzling Hummer SUV was once the scourge of environmentalists. Now the military-style ute may have its ultimate revenge: a second chance as an all-electric pickup truck. That's right. GM, which discontinued the Hummer brand in 2010 as gasoline prices were skyrocketing and the Detroit automaker was culling brands as part of its bankruptcy agreement, has decided to revive the Hummer name, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. The nameplate will allegedly be sold under GM's GMC brand, the company's premium truck division. The new Hummer will be officially announced...
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Steve Mnuchin tells Greta Thunberg to study economics before discussing fossil fuel divestment
Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks (DAVOS, Switzerland) -- U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said teen climate activist Greta Thunberg can talk about divesting from fossil fuels "after she goes and studies economics." Mnuchin made the comments to reporters Thursday in Davos, Switzerland, where world and business leaders are gathering for the annual World Economic Forum meeting.Thunberg, 17, and Mnuchin, 57, were both headline speakers at this year's gathering.When asked by a reporter if Thunberg's call for an end to fossil fuel investment would threaten U.S. economic growth, Mnuchin responded with: "Is she the chief economist or who is...
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Cashless stores and restaurants banned in New York City
SolStock/iStock (NEW YORK) -- Cash will remain king in Big Apple stores and restaurants.The New York City Council will vote Thursday to prohibit businesses from only accepting credit card, debit or digital payments. There were concerns from elected officials that such stores and eateries discriminated against poorer customers who don't have access to bank accounts, according to city councilman Ritchie Torres, who drafted the bill."Whatever your reasons, consumers should have the power to choose their preferred method of payment," he said at a news conference before the vote.The bill, which will take effect 90 days after it is signed, makes...
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Tinder is adding a panic button to its app for dating emergencies and cracks down on catfishing
iStock/Wachiwit (NEW YORK) -- Tinder announced a slew of new safety features Thursday, ranging from letting users call emergency services while on a date to a photo verification system that ensures "every match is who they say they are."The updates come a little over a year after headlines about a suspected dating site serial killer rattled those looking for love online.The dating platform is teaming up with safety app Noonlight to allow users to share details about upcoming dates so there is a record of who they are meeting, where and when.It also gives users a panic button of sorts...
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Sin City changes famous 'What happens here, stays here' slogan
georgeclerk/iStock (LAS VEGAS) -- For years visitors have come to know that what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas -- but now Sin City's slogan is getting an update.The award-winning campaign -- "What happens here, stays here" first created in 2002 -- will reportedly change to "What happens here, only happens here."The new tourism slogan is expected to be officially unveiled in a 60-second ad during the broadcast of the Grammy Awards on Jan. 26, R&R Partners, the advertising agency behind the slogan told ABC News.Steve Hill, the president and CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, announced...
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Zero-based budget helped woman pay off $215k worth of debt in four years
DNY59/iStock (NEW YORK) -- When Cindy Zuniga graduated from law school in 2015, she accomplished a major milestone, but it also came with a hefty $215,000 mountain of debt. “Ninety percent was law school, five percent was from my undergrad and five percent was credit card debt,” she explained to ABC News' Good Morning America. Like many graduates, she decided to defer her loans for one year after getting her degree, but when that period was over, she started chipping away and began making normal, monthly payments like she was taught to do.It seemed like a simple and straightforward strategy,...
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Boeing's new CEO: 'We were our own worst enemy'
Wolterk/iStock (NEW YORK) -- Boeing CEO David Calhoun, who's been on the job about a week, said that in the aftermath of the 737 Max crisis, "We were our own worst enemy." Calhoun, a longtime Boeing board member who took over after the sudden departure of Dennis Muilenburg, spoke out on Wednesday about how he hoped to restore trust among his employees and his customers.The best way to rebuild consumer confidence in the 737 Max jets, Calhoun added, is when pilots can vouch for them. "When pilots get on that airplane and support that airplane, I believe passengers will follow,"...
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DOT proposes new rules for emotional support animals on planes
tonefotografia/iStock (WASHINGTON) -- Travelers may be used to flying with their emotional support animals -- anything from a pet hamster to a baby crocodile -- but the rules are about to change, according to a new proposal from the Department of Transportation. The proposal unveiled by DOT on Wednesday proposes to strictly limit the definition of a service animal to a dog, reversing a policy that permits a wide range of other animals to fly under that framework.DOT’s new rule also no longer requires airlines to recognize emotional support animals, with the agency citing a number of reasons for the...
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Coalition of NGOs battling private equity firm trying to buy '.org' domain
DenisKot/iStock (NEW YORK) -- Some of the world's biggest nonprofit organizations are banding together to fight the purchase of the ".org" internet address by a private equity firm, calling management of the domain a "human rights and social justice issue." ".ORG is the place where civil society and NGOs reside in the digital environment," read an open letter to the internet's governing body, signed by leaders from groups including Greenpeace, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and the American Civil Liberties Union.The coalition of NGOs raised concerns over price-raising, surveillance and online censorship, among others. Their letter was released Wednesday in...
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