theNewsWorthy: Friday, August 17th, 2018


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All the news stories mentioned in today's episode are listed with links below, so you can spend as much -- or as little -- time as you want perusing the latest happenings...


The 'Queen of Soul,' Aretha Franklin, has died. The Associated Press says she passed away yesterday of pancreatic cancer.
She’s remembered as one of the greatest singers in history. People Magazine says she won 18 Grammy awards out of 44 nominations. She sold tens of millions of records, and she was even the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Her many hit songs include “Natural Woman” and “Respect.” The tributes are now pouring in. Aretha Franklin was 76.
Read More: TIMEPeopleAssociated PressVarietyThe New Yorker


There’s new video of what’s being called a “fire tornado.” Basically, it’s a tornado with flames around it. It happened late last month near Redding, California, but the video was just released.
The LA Times says the tornado part of it may have been California’s strongeston record, since the state doesn’t get many tornadoes. It’s also believed to have caused the death of a firefighter there.
That wildfire and several others around California are still burning.
Read More: TIMELA TimesThe Washington Post


Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk opened up to The New York Times in a way we don’t often see. The Times reports he teared up and explained the toll this year has taken on him, both physically and emotionally.
He’s still dealing with a lot: there’s a federal investigation about the tweetMusk sent out last week – the one where he said he would take the company private and had funding secured. Well, it turns out the funding isn’t exactly secured.
Business Insider also reports a second ex-employee is accusing Tesla of spying on employees, theft and more. Musk calls the guy nuts.
To be continued...

Read More: Business InsiderWall Street JournalNew York Times


More than 1,000 people signed a letter to protest Google, and those people are Google employeesBuzzFeed News says the employees want to know more about a secret project codenamed “Dragonfly.”
Remember: it’s Google’s plan to get back into the Chinese market with a censored search app that complies with China’s rules. China requires the internet not really show everything.

Google left China back in 2010 because of censorship and hacking. Now, the employees say they want more information and transparency about the project to go back in. They want to be able to make "ethically-informed decisions."
This isn’t the first time Google has faced internal backlash related to ethics. Earlier this year, thousands of employees signed a petition asking the company to cancel a contract with the military related to drones and artificial intelligence. Some employees even resigned over it. It worked. Google didn’t renew that contract.
One more thing about Google: it seems the company may be opening its first full-time retail store. The Verge says the plan is for a two level store in Chicago’s Fulton Market.
Read More: BuzzFeed NewsNew York TimesUSA TodayThe Verge


FREE medical school for everyone? It’s happening. At least at New York University. NYU now says it’ll cover tuition for all its med students, no matter their financial situation.

The Wall Street Journal reports school officials are worried new doctors are being forced into high-paying fields because they have a huge amount of debt. Instead, NYU hopes paying their tuition will help get more new doctors to become researchers and primary care physicians. There’s a shortage right now.
This is a first-of-its kind offer from a major medical school in the US.
Read More: Wall Street JournalNBC News


The first ever generic competition for the EpiPen is now FDA-approved. The hope is that it’ll help bring down the cost of the original EpiPen, too.
While it's now approved, it’s still not clear how much this new generic version will cost or exactly when it’ll be available in pharmacies.
Before, without competition from another company, the makers of the EpiPen faced a lot of criticism for raising the cost of the drug as much as six times the original price. There have also been shortages.
The EpiPen is often necessary for people with severe allergies. It can save them if they’re having a life-threatening allergic reaction.
Read More: CNBCNew York Times


The largest grocery chain in the US and a self-driving car startup are joining forces for driverless grocery delivery.
Kroger is partnering with Nuro to bring self-driving tech to one of its Fry’s Food and Drug stores in Arizona to try out. There will be a flat delivery fee of $5.95.

For now, TechCrunch says, they’ll use Toyota Prius cars with Nuro’s driverless tech installed. That’s so human safety drivers can be involved, too.
Later this year, Nuro wants to use its own custom cars, which are actually more like small delivery pods with no seats for humans. They are designed to carry groceries or pizza.
Read More: BloombergTechCrunchReuters


Amazon is apparently in the running to buy a movie theatre chain.
Bloomberg reports Amazon is looking to buy Landmark Theatres, which is currently backed by billionaire Mark Cuban.
Landmark has 50 theatres in 27 markets, with a focus on independent and foreign films.
Analysts told Bloomberg this could be Amazon trying to have broader distribution of its own films. This is not a done deal, so stay tuned
Read More: Bloomberg


A lot of people are expected to see the movie Crazy Rich Asians this weekend.
It’s a romantic comedy, and Forbes reports it’s the first Hollywood movie with a mostly Asian cast since 1993’s The Joy Luck Club.
Crazy Rich Asians debuted on Wednesday. It’s expected to have an opening weekend of more than $25 million.
Read More: Forbes




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