Each week, Sheppard Mullin brings you News of Note in IP: The latest news in the IP-related fields of technology, privacy, fashion, advertising, music, and social media, curated by our IP team. Here are some of the stories that we’ve been reading:
Microsoft Partnership Cashes In on Legal Marijuana Boom
Marijuana is now legal for medical or recreational use in 20 states, and a hefty crop of IT companies are sprouting up to support this industry. KIND Financial, a leader in technology for cannabis compliance, has partnered with Microsoft to run its software on Microsoft’s Azure Government platform.
Net Neutrality Upheld for Third Time
A divided three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld the Federal Communications Commission’s “net neutrality” rules in a really, really long opinion. Under these rules, all broadband service providers are required to treat all content or internet traffic identically. The ruling was a major victory for the Obama administration, which had pressed for the rules—but not everyone is thrilled. Proponents of net neutrality rules include media celebrities like Stephen Colbert and John Oliver, the latter credited for inspiring 45,000 public comments to the FCC on the subject of net neutrality.
Deep Thunder: Weather is Big Business
The Weather Company, recently acquired by IBM, has a new commercial offering called Deep Thunder. Deep Thunder combines independently developed versions of the government’s WRF forecast system to help businesses anticipate problems and to forecast retrospectively to better predict how variations in weather conditions affect everything from consumer buying patterns to business supply chains
Improving Public Transit One 3D-Printed Autonomous Bus At a Time
Meet Olli: Local Motors has unveiled its crowd-sourced, partially-recyclable, autonomous electric shuttle vehicle in D.C. this summer. Olli utilizes IBM’s Watson cognitive learning software to take input from any language, translate it, take users to their destinations, and even learn user’s habits.
Explosion of the Week: NASA Sets a Spacecraft on Fire—On Purpose
Some people just want to watch the world burn. Apparently, that includes the folks at NASA. To study how fire behaves in microgravity, NASA started a fire in Orbital ATK Cygnus cargo vessel, which whizzed around the Earth for eight days collecting data before ending its life in a much bigger ball of fire on reentry. The experiment was the first in a three-part series of experiments, called Saffire, which NASA is conducting to study how flames grow in space.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants 5G wireless to be available starting in 2020 and has laid out its plans to push the technology forward. Federal regulators announced plans this week for a mid-July vote on the so-called Spectrum Frontiers proceeding.