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From sleep habits to pets, Amazon devices are learning more. Much more

Business / Business News /

Amazon is using tech to get even closer to its customers.

It introduced a new sleep tracker, Halo Rise, that learns breathing patterns and senses room conditions to help users optimize sleep. Astro, its home robot, will soon be able to recognize doors, windows, pets and furniture in a user's home.

A new iteration of Blink, its home-security ...Read more

New California law will require job postings to include salary ranges

Business / Business News /

Companies with 15 or more employees in California will be required to list salary ranges for all job postings under a law signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom this week.

Senate Bill 1162 is set to take effect in May 2023, bringing California in line with states such as Washington, Colorado and Connecticut that have passed similar wage transparency laws ...Read more

You can keep getting free weekly credit reports -- at least through 2023

Business / Business News /

Citing the impact of decades-high inflation on consumers' wallets, the nation's biggest credit reporting agencies — Experian, Equifax and TransUnion — agreed to continue to offer free weekly credit reports through the end of next year.

Under federal law, consumers are entitled to one free credit report annually from each of the bureaus. But...Read more

Builder of quantum computers opens research and development facility in Boulder

Business / Business News /

Atom Computing, a California-based startup that builds quantum computers, opened its largest research and development facility in Boulder on Wednesday.

The new location marks a win for Colorado’s growing quantum industry, which is centered around the Denver-Boulder area. Other players in the market include Boulder-based ColdQuanta, Quantum ...Read more

GM partners with Silicon Valley company on battery tech

Business / Business News /

General Motors Co. and Palo Alto-based OneD Battery Sciences have entered a joint research development agreement for the potential use of OneD's silicon nanotechnology in GM's battery cells to increase energy density for longer range at a lower cost.

GM Ventures participated in OneD's Series C funding round, which the company recently closed at...Read more

Are California's public pension funds headed for another crisis?

Business / Business News /

Atom Computing, a California-based startup that builds quantum computers, opened its largest research and development facility in Boulder on Wednesday.

The new location marks a win for Colorado’s growing quantum industry, which is centered around the Denver-Boulder area. Other players in the market include Boulder-based ColdQuanta, Quantum ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: What should we do if our house has minor damage from Hurricane Ian?

Business / Business News /

Q: Despite our preparations, Hurricane Ian’s storm bands damaged our home. Fortunately, the damage was relatively minor. What should we do now? – John

A: Your priority should always be staying safe during and after a storm or other disaster. Watch out for deep puddles, hanging power lines, and other hazards. If you have to use a generator, ...Read more

Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group/TNS

California food-delivery startup Locale fined $140,000 by feds for using child drivers

Business / Business News /

Federal workplace regulators have fined San Jose food-delivery startup Locale $140,000 for employing more than six dozen teenaged drivers in violation of child-labor law.

The drivers, aged 16 and 17, made deliveries for Locale between July 2020 and July 2021, U.S. Department of Labor officials said Wednesday.

“Performing time-sensitive ...Read more

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America/TNS

US jobless claims fall unexpectedly to lowest since late April

Business / Business News /

Applications for U.S. unemployment insurance dropped unexpectedly to a five-month low, led by a sizable decline in Michigan, suggesting robust demand for workers amid economic uncertainty.

Initial unemployment claims decreased by 16,000 to 193,000 in the week ended Sept. 24, after downward revision in the prior week, Labor Department data ...Read more

Butter, garage doors and SUVs: Why shortages remain common 2½ years into the pandemic

Business / Business News /

Shortages of basic goods still plague the U.S. economy – 2½ years after the pandemic’s onset turned global supply chains upside down.

Want a new car? You may have to wait as long as six months, depending on the model you order. Looking for a spicy condiment? Supplies of Sriracha hot sauce have been running dangerously low. And if...Read more

Shae Hammond/Bay Area News Group/TNS

Do tiny homes really work as a solution to homelessness? Here's what the data show

Business / Business News /

When Robert Hernandez unpacked his meager belongings into one of San Jose’s celebrated tiny homes, finally getting a bed and access to a shower after more than a decade on the street, he had reason to be elated.

After all, tiny homes have become the hot new thing in the fight to end homelessness. The simple dwellings have multiplied across ...Read more

Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group/TNS

California's 'racist' Article 34 remains an obstacle to affordable housing

Business / Business News /

When voters in Oakland, Berkeley and South San Francisco, California, receive ballots in the mail next month, they’ll be asked whether their cities should be allowed to help build more desperately needed affordable housing.

The reason for seeking voters’ permission? A 72-year-old provision in the California Constitution requiring local ...Read more

Avoid these common real estate scams

Business / Business News /

From buying to renting to selling, real estate scams can target landlords and local residents in many situations. It’s a criminal practice that can seriously damage your wallet, credit and peace of mind.

Wire scams

According to realtor.com, one of the common real estate fake-outs is the wire scam.

“This is basically a scam where someone ...Read more

CHRISTOPHER VONDRACEK/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

Seeds of a food revolution grow on this Minnesota Indian reservation

Business / Business News /

MAHNOMEN, Minnesota — Hours after a parade ends marking the White Earth Tribal and Community College's 25th anniversary, Robert Shimek is standing near some squash in a field, marveling at a bumblebee crawling into a blossom.

"Oh, that's a great big one," said Shimek, an extension employee with the college. "That tells you the soil is healthy...Read more

Dania Maxwell/Los Angeles Times/TNS

With interest rates surging, what does a starter home look like in Southern California?

Business / Business News /

For decades, the single-family home has been Southern California's ultimate lure — a chance to live a life of sun and sand from the comfort of your very own property.

Most buyers' ticket into that life is the starter home. Something modest but not minuscule. Two bedrooms, maybe three. A picket fence in front and a yard out back for the kids ...Read more

Carline Jean/Sun Sentinel/TNS

As mortgage rates soared, here's how much homebuyers lost in purchasing power

Business / Business News /

Homebuyers have lost six figures in buying power over the past year, thanks to soaring mortgage rates, according to new research.

It’s the equivalent of about $140,000, a new report from RedFin calculates, as mortgage rates jumped to 6% since the beginning of the year.

“Raising interest rates is necessary to fight inflation, but it comes ...Read more

Richard Tsong-Taatarii/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

Peak oil has finally arrived. No, Really

Business / Business News /

I’ve rarely felt more trepidation about writing a column than this one. But here goes: After more than a century of almost continual growth, the world’s appetite for oil is peaking, and will soon enter terminal decline.

That’s hard to write, because those who’ve called a top in oil have a forecasting record on a par with film producer ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

How to get more value from your smartphone

Business / Business News /

By some estimates, Americans spend as much as three hours a day on their smartphone, if all touches are added up.

The value users receive from their phones, however, can depend on how much that person understands what's available, or possible, with that device.

We talked with cellular service, app developers and device management executives ...Read more

Alex Kormann/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

This company is bioengineering pig kidneys and livers for possible transplant into humans

Business / Business News /

In an Minnesota lab, clear containers hold pig kidneys and livers that scientists hope will someday be transplantable in humans.

Miromatrix Medical, a biomedical firm based in the Twin Cities suburb of Eden Prairie, is exploring the scientific area known as xenotransplantation.

Xenotransplantation is a blanket term for a wide range of ...Read more

Hector Amezcua/The Sacramento Bee/TNS

Newsom signs UFW bill aimed at helping California farmworkers organize

Business / Business News /

After previously indicating he might veto the measure, Gov. Gavin Newson signed a new law Wednesday that will make it easier for agricultural laborers to join unions, a hard-fought win for the United Farm Workers.

The official signature came after union members and their supporters made a 335-mile pilgrimage from Delano to Sacramento and then ...Read more