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Semiconductor manufacturers on the verge of a boom are facing a critical shortage of workers to staff new facilities. ABC News business correspondent Alexis Christoforous reports.
The Job Market
A strong job market is a good sign for the economy. The more people who are working, the more money they can spend, and the more goods and services companies can produce. The job market is a key indicator of how well the economy is doing, and it can help predict how the stock market will perform.
Even though unemployment is at a half-century low, some experts worry that the economy could cool down. The Federal Reserve has been hiking interest rates to fight inflation, and the recent turmoil in the banking sector could make it harder for businesses to get the credit they need.
For now, the job market is still strong, but it is becoming increasingly competitive for job seekers. With so many qualified candidates in the pool, job hunters have to be more strategic in how they approach their search. This means they need to focus on boosting their resume and professional brand, and be more selective about where they apply for jobs.
While the hiring climate may be tough for some industries, others are continuing to recruit for new employees. The demand for workers in sectors like health care, technology and finance is expected to remain high throughout 2023.
For college students, now is an ideal time to start thinking about what they want to do with their careers. However, with the news of more layoffs at some big-name tech firms, some grads are worried about entering the workforce. That’s why it is important for young professionals to stay up to date on the latest job market trends so that they can be prepared to make wise career decisions in 2023.
Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine
On February 24, Vladimir Putin launched what he called “a special military operation” against Ukraine. The goal was to sweep into Kyiv in a matter of days and install a pro-Moscow government. But the initial attack miscarried, and now, more than a month into the war, Ukrainian forces face a brutal Russian assault that has killed tens of thousands on both sides, destroyed civilian infrastructure, sparked Europe’s biggest refugee crisis since World War II, and driven millions out of their homes.
The escalating conflict has triggered historic policy actions and moves across global markets. The ruble has plunged, the stock market has remained closed, oil prices have spiked to record highs, and there is a growing coordinated response to Russia’s aggression by Western governments, businesses, and financial institutions.
Amid this, Ukraine is fighting back with superior US Himars missiles and German Leopard 2 tanks. But its economy is stalling, and it must also contend with the fact that Russian air strikes have indiscriminately targeted hospitals, schools, water treatment plants, and other civilian infrastructure, causing immense suffering for people in cities such as Mariupol and Donetsk.
As the war rages, companies that supply the Ukrainian military have seen their profits plummet. According to Victor Meyer, chief operating officer of Supply Wisdom, which helps companies analyze their supply chains for risk, the impact could extend beyond the military to consumer goods manufacturers and others that use sophisticated components made in Ukraine. The cost of these components, which include electronic warfare detection equipment, is likely to rise as a result. This could affect consumer sentiment as well, spooking families already reeling from skyrocketing energy costs. In addition, a breakdown in Ukrainian production will have far-reaching implications for the region’s technology sector.
China’s Regulatory Environment
China’s economic success in recent decades has been propelled by the country’s lax regulatory environment, technological progress, lifestyle changes and evolving demographics. This growth has pushed new sectors like e-commerce, food delivery and ride hailing to the forefront of the economy, threatening to overwhelm more traditional Chinese businesses like property and financial services. Domestic policymakers have now put their foot firmly on the brake pedal through a series of new regulations designed to rein in these sector’s rapid expansion and guard against systemic risk.
Effective regulation must strike a balance between encouraging innovation and discouraging excessive risk-taking, while simultaneously avoiding fraud that threatens the stability of the economy and financial system. To this end, regulators often rely on flexible implicit rules to complement explicit ones. This often creates ambiguity, which Chinese business culture is quite comfortable with, but it also ensures that government officials can act quickly when they notice misbehavior or potential systemic risk.
The ambiguity in China’s regulations is particularly apparent in the country’s approach to its tech giants. Across the globe, these companies are being scrutinized by government officials for their size, anti-competitive practices and control of consumer data. In China, these concerns are heightened because the government has much greater direct control over companies in its territory.
This means that if there is a problem, China’s government can move faster and more forcefully than in the rest of the world. These unique factors mean that C-suite executives must consider how their company’s long-term strategic goals align with China’s larger ambitions, which seek to balance sustainable economic development, social equality and security. This is important because a company that is unable to align its short-term goals with China’s policies may find itself engulfed in a more aggressive enforcement regime down the road.
Autonomous vehicles are automobiles that don’t need a driver to navigate traffic and reach a destination. They can detect their environment with cameras, sensors and other advanced technology. Many vehicles already have several driver-assistance features that help the driver avoid accidents or deal with road conditions. For example, a blind-spot monitor or emergency braking assistance are common features in cars today. But full-autonomy vehicles are on the horizon.
Car manufacturers are racing to produce fully self-driving vehicles. Ford has said it will offer a level 4 vehicle by 2021 with no gas pedal or steering wheel, and Volvo plans to deliver its first self-driving vehicle in the same year. These vehicles will need to be able to recognize countless objects on the road, including lane dividers that can disappear under snow and tunnels where GPS may not work. They’ll also need to handle complex decisions, such as when to stop to let an emergency vehicle pass.
Despite these challenges, autonomous cars are expected to have a significant impact on the economy. They will reduce traffic congestion, free up commuters’ time to pursue personal and career goals and allow people to work while on the go. Some analysts predict that self-driving cars will eventually make up to 90% of all transportation vehicles.
Another positive economic effect is that people will need less gasoline and other fuels, saving money on their energy bills. This will benefit the environment by reducing greenhouse emissions. And, since less people will be driving to work, it will take pressure off roads and bridges, reducing maintenance costs for the infrastructure. Moreover, the cost of health care will decrease due to fewer medical accidents.
Social media and technology news refer to web-based communication tools that allow users from across the world to connect over shared beliefs, desires or interests. The first social media platforms were bulletin board services like CompuServe and America Online that introduced digital communication in the 1980s and ’90s. With today’s advanced internet networks, a message can go viral and reach millions of people instantly. Social news sites like Reddit are aggregators that let users submit links and text posts for exposure, then vote submissions up or down to affect how prominently the content is displayed. These sites also enable academic research to be shared with a wider audience, and law enforcement to quickly identify criminal suspects.