July 23, 2017

As legal battle with Google continues, Uber threatens to fire its own engineer



Anthony Levandowski in 2011
By shinnygogo [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Two of the biggest names in self-driving vehicles — indeed, two of the biggest names in technology — are embroiled in a massive lawsuit, and the outcome may reshape the burgeoning industry. And as the lawsuit plays out in court, things are getting weird: Uber just strong-armed its own employee.

Here’s everything you need to know. The back story

Waymo — a part of Alphabet, which owns Google — filed suit against Uber back in February, alleging that the ridesharing service stole some of its proprietary autonomous-car tech. Waymo began as Alphabet/Google’s self-driving car project years ago, and was spun off into its own company.

In Waymo v. Uber, the plaintiff claims a former employee named Anthony Levandowski stole proprietary files — 14,000 of them, to be exact — and used them to start a new company. The company in question is Otto, the autonomous-driving tech startup acquired by Uber last August for $680 million. Otto demonstrated a self-driving semi truck late last year.

The lawsuit alleges unfair competition, patent infringement, and trade secret misappropriation. It also claims the allegedly stolen technology earned Otto employees more than $500 million. Waymo asked a federal judge to put an end to its rival’s self-driving […]

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The News for the Gig Economy Staff is constantly searching the web for the latest news regarding freelancing and gig platforms to bring them to you in one handy place. All articles with this generic author have been sourced with the original location at the bottom of the piece. We encourage our readers to view the original source of all excerpts. NGE is a project of ARC Online, LLC.

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