Re/wind: Mozilla’s Eich Resigns, Microsoft Debuts Cortana, Elon Musk Critiques HBO
In case you missed anything, here’s a quick roundup of some of the news that powered Re/code this week.
- U.S. Supreme Court justices heard arguments on Monday over software patent reform. While the justices mostly steered away from contentious questions that would reveal what their ruling might be, the court’s decision will impact companies like Google and Microsoft that earn revenue from software licensing.
- Brendan Eich, co-founder of Mozilla, resigned as CEO this week after yielding to pressure from gay rights activists and others over his support of California’s Proposition 8 initiative that restricted marriage in the state to heterosexual couples. Eich’s elevation to the top job prompted the resignations of several Mozilla board members who were dissatisfied with the choice.
- With sassy pre-programmed responses and a mobile focus, Cortana is Microsoft’s new automated assistant. Designed to assist Bing users and compete with Apple’s Siri, Cortana will also help users with everyday tasks like sending emails and setting alarms.
- At the premiere of HBO’s new show “Silicon Valley,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk had a bone to pick with series creator Mike Judge’s choices: “The truth? It’s stranger than the fiction. Most startups are a soap opera, but not that kind of soap opera.”
- The latest round of patent battling between Apple and Samsung has turned up an internal Apple document showing that the company’s sales force is worried about the competition.
- A tech shuttle protest took a sickly turn this week when a protester vomited on a Yahoo Bus.
- Looking for a new laptop? You should be if you’re still using Windows XP. Walt Mossberg explained why and evaluated the field in his annual spring laptop buyer’s guide.
- Microsoft is giving away a version of Windows, free, for phones and tablets. Here’s why.
- Bonnie Cha reviewed two speed reading apps, which train users to read faster by displaying one word at a time on your screen.
- And finally, have you heard of Re/watch? It’s the hot new wearable device the Re/code team debuted at our launch party in San Francisco Thursday night.