President Donald Trump has nominated longtime telecom lawyer Nathan Simington to be the Federal Communications Commission’s next commissioner, as reported by Law360.
Last week, The Sports Grind Entertainment first reported that Simington had emerged as a leading candidate to replace current Republican Commissioner Mike O’Rielly. Simington, a senior adviser at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), played a significant role in drafting a petition required under the Trump administration’s social media executive order issued over the summer. The order instructs the FCC, after receiving NTIA’s petition, to reinterpret Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
The order was issued in May after Twitter fact-checked two of Trump’s tweets that made false statements about mail-in voting. It is unclear when the FCC intends to roll out a formal notice of proposed rulemaking and vote on the measure.
Simington’s nomination marks a significant break in the Trump administration’s former FCC nominations. Previously, the administration has nominated Republican commissioners in favor of light-touch telecommunications and technology policy. O’Rielly was previously nominated for a third-term by Trump, but his nomination was abruptly withdrawn after he made a speech expressing concerns over the administration’s social media order that would empower the FCC to take a unique role in regulating content moderation on social media platforms.
“As a conservative, I’m troubled voices are stifled by liberal tech leaders,” O’Rielly tweeted in May. “At same time, I’m extremely dedicated to First Amendment which governs much here.”
If Simington’s nomination is approved in the Senate, the FCC would have two Republican commissioners likely in favor of voting to approve the administration’s social media order. Republican Commissioner Brendan Carr penned an op-ed in Newsweek last month arguing that the FCC should require social media platforms to submit transparency reports similar to what internet service providers already do.
In response to the nomination, O’Rielly sent Simington best wishes on Twitter. “I extend my sincere congrats to Mr. Simington for selection to join [the FCC],” O’Rielly wrote, “and offer best wishes for a smooth confirmation process and successful term at the Commission.”
BMW’s motorsport division announces first EV based on the i4
“Next year we will launch the first battery-electric M car in the performance segment, based on the i4, as something to confirm. Then we’re working on hybrid electrified performance and high-performance cars, but it is too early to disclose which ones it is going to be.”
As CarAdvice noted, it likely means that the vehicle will be sportier than the standard i4 but won’t be able to match the division’s “high-performance” models, such as the BMW M3 and M4. Flasch explained that current battery technologies still don’t have the capability to power its high-performance cars and that it will take more time to design one that can. The company still has to figure out a few more things to be able to develop a full-blown M EV, as well: “[T]he biggest question to answer is,” he said, “how to handle weight of a battery electric car and still offer M-specific, or M-style, dynamics.”
The CEO didn’t have a lot of details to share about the car, but if it’s a sportier i4, then we can probably expect better specs than the standard version. BMW previously revealed that the i4 will have a 390 kW motor that can accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in about four seconds. It will have a max speed of 124 miles per hour and an 80 kWh battery that will give it the capability to run for approximately 373 miles on a single charge. The standard i4 is expected to be available in 2022, which means you may have to wait more than a couple of years before the M version comes out.
SpaceX’s reused rockets will carry national security payloads for the first time
There’s clearly a pragmatic incentive to allow reused rockets. The Space Force expects to save $52.7 million for the GPS III missions alone. It might also be difficult to insist on brand new rockets. SpaceX is shifting its focus to Starship, and might not be eager to make more Falcon 9 rockets than necessary.
This also reflects added trust in SpaceX. Although the company has clearly played a crucial role in US government launches through projects like Crew Dragon, the contract represents another level of confidence.
Hyundai’s next electric race car hints at the future of sporty road-going EVs
Hyundai’s electric sports car ambitions didn’t end with a spruced-up Veloster. The automaker has unveiled an RM20e Racing Midship Sports Car that not only promises to boost its motorsport plans, but reflects the “next generation” of N performance cars — it’s billed as the company’s first “high-performance” electric sports car of any kind. It’s powerful, as you’d expect from racing EVs, but Hyundai is also promising a balanced design that could even be ready for the street.
As the name implies, the 810HP motor sits at the middle of the body. That not only lets the RM20e reach 62MPH in less than three seconds and 124MPH in 9.88 seconds, but allows for the traction, balance, and braking you’d hope for in a race car. Even so, the design supposedly offers “daily-driver quietness” and responsiveness.
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