Google Plans Silicon Valley ‘Hardware Center’; Microsoft Tests Night Mode for Xbox; Biden Targets 52 MPG; Tesla Confirms Cybertruck Delay

Google is apparently planning a second San Jose campus on top of the Downtown West project. 9to5google.com reports that it is being called a ‘hardware center.’ Right now, from what’s known, it will be made up of 3 ‘industrial’ buildings. The planning documents leaked specifically mention ‘Nest’ and ‘Google Hardware.’ One building will apparently be like a huge warehouse, and about 80% will be dedicated to manufacture, storage, and distribution. There will also be a campus next to the hardware center. Five existing buildings Google already owns will be renovated to house some 3,500 Googlers. (The Downtown West site will feature space for up to 20,000 employees.) No projected date was given for completion of the facility. 

Night mode on your computer isn’t enough…now, Microsoft is publicly testing a night mode on Xbox. According to engadget.com, it will not only dim down your screen, but also the power button and controller light! There is an optional blue light filter, too…which can help minimize eye strain. I use computer glasses with a blue filter already, and it does help for the many hours in front of screens. The tests are early Alpha right now, but when night mode comes, it will be welcome…especially for late night gaming sessions. 

In an aggressive move aimed at boosting sales of electric vehicles, and cutting down the pollution from gas and diesel ones that are continuing to accelerate climate change, the Biden administration has now set a target MPG of 52 starting in 2026. Cnet.com says the new regulations replace the Trump administration’s SAFE rules. The rules also call for an 10% post in fleet average MPG by 2023, followed by 5% bumps yearly through 2026. The Trump plan only called for 1.5% increases yearly. Note that some cars can already hit the old Trump standard of 43.3 MPG by 2026. I have a hybrid that averages 43 right now which is 3 years old…it also can hit 53 MPG on the highway if I behave myself (which admittedly is a rare occurrence!)

There has been plenty of speculation that Tesla’s Cybertruck mass production was slipping. Over the weekend, electrek.co noted that now, the official website now has on the order page an updated footnote to confirm that the configurator will be available when “production nears in 2022”. Elon Musk had said that some would be available by the end of 2021, so it’s not a huge delay, but at least now it’s official. In an investor note, Tesla said that production will start after the Model Y production is underway at the new plant in Texas.



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