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    German authorities have fined luxury automaker Audi 800 million euros ($925 million) for selling cars with excessive diesel emissions. Prosecutors in Munich said Tuesday that the fine was imposed because Audi neglected its oversight duties in selling cars with engines made by it and group partner Volkswagen that did not conform to legal limits on harmful emissions. The case covered some 4.9 million Audi cars sold in Europe, the U.S. and elsewhere between 2004 and 20018. In September 2015 parent company Volkswagen admitted rigging some 11 million diesel autos with software that enabled them to pass emissions tests even though emissions in real driving were much higher. The prosecutors' statement said the resolution of the case did not affect an investigation of individual Audi executives.
  • Facebook says that anyone who takes out a British political ad on the social media platform will now be forced to reveal their identity, in a bid to increase transparency and curb misinformation. The company said Tuesday that it will also require disclaimers for any British political advertisements, which will be archived for seven years in a publicly accessible database. British lawmakers have called for greater oversight of social media companies and election campaigns to protect democracy in the digital age. A House of Commons report this year said democracy is facing a crisis because data analysis and social media allow campaigns to target voters with messages of hate without their consent. 'While the vast majority of ads on Facebook are run by legitimate organizations, we know that there are bad actors that try to misuse our platform,' Facebook said in a statement. 'By having people verify who they are, we believe it will help prevent abuse.' Facebook said it's up against 'smart and well-funded adversaries who change their tactics as we spot abuse,' but it believes that increased transparency is good for democracy and the electoral process.
  • Energy Secretary Rick Perry's keynote speech at the World Gas Conference in June opened with a marching band and ended with an exhibition by the Harlem Globetrotters. It was a spectacle befitting the industry symposium. 'We're sharing our energy bounty with the world,' Perry gushed from a stage at the Washington Convention Center. Long undervalued, natural gas was once burned off indiscriminately as an unwanted byproduct of oil drilling. But the fuel's fortunes have changed. Cooled to minus 162 degrees Celsius, natural gas condenses into a liquid marketed as a clean alternative to coal. In just three years, the U.S. has emerged as a top producer of liquefied natural gas, or LNG, selling shiploads of the commodity to countries such as China, which are seeking low-carbon energy sources to combat climate change. Natural gas, it turns out, isn't so great for the climate, but that hasn't stopped America from sending its fossil fuels abroad. Since Donald Trump took office in 2017, exports of LNG and crude oil have surged, rivaling the likes of Saudi Arabia and Russia. To achieve what it calls 'energy dominance,' the Trump administration has taken its cues from an unlikely source: its predecessor. When Perry hawked LNG and coal to India in April, he was advancing a dialogue the Department of Energy began under Barack Obama in 2014. Leaked administration plans for a 'central institution' to promote 'clean and advanced fossil fuels' abroad could combine several Obama-era initiatives. Compared to Trump, Obama is regarded as an environmental champion. But history paints a more complicated picture. As the young senator promised 'change we can believe in' during the 2008 presidential campaign, change was also sweeping American oilfields. Advances in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking — a way of recovering oil and gas from tight rock called shale — created a glut. Industry responded by pitching fossil-fuel exports as a 'win-win' that would benefit consumers and enhance American power. Helping to deliver the message was a coalition of White House advisers: academics such as Columbia University's Jason Bordoff, energy gurus such as Daniel Yergin, and national-security experts such as John Deutch — all with links to firms profiting from the boom. Leading the charge within government was then-Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, a nuclear physicist with longstanding ties to the oil and gas industry and an enthusiastic proponent of natural gas. Under his watch, the Energy Department moved swiftly to foster LNG exports in 2013 before shifting its focus to decades-old restrictions on the export of crude oil. Days after the Paris climate agreement was reached in 2015, Obama signed a budget bill to keep the federal government running; slipped inside was a provision allowing crude oil to be sold freely for the first time since 1975. The move was praised by an alliance of 16 companies, most of which are now capitalizing on an export-driven boom in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico. What's good for corporate profits, however, may not be good for the planet. A growing body of research suggests natural gas isn't the climate panacea many promised it would be, with mounting concerns over its main component: methane, a greenhouse gas roughly 86 times more potent in the short term than carbon dioxide. In the race for energy supremacy, the U.S. has become not only the world's largest natural-gas producer but also a top exporter of oil — a fuel that remains among the most harmful for the climate and public health. As energy exports climb, so too does global consumption of fossil fuels, drawing billions in infrastructure investment that — some argue — tilts the world away from renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar. __ This story is part of a collaboration between the Center for Public Integrity, the Texas Tribune, The Associated Press and Newsy. __ 'ALL OF THE ABOVE' As Obama's energy czar, Moniz spearheaded the administration's 'all-of-the-above' policy, which endorsed drilling alongside renewable energy. When he became secretary in 2013, among his top priorities was fast-tracking approvals for natural-gas exports — as advocated by industry lobbying groups such as the American Petroleum Institute. The Trump White House has taken the idea a step further. In August, the Energy Department announced it would automatically approve small-volume exports of LNG. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, a booster of increased drilling on federal lands and offshore, has called America's energy supremacy a moral imperative. Moniz, now in the private sector, has continued to follow an 'all-of-the-above' approach. His Washington office houses his nonprofit think tank, Energy Futures Initiatives, and his for-profit firm, EJM Associates LLC. The two organizations were launched on the same day last year. EJM receives staff and administrative support from EFI. Both share an office with The Scowcroft Group, a consultancy founded by former National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft that specializes in emerging markets like China and whose clients include oil and gas companies. Scowcroft and Moniz aren't just office mates. According to their websites, their for-profit firms are engaged in a three-way partnership with McLarty Associates, a trade consultancy located in the same building. A press release describes EJM as a strategic energy advisor for McLarty Associates clients. Headed by Thomas F. 'Mack' McLarty III, a Clinton White House official and former natural-gas executive, the firm has represented LNG investors Chevron and General Electric. McLarty's lobbying division has advocated for Shell on natural-gas matters and a company behind a pipeline with ties to the Kremlin. Brent Scowcroft and Mack McLarty sit on EFI's advisory board. During a recent interview with the Center for Public Integrity and Newsy, Moniz balked at the suggestion that his ties to the fossil-fuel industry could pose a conflict of interest. He emphasized his climate credentials, saying, 'I have been a champion of renewables for a long, long time.' Responding to follow-up questions, a spokesman wrote in a seven-page statement that Moniz 'has no financial relationships with oil and gas producers,' and that neither EFI nor EJM engages in 'lobbying activities or foreign government representation.' It also said, 'EJM has had no discussions with McLarty on LNG export issues,' but did not include a similar qualification for The Scowcroft Group. 'To date, there are no joint projects with either (Scowcroft or McLarty),' the statement added. Representatives of Scowcroft and McLarty declined to comment. Moniz's oil-and-gas ties go back years. When named energy secretary, he terminated his work as a paid consultant for companies such as BP. At MIT, Moniz ran a think tank, largely funded by the oil and gas industry, which published one of the earliest and most influential reports on natural gas. First publicized in interim form in June 2010, it affirmed the fuel as a 'bridge' to ease the country's transition from coal. The study's major sponsor was the American Clean Skies Foundation, a group created by Aubrey McClendon — then CEO of Chesapeake Energy — as part of a multimillion-dollar effort to market natural gas as a climate solution. Moniz and several co-authors aggressively promoted it. In his statement, Moniz's spokesman said the study has 'stood the test of time' and emphasized Moniz's support for an Obama-era rule that sought to rein in leaks of methane from oil and gas sites. That regulation has become the latest target of the Trump administration. The MIT study was cited in a slew of other reports, including one from an Energy Department committee in 2011. Chairing the committee was John Deutch, a former CIA director and then-board member of Cheniere, a Houston-based company that later became the first to export LNG. Another member, author Daniel Yergin, went on to publish several studies in favor of LNG and crude-oil exports as vice chairman of IHS Markit, an industry consultancy. Yergin sat on the advisory board of Moniz's MIT think tank; Moniz was a private consultant for IHS Markit. Deutch did not respond to requests for comment, but a representative of Yergin's noted that IHS Markit is 'solely responsible' for the contents of its studies, regardless of funding. The studies helped buoy the idea of natural gas as an answer to the planet's climate woes, even though early research hinted that methane could derail that narrative. A 2018 study sponsored by the Environmental Defense Fund — a green group that has partnered with the oil and gas industry to investigate leaks of the greenhouse gas — has only furthered doubts. The study found methane emissions were 60 percent higher than previously estimated. 'If natural gas is a bridge fuel,' said Ramón Alvarez, a co-author and associate chief scientist at EDF, 'methane leaks is a major structural fault in the integrity of that bridge.' To meet the lofty targets outlined in the Paris agreement, it is widely accepted that countries must reach 'zero emissions' by 2050, which means phasing out fossil fuels or developing technologies that make them climate-neutral. Environmentalists argue the expansive buildout of natural-gas infrastructure ensures the fuel's future for decades, jeopardizing the world's chances of avoiding catastrophic warming. __ 'LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD' During a July press conference in England with British Prime Minister Theresa May, Trump struck an upbeat tone. 'We've become an oil exporter, which would not have happened under the past regime or a new regime if it weren't us,' he declared. In fact, America did begin exporting large volumes of crude oil under Obama. He approved a last-minute budget deal to avert a government shutdown in 2015, which also removed restrictions on crude sales for the first time in 40 years. However, the country still imports more crude than it exports — a trend experts believe will continue. Congress had enacted the restrictions as a conservation measure in 1975 following the Arab Oil Embargo, which caused fuel shortages. Under the ban, companies had to refine crude oil into petroleum products such as gasoline or secure special exemptions from the Commerce Department to sell the resource abroad. As was the case with LNG, interest in crude exports soared when fracking took off. With oil production climbing steadily in 2012, American Petroleum Institute President Jack Gerard was among the first to suggest the ban be thrown out. Shortly thereafter, crude-oil exports became a priority for the GOP as well as some Democrats in drilling states. But they became an albatross for the Obama White House. Boosting crude oil — which doesn't have any of LNG's purported climate benefits — would put the administration at odds with its own climate agenda. So, in October 2015, the White House threatened to veto legislation lifting the ban, urging Congress to focus on 'supporting our transition to a low-carbon economy.' Senators Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, responded by mustering congressional support for a provision in that year's budget bill allowing crude-oil exports. By December 2015, the measure was part of a $1.1 trillion spending plan — veto-proof legislation needed to keep the federal government running. In exchange for backing exports, Democrats got five-year extensions on tax credits for wind and solar. 'It didn't strike us as the best deal,' said Ana Unruh Cohen, managing director of government affairs for the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group. Cohen was an aide to Senator Edward Markey, D-Mass., when interest in the ban spiked on Capitol Hill. Markey was the deal's most vocal opponent, calling it a 'Trojan horse' for 'pumping up Big Oil's profits.' Climate change was an afterthought in the debate over the ban, Cohen said. Both sides were fixated on how crude-oil exports would affect energy prices, not greenhouse-gas emissions. And Democrats mistakenly banked on emission-cutting policies such as the Clean Power Plan — one of several Obama-era regulations being tossed out by Trump — to drive investment in renewable energy. Even though the Obama White House publicly discouraged efforts to undo the ban, it ultimately signed off on the deal. Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen's energy program, called it a 'pathetic compromise.' On January 4, 2016, ConocoPhillips — one of 16 companies that collaborated to overturn the ban — became the first to export American crude oil. This summer, the U.S. shattered records by exporting 3 million barrels of crude a day, trailing only Saudi Arabia and Iraq. In a written statement, Heitkamp said crude-oil exports have allowed the U.S. to 'level the playing field in the global energy market.' Obama representatives did not respond to requests for comment. Moniz was among the first Obama administration officials to publicly question the ban, at an industry conference in December 2013. In the interview with the Center and Newsy, Moniz said his remarks reflected 'proper policy,' not energy-industry lobbying. Barriers to exports already had been eroding behind the scenes. In September 2013, the Commerce Department issued a confidential ruling allowing Houston-based Peaker Energy to export condensate, a barely processed, ultralight oil hard to distinguish from crude. The agency granted approvals to two more companies in March 2014.The rulings — which didn't become public knowledge until months after they were issued — triggered speculation by an energy expert that Commerce was taking a 'baby step' toward lifting the ban. At the same time, a flurry of white papers promised crude-oil exports would not only lower energy prices but also give America an edge over energy titans such as Russia. One study from IHS Markit argued that reversing the ban would resolve a dilemma created by the fracking boom, which had flooded the market with a lighter type of crude that couldn't be easily processed by most U.S. refineries. Co-authored by Yergin, that report was funded by 20 oil and gas companies. Industry was also marshaling forces to overturn the ban. Producers for American Crude Oil Exports, or PACE, debuted in October 2014 as a coalition of 16 companies dedicated to reversing the 'outdated policy in a new era of U.S. energy abundance.' At least 14 of these companies were active last year in the Permian Basin, where exports have taken drilling to new heights. The Permian boom is expected to accelerate, worsening air quality and driving up water use in a region prone to drought. Some of the same PACE companies fund Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy, a think tank founded in 2013 by former Obama energy and climate advisor Jason Bordoff, who has argued in favor of both LNG and crude-oil exports as a way to spur job growth and keep America competitive. Of the 48 sponsors listed on the center's website, at least 29 have direct ties to the oil and gas industry. The center's board includes current and former executives from ConocoPhillips; Yergin; Chinese oil tycoon Fu Chengyu; and Charif Souki, co-founder of Cheniere and Tellurian. Only a handful of donors appear to be focused on climate change and renewable energy. The center declined to make Bordoff available for an interview. A Columbia spokesman wrote that the center's work has focused on 'how the reduction of fossil fuel use and the growth of clean energy sources are necessary to address the urgent challenge of climate change. The suggestion that some contributions from commercial entities or any other source have affected the independence of (the center's) policy analysis is false.' Bordoff has been a frequent critic of the Trump administration for its rollbacks of environmental regulations. But he's continued to advocate for LNG exports, aligning himself with free-market diehards like Perry. Slocum, of Public Citizen, said Trump administration officials are merely capitalizing on choices made years earlier that breathed new life into 'vested fossil-fuel interests.' 'That's what folks in the Obama administration never really understood — that the decision they were making has implications for one or two generations,' Slocum said. 'That's the shortsightedness of this entire hysteria to promote exports.
  • Global credit card and payments companies like American Express, Visa and MasterCard are facing a challenge in meeting a requirement to store transaction data for all Indian customers within the country. A new rule took effect Tuesday that directs payment companies to store all transaction data on computers within the country. Enacted in April by the Reserve Bank of India, the law gave payment companies six months to ensure transaction data of Indian customers was kept within the country to 'ensure better monitoring' and 'unfettered supervisory access to data.' However, the directive clarified that data for foreign parts of such transactions can be stored outside India. It was unclear if foreign payment vendors like American Express, Visa and MasterCard had met the deadline or if India's central bank would take any immediate action for non-compliance. Reserve Bank of India officials would not comment. Press Trust of India news agency reported that some global financial technology had companies sought an extension to the deadline, although most have complied. India has a competitive market for payments and the new rules have been welcomed by domestic companies like Paytm. A local payments system, called the Unified Payments Interface, accounts for nearly half the value of credit and debit card transactions in the country. Regulators are striving to use such tools to help bring more Indian citizens, who traditionally have mostly bought and sold things using cash, into the formal, online economy.
  • Investors have reacted with calm to the new Italian budget draft that delivers on electoral promises to restore pensions to thousands whose retirement age had been pushed back and the creation of a basic salary for some job-seekers. The difference between Germany's 10-year bond and Italy's equivalent remained stable Tuesday at a little more than three percentage points, hours after the populist government agreed on the budget plan. The so-called spread is an indicator of investor concern. Italian leaders say the budget plan will boost growth through higher spending. However, other European Union countries have raised concerns that the increase in Italy's budget deficit to 2.4 percent of the country's annual GDP will increase debts. Italy's economy minister, Giovanni Tria, said the budget 'would not make Europe fall apart.
  • Asian markets were mostly higher on Tuesday, though Chinese benchmarks fell after the government reported inflation rose for a fourth straight month. Hopes that President Donald Trump may meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the Group of 20 summit in November lifted sentiment. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 jumped 1.3 percent to 22,549.24. The Kospi in South Korea was flat at 2,145.12. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index, which has fallen 22 percent since early January, was almost unchanged at 25,437.20. The Shanghai Composite dropped 0.9 percent to 2,546.33. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.6 percent to 5,869.90. Shares rose in Taiwan, Indonesia and Thailand but fell in Singapore. WALL STREET: Technology companies skidded and misses in corporate earnings pulled most U.S. indexes lower for the seventh time in eight days. The S&P 500 index dropped 0.6 percent to 2,750.79. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.4 percent to 25,250.55, and the Nasdaq composite skidded 0.9 percent to 7,430.74. But the Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks was 0.4 percent higher at 1,553.09. CHINESE INFLATION: The National Bureau of Statistics said China's consumer price index gained 2.5 percent in September from a year earlier, supported largely by fresh food prices and in line with market expectations. This follows a 2.3 percent increase in August. The country's producer price index gained 3.6 percent from a year earlier, slowing from the previous month. Rising inflation is a double-edged sword. The central bank has tended to shrug off rising prices, but the trend could limit its room for loosening monetary policy in coming months. ANALYST'S TAKE: 'There's a calming of the markets. This is not an all-clear but a consolidation at lower levels,' Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney, said in an interview. 'News that President Trump and Xi may meet at the G-20 summit has added to optimism that the trade dispute between the U.S. and China could be resolved,' he added. ENERGY: U.S. benchmark crude oil lost 4 cents to $71.74 per barrel. The contract rose 0.6 percent to close at $71.78 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, gave up 32 cents to $80.46. It gained 0.4 percent to $80.78 in London. CURRENCIES: The dollar strengthened to 112.14 yen from 111.78 yen late Monday. The euro eased to $1.1596 from $1.1580.
  • With three weeks to go until the midterm elections, Democrats lead Republicans in the money race in many of the key congressional campaigns. The latest campaign finance disclosers indicate that while the Senate map positions Republicans to maintain their narrow majority, some of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents continued to rake in cash in the third quarter of 2018. Among House candidates, the Democrats' campaign arm says that at least 60 Democrats topped $1 million in fundraising during the quarter, with several posting eye-popping hauls in excess of $2 million and even $3 million. And national Democrats say that includes many challengers outraising Republican incumbents. The deadline to file the latest fundraising reports with the Federal Election Commission was midnight.
  • California utilities were restoring electricity after intentionally cutting it to tens of thousands of people because of extreme fire danger but high winds projected to sweep the area into Tuesday morning could see more outages. Winds strong enough to topple trees and down power lines killed one woman Monday and brought a renewed threat of fire to parched California scant months after wildfires devastated the north. In an unprecedented move, Pacific Gas & Electric company began cutting power Sunday night in Northern California. About 60,000 customers were affected. The utility expected to have about 70 percent of them back in service before dawn Tuesday. However, the National Weather Service issued an advisory that winds gusting up to 50 mph (81 kph) at times would continue over foothill and mountain areas east and north of Sacramento, including the Sierras, Shasta County and other rural areas. Pacific Gas & Electric previously announced its plan to shut off power preemptively after authorities blamed its power lines for sparking some of California's most destructive wildfires. The utility expects to pay billions of dollars in wildfire damages and has sought ways to limit its liability through the courts and Legislature. In the south, San Diego Gas & Electric turned off the juice Monday morning to more than 300 customers in foothill areas near Cleveland National Forest, where multiple blazes have scorched large swaths of land in recent years. Electricity was restored by evening after crews had checked out the lines. 'We have contract firefighters with them at the same time. If they determine that the lines are clear, then we turn the power back on,' spokeswoman Colleen Windsor said. 'There's a possibility' of more safety shutdowns depending on the wind, she added. The weather service predicted gusty winds continuing into Tuesday from Santa Barbara southward. Gusts of up to 45 mph in valleys, canyons and foothills were expected from the fall Santa Anas, which are hot, sustained winds that blow out of the state's desert-like region in the east to the ocean. Southern California Edison hadn't intentionally cut power for safety reasons but spokeswoman Susan Cox said more than 27,000 customers remained without power late Monday night. The utility warned some parts of its vast territory that there would still be a chance of a safety shutdown if necessary. Only one death was attributed to the winds. Dennet O. Bermas, 34, of Tustin was killed Monday when a 40-foot (12-meter) eucalyptus tree toppled onto her car as she was pulling out of her apartment carport, authorities said. 'I saw the car crushed,' neighbor Danny McCabe told KCAL-TV. 'I checked for a pulse in her throat and I couldn't feel any.
  • Personal computers, conservation, pro football, rock n' roll and rocket ships: Paul G. Allen couldn't have asked for a better way to spend, invest and donate the billions he reaped from co-founding Microsoft with childhood friend Bill Gates. Allen used the fortune he made from Microsoft — whose Windows operating system is found on most of the world's desktop computers — to invest in other ambitions, from tackling climate change and advancing brain research to finding innovative solutions to solve some of the world's biggest challenges. 'If it has the potential to do good, then we should do it,' Gates quoted his friend as saying. Allen died Monday in Seattle from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, according to his company Vulcan Inc. He was 65. Just two weeks ago, Allen, who owned the NFL's Seattle Seahawks and the NBA's Portland Trail Blazers, had announced that the same cancer he had in 2009 had returned. Gates, who met Allen at a private school in Seattle, said he was heartbroken to have lost one of his 'oldest and dearest friends.' 'Personal computing would not have existed without him,' Gates said in a statement, adding that Allen's 'second act' as a philanthropist was 'focused on improving people's lives and strengthening communities in Seattle and around the world.' Over his lifetime, Allen gave more than $2 billion to efforts aimed at improving education, science, technology, conservation and communities. 'Those fortunate to achieve great wealth should put it to work for the good of humanity,' Allen wrote several years ago, when he announced that he was giving the bulk of his fortune to charity. He said that pledge 'reminds us all that our net worth is ultimately defined not by dollars but rather by how well we serve others.' Allen, who played guitar, built a gleaming pop culture museum in his hometown to showcase his love of rock n' roll, and funded underwater expeditions that made important shipwreck discoveries, including a U.S. aircraft carrier lost during World War II. Yet in a sense, Allen also lived up to the moniker once bestowed on him by Wired Magazine: 'The Accidental Zillionaire .' He was a programmer who coined Microsoft's name and made important contributions to its early success, yet was overshadowed by his partner's acerbic intellect and cutthroat business sense. At the company's founding, for instance, Allen let Gates talk him into taking the short end of a 60-40 ownership split. A few years later, he settled for an even smaller share, 36 percent, at Gates' insistence. Reflecting on that moment In his memoir, Allen concluded that he might have haggled more, but realized that 'my heart wasn't in it. So I agreed.' Allen was born in Seattle. After graduating from the city's private Lakeside School, where he met Gates, Allen spent two years at Washington State University. The two friends both dropped out of college to pursue the future they envisioned: A world with a computer in every home. 'There would be no Microsoft as we know it without Paul Allen,' said longtime technology analyst Rob Enderle, who also consulted for Allen. Allen and Gates founded Microsoft in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and their first product was a computer language for the Altair hobby-kit personal computer, giving hobbyists a basic way to program and operate the machine. After Gates and Allen found some success selling their programming language, MS-Basic, the Seattle natives moved their business in 1979 to Bellevue, Washington, not far from its eventual home in Redmond. Microsoft's big break came in 1980, when IBM Corp. decided to move into personal computers and asked Microsoft to provide the operating system. Gates and Allen agreed, even though they didn't have one to offer. To meet IBM's needs, they spent $50,000 to buy an operating system called QDOS from another startup in Seattle — without, of course, letting on that they had IBM lined up as a customer. Eventually, the product refined by Microsoft became the core of IBM PCs and their clones, catapulting Microsoft into its dominant position in the PC industry. The first versions of two classic Microsoft products, Microsoft Word and the Windows operating system, were released in 1983. By 1991, Microsoft's operating systems were used by 93 percent of the world's personal computers. Allen served as Microsoft's executive vice president of research and new product development until 1983, when he resigned after being diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease. But Allen left Microsoft knowing he and Gates would be forever linked in the history of technology. 'We were extraordinary partners,' Allen wrote. 'Despite our differences, few co-founders had shared such a unified vision — maybe Hewlett and Packard and Google's Sergey Brin and Larry Page, but it was a short list.' After leaving Microsoft, Allen would remain interested in technology, especially the field of artificial intelligence, which recalled first piquing his interest while he was still a teenager after reading 'I, Robot,' a science fiction book by Isaac Asimov. 'From my youth, I'd never stopped thinking in the future tense,' Allen wrote in his 2011 memoir, 'Idea Man.' With his sister Jody Allen in 1986, Allen founded Vulcan, which oversees his business and philanthropic efforts. He founded the Allen Institute for Brain Science and the aerospace firm Stratolaunch, which has built a colossal airplane designed to launch satellites into orbit. He has also backed research into nuclear-fusion power and scores of technology startups. Allen also funded maverick aerospace designer Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne, which in 2004 became the first privately developed manned spacecraft to reach space.  The SpaceShipOne technology was licensed by Sir Richard Branson for Virgin Galactic, which is testing a successor design to carry tourists on brief hops into lower regions of space. Yet Allen never came close to replicating Microsoft's success. What he always seemed to lack, Enderle said, was another Bill Gates to help fulfill his visions. 'He was a decent engineer who got the timing on an idea right once in his life, and it was a big one,' Enderle said. When Allen released his memoir, he allowed '60 Minutes' inside his home on Lake Washington, across the water from Seattle, revealing collections that ranged from the guitar Jimi Hendrix played at Woodstock to vintage war planes and a 300-foot yacht with its own submarine. 'My brother was a remarkable individual on every level,' his sister Jody Allen said in a statement. 'Paul's family and friends were blessed to experience his wit, warmth, his generosity and deep concern,' she added. Paul Allen's influence is firmly imprinted on the cultural landscape of Seattle and the Pacific Northwest, from the bright metallic Museum of Pop Culture designed by architect Frank Gehry to the computer science center at the University of Washington that bears his name. In 1988 at 35, he bought the Portland Trail Blazers professional basketball team. He told The Associated Press that 'for a true fan of the game, this is a dream come true.' He also was a part owner of the Seattle Sounders FC, a major league soccer team, and bought the Seattle Seahawks. Allen could sometimes be seen at games or chatting in the locker room with players. ___ Associated Press writers Michael Liedtke in San Francisco and Lisa Baumann in Seattle contributed to this report.
  • Paul G. Allen, who co-founded Microsoft with his childhood friend Bill Gates before becoming a billionaire philanthropist, technology investor and owner of several professional sports teams, has died. He was 65. He died Monday in Seattle, according to his company Vulcan Inc. Earlier this month Allen announced that the non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that he was treated for in 2009 had returned and he planned to fight it aggressively. Gates said he was heartbroken about the loss of one of his 'oldest and dearest friends.' 'Personal computing would not have existed without him,' Gates said in a statement, adding that Allen's 'second act' as a philanthropist was 'focused on improving people's lives and strengthening communities in Seattle and around the world.' Allen and Gates met while attending a private school in north Seattle. The two friends would later drop out of college to pursue the future they envisioned: A world with a computer in every home. Gates so strongly believed in their dream that he left Harvard University in his junior year to devote himself full-time to his and Allen's startup, which Allen dubbed Micro-Soft, short for microprocessors and software. Allen spent two years at Washington State University before dropping out as well. They founded the company in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and their first product was a computer language for the Altair hobby-kit personal computer, giving hobbyists a basic way to program and operate the machine. After Gates and Allen found some success selling their programming language, MS-Basic, the Seattle natives moved their business in 1979 to Bellevue, Washington, not far from its eventual home in Redmond. Microsoft's big break came in 1980, when IBM Corp. decided to move into personal computers and asked Microsoft to provide the operating system. Gates and company didn't invent the operating system. To meet IBM's needs, they spent $50,000 to buy one known as QDOS from another programmer, Tim Paterson. Eventually the product refined by Microsoft — and renamed DOS, for Disk Operating System — became the core of IBM PCs and their clones, catapulting Microsoft into its dominant position in the PC industry. The first versions of two classic Microsoft products, Microsoft Word and the Windows operating system, were released in 1983. By 1991, Microsoft's operating systems were used by 93 percent of the world's personal computers. The Windows operating system is now used on most of the world's desktop computers, and Word is the cornerstone of the company's prevalent Office products. Allen, however, departed the company just eight years after its founding in 1975. He served as Microsoft's executive vice president of research and new product development until 1983, when he resigned after being diagnosed with cancer. 'To be 30 years old and have that kind of shock — to face your mortality — really makes you feel like you should do some of the things that you haven't done yet,' Allen said in a 2000 book, 'Inside Out: Microsoft in Our Own Words.' Two weeks ago, Allen announced that a different cancer — non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, which he was treated for in 2009 — had returned. Over the course of several decades, Allen gave more than $2 billion to a wide range of interests, including ocean health, homelessness and advancing scientific research. With his sister Jody Allen in 1986, Paul Allen founded Vulcan, the investment firm that oversees his business and philanthropic efforts. 'Millions of people were touched by his generosity, his persistence in pursuit of a better world, and his drive to accomplish as much as he could with the time and resources at his disposal,' Vulcan CEO Bill Hilf said in a statement. Allen was on the list of America's wealthiest people who pledged to give away the bulk of their fortunes to charity. 'Those fortunate to achieve great wealth should put it to work for the good of humanity,' he said. His influence is firmly imprinted on the cultural landscape of Seattle and the Pacific Northwest, from the bright metallic Museum of Pop Culture designed by architect Frank Gehry to the computer science center at the University of Washington that bears his name. He founded the Allen Institute for Brain Science and the aerospace firm Stratolaunch, which has built a colossal airplane designed to launch satellites into orbit. He has also backed research into nuclear-fusion power. 'My brother was a remarkable individual on every level,' his sister Jody Allen said in a statement. 'Paul's family and friends were blessed to experience his wit, warmth, his generosity and deep concern.' Allen also funded maverick aerospace designer Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne, which in 2004 became the first privately developed manned spacecraft to reach space. The SpaceShipOne technology was licensed by Sir Richard Branson for Virgin Galactic, which is testing a successor design to carry tourists on brief hops into lower regions of space. Branson tweeted Monday: 'So sad to hear about the passing of Paul Allen. Among many other things he was a pioneer of commercial space travel. We shared a belief that by exploring space in new ways we can improve life on Earth.' Allen was also an avid sports fan and used some of his fortune to buy several professional teams. In 1988 at 35, he bought the Portland Trail Blazers and told The Associated Press that 'for a true fan of the game, this is a dream come true.' He also was a part owner of the Seattle Sounders FC, a major league soccer team, and bought the Seattle Seahawks. Allen could sometimes be seen at games or chatting in the locker room with players. When he released his 2011 memoir, 'Idea Man,' he allowed 60 Minutes inside his home on Lake Washington, across the water from Seattle, revealing collections that ranged from the guitar Jimi Hendrix played at Woodstock to vintage war planes and a 300-foot yacht with its own submarine.

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  • A former college football standout who briefly signed with the Atlanta Falcons was arrested Saturday by police in Columbus, Georgia, for allegedly having sex with a 12-year-old girl, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reported. Justin Crawford, 23, who played running back at Georgia's Hardaway High School and West Virginia University, faces charges of incest, sodomy and enticing a child for indecent purposes, according to Muscogee County Jail records. At a preliminary hearing on Monday, Columbus Detective Mark Scruggs said Crawford’s wife, Chakeya, woke up Saturday around 5 a.m. and walked into her living room to find her husband with an erection as he stood over the child, the newspaper reported. However, she told the Ledger-Enquirer she objected to Scruggs’ account, saying her husband’s penis was exposed but not erect. She said she confronted her husband about it, that he denied any wrongdoing and she decided to go back to bed. >> Read more news stories  She took the 12-year-old to the child’s mother later, and that’s when the girl said she had been asleep in the living room when Crawford came in and had her perform oral sex on him before they had intercourse, Scruggs said. The newspaper reported that Scruggs said Crawford initially denied any sexual contact with the girl to police, but he later admitted to having oral sex and intercourse with her but claimed it was her idea. Crawford remains in the Muscogee County Jail without bond, according to jail records. As a senior in high school, Crawford rushed for 825 yards and seven touchdowns, the Ledger-Enquirer reported. He spent two years at Northwest Mississippi Community College, where he rushed for over 3,000 yards and six touchdowns, putting him in the national spotlight. He then transferred to West Virginia, where he rushed for 2,237 yards and 11 touchdowns over two seasons. Crawford signed with the Falcons as an undrafted free agent on May 1, but he was among 36 players released in September during the preseason. He was on the roster for the Atlanta Legends in the new Alliance of American Football league but was suspended by the team after being arrested, according to The Associated Press.
  • A Georgia man is in jail on assault and battery charges after he allegedly stabbed his father and punched his ex-girlfriend in the face, police said. Jonathan Allen Fain, 25, of Gwinnett County, has been charged with aggravated assault, aggravated battery, battery and possession of a firearm or knife during the commission of a felony. >> On AJC.com: Georgia man accused of taking, posting pictures of sleeping girls in underwear Fain got his ex-girlfriend to give him a ride to the Walmart on Rockbridge Road the morning of Oct. 11, according to a police report. He began yelling at her that she was taking too long shopping while they were inside, and the yelling continued while she was driving him home, the report said. She told him to get out of the car, but he wouldn’t, so she threw his wallet out the window, according to police. Fain punched the woman in the face and exited the car to get his wallet; the woman took that opportunity to drive away, the report said. Soon after, Fain arrived at his father’s house in Lilburn. They got into an argument, and at some point, Fain stabbed his father, according to the police report. When an officer arrived around 11 a.m., Fain had fled on foot into some nearby woods, the report said. Fain’s father was lying on the ground with a stab wound to his stomach. The officer found a kitchen knife with its blade missing; the blade had broken off and was still inside Fain’s father, the report said.  >> Read more trending news  Shortly after, Fain reportedly returned to the house, entering the basement. Fain surrendered when officers entered the basement and was arrested, the report said. The father was transported to a hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening, according to the report. Fain was taken to the Gwinnett County Detention Center, where he is being held without bond. 
  • Update 9:45 p.m. EDT Oct. 15: President Donald Trump responded to Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) announcement Monday that a DNA analysis proves she has Native American ancestry. >> Read more trending news  Trump has often taunted and mocked Warren using the term “Pocahantas” and has accused her of claiming a Native American ancestor to gain an advantage as a law professor. He vowed to contribute $1 million to her favorite charity if DNA analysis actually proved she had native ancestry. He changed his mind while touring storm-damaged areas in Georgia, telling reporters he initially offered the donation only if she agreed to a DNA test during a debate as the Democrat’s nominee for president. “I’ll only do it if I can test her personally, and that will not be something I will enjoy doing either,” he said, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.  Also Monday, the Cherokee Nation offered a rare rebuke of Warren. 'Using a DNA test to lay claim to any connection to the Cherokee Nation or any tribal nation, even vaguely, is inappropriate and wrong,' the tribe’s secretary of state, Chuck Hoskin Jr., said in a statement, according to OKNews.com. 'It makes a mockery out of DNA tests and its legitimate uses while also dishonoring legitimate tribal governments and their citizens, whose ancestors are well documented and whose heritage is proven,” Hoskin said. Warren said earlier in the day that when “someone brings up my family story, I’ll use it to lift up the story of Native families and communities.” She said it’s an opportunity to highlight the work of the National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center (NIWRC). “I'll use it today to lift up the NIWRC and their amazing work to protect Native women from violence,” she said. Original story: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has released an analysis of her DNA showing that she has Native American ancestry. An analysis of Warren's DNA sample showed she had a Native American ancestor in her family dating back six to 10 generations, according to WFXT. The release of the analysis comes after President Donald Trump has mocked her repeatedly for her claim that she has Native American blood, and repeatedly questioned her ancestry. >> Read more trending news  A Stanford professor, Carlos D. Bustamante, who was awarded a MacArthur genius grant for his work tracking population migration via DNA, performed the analysis of the DNA. His report says the majority of Warren's ancestry is European, but there is strong evidence to suggest that she has a Native American ancestor. Warren's office also released a video to YouTube, 'Elizabeth Warren's family story,' which directly addresses the attacks on her heritage by the President and includes interviews with her family. A 'Fact Squad' website with links to the DNA report and supporting documents was also launched. >> Watch the video here Last month, Warren spoke about her future during a town hall in western Massachusetts on Sept. 30. She said she'll take a 'hard look at running for president' after the November elections. Warren, a frequent critic of President Donald Trump, is running for re-election in November against GOP state Rep. Geoff Diehl, who was co-chairman of Trump's 2016 Massachusetts campaign. She has been at the center of speculation that she might take on Trump in 2020.
  • President Donald Trump and first lady, Melania, arrived at Robbins Air Force Base in Georgia Monday afternoon aboard Air Force One. >> Read more trending news  The first couple toured areas impacted by Hurricane Michael after first visiting the devastation in the Florida Panhandle. The hurricane killed at least 18 people, knocked out power to millions, left a trail of destruction through four states and decimated Georgia’s agricultural industry. During his first stop in Georgia at a Red Cross facility, the president said he would ask Congress for additional disaster aid funding.  When he was asked about climate change and if he ever thought weather would occupy so much of his time during his presidency, he responded: “Weather has been a factor and yet, they say [the] worst hurricanes were 50 years ago. “For a long period of time, we’ve had very few,” he said, according to reporters traveling with the president. “I have a home in Palm Beach Florida and frankly for years, we had none and then, the last couple of years we had more. Hopefully, we’ll go back to many years of having none. We’ve been hit by the weather, there is no doubt about it.”  >> Related: Photos: Trumps tour hurricane-ravaged Florida Panhandle  Gov. Nathan Deal greeted Trump at Robins. And U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, a former Georgia governor, and Brock Long, the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, accompanied Trump.  Trump also weighed in on several other issues during his stop in Georgia, including the disappearance of a dissident Saudi journalist in Turkey. Trump said a lot of people in his administration are working on the case involving Jamal Khashoggi, the missing columnist for The Washington Post. He added he is sending Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to meet with Saudi King Salman about it. The president called the nation’s immigration laws the “dumbest in the history...and we are getting them changed one by one.” Further, he responded to the news that U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren had released the results of a DNA test that she said indicated she had Native American ancestry. In releasing the results, the Massachusetts Democrat was responding to taunts from Trump and others, who have mocked her as “Pocahontas” and claimed she used her heritage to gain an advantage when she was a law professor. Trump had vowed to contribute $1 million to Warren’s favorite charity if she took a DNA test and it showed she had Native American roots. “I’ll only do it if I can test her personally, and that will not be something I will enjoy doing either,” he said in Georgia Monday. >> Related: Hurricane Michael aftermath: Waffle House opens food truck in Panama City  Trump left the Red Cross building to visit a local farm, where he planned to meet cotton and pecan growers who have suffered storm-related losses.  On Sunday, Trump issued a disaster declaration for Georgia and ordered federal aid for parts of the Peach State affected by the storm. The president's decision makes federal funding available to people in Baker, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Miller, and Seminole counties. That funding can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs. Federal funding will also be made available to state and local government agencies and nonprofit groups on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work in the the following counties: Baker, Bleckley, Burke, Calhoun, Colquitt, Crisp, Decatur, Dodge, Dooly, Dougherty, Early, Emanuel, Grady, Houston, Jefferson, Jenkins, Johnson, Laurens, Lee, Macon, Miller, Mitchell, Pulaski, Seminole, Sumter, Terrell, Thomas, Treutlen, Turner, Wilcox, and Worth. Georgia residents and business owners can begin applying Monday for assistance by registering at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362.  More: President Trump issues disaster declaration for Georgia, orders federal aid for Peach State  The president stopped in Georgia after surveying hurricane damage in Lynn Haven, Fla., where volunteers were registering storm victims.  “These are some of the people who make it work, and they do it beautifully,” Trump said, according to reporters traveling with the president.  “Somebody said it was like a very wide, extremely wide, tornado,” Trump said, standing next to Florida Gov. Rick Scott. “This was beyond any winds they’ve seen for — I guess — 50 years. Nobody has seen anything like it.”  Scott thanked Trump for the federal response.  “I want to thank the president for always taking my call — and for showing up. And I want to thank the First Lady,” he said.  Georgia Power said that as of noon Monday it had restored power to 97 percent of its customers impacted by the storm.  Candace Reese, spokeswoman for Dougherty County, said Sunday that about 14,000 people were without power in the Albany area but officials expected power to be back by midweek. Churches and Tyson Foods were offering hot meals as 10 extra chainsaw crews headed down to cut the city out from under the many trees that fell. Phil Buckhalter, an Early County farmer near the Alabama border, said Saturday that conditions were getting worse and would continue that way, with farmers and residents alike running out of gas to power generators. With no clear answer to when power will return, Buckhalter and other farmers have been sharing the precious fuel they have on their farms with desperate residents, who don’t have the means to get their own. The farmers want to help less fortunate residents who aren’t as well off, and certainly not after an unprecedented hurricane.  But that means the farmers can’t use the gas to power machinery for saving the few crops they have left in their battered, soggy fields.  “It’ll run out directly,” Buckhalter said.  Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black said his office is scrambling to get generators up and running and to reopen sites where peanuts can be graded and dried. “One of the things we are working on right now is bringing things back on line,” he said as he awaited Trump in Macon. “There are so many places and people that are still without power. And our team has been working together on some of those priority places to get plants back open.” >> Related: Hurricane Michael: Neighbors come together to donate supplies for hurricane victims The hurricane has also whipped up the race for Georgia governor. Republican Brian Kemp traveled to southwest Georgia on Saturday to help local officials prepare for the start of early voting and returned to the area on Monday. His campaign organized a disaster relief drive and briefed supporters from a distribution center in Bainbridge.  “The response on the ground, while there is much to do, has been unbelievable from the federal, state and friends and neighbors who are helping men and women indeed,” Kemp said. “It makes you proud to be in Georgia.”  His rival, Democrat Stacey Abrams, ticked through the spate of hurricanes that ravaged her hometown of Gulfport, Miss., to a crowd in Macon as she outlined how she would handle disaster recovery if elected.  “It’s about immediate response and also about long-term planning,” she said. “And I’m running for governor because I believe in making sure that we have a leader who sees these communities not only in the moment of devastation and the immediate aftermath, but a year out when folks have walked away and supplies have dwindled. “  The New York Times, the Associated Press, The Washington Post and AJC staff writers Ben Brasch, Greg Bluestein and Joshua Sharpe contributed to this report.

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