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Re/wind: Our Interview With President Obama, Detroit's Tech Turnaround and More

Oh, and Pinterest is getting ready to beef up its business side.

Vjeran Pavic

Hey there!

A bunch of stuff went down this week in the tech world, and Re/code’s here to fill you in:

  1. On Friday, Re/code co-executive editor Kara Swisher sat down with President Barack Obama to talk about a wide variety of tech-related issues: Hacking, the White House-Silicon Valley relationship, the Apple Watch, Snowden, teaching kids to code and more. You can watch the full interview here.
  2. As part of our Innovation Nation series of multi-part reports about tech in different American cities, Re/code senior editor Liz Gannes visited Detroit to learn more about the startups working to help restore the city to its former glory. She spoke with a billionaire supporting the effort, different startup founders, native Detroiters working in tech and many others. Delve into the whole seven-part series, featuring some top-notch videos and photos from our multimedia team.
  3. Pinterest is getting serious about its business plan: the image-sharing service is getting ready to introduce a “Buy” button sometime this year, and it began a crackdown on power users who make money through affiliate links to online retailers.
  4. This past week marked the tenth anniversary of Google Maps, one of the tech giant’s most successful and popular products. We looked at the history of the early days, from its origins as a “useless project” to the iPhone and Street View and beyond.
  5. On Wednesday at the Women in the World Conference in downtown San Francisco, outgoing Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chair Amy Pascal opened up about the hacks that cost her her job, and how “strangely freeing” the experience was.
  6. Facebook released an update on Thursday allowing users to decide what happens to their profiles when they die, letting you assign a “legacy account” with special, limited access to your own profile in the unfortunate event of your own demise. Before that, on Tuesday, Facebook rolled out another update introducing a message board that makes it easier for people to sell stuff on the social network.
  7. In November, Amazon unveiled a mysterious new product: The Echo Bluetooth speaker, a device that looked part-Jawbone and part-Siri. An all-in-one personal assistant, music player and bedtime companion, “Alexa” is great buy for those who could use a pint-sized cylinder that makes life a bit simpler and isn’t beer.
  8. Microsoft’s new Outlook app for iPhone and Android is really, really good. It lets you move among calendars, contacts and your inbox seamlessly, a surprisingly solid reboot of the Acompli email service that Microsoft purchased for $200 million last year. Speaking of which, Microsoft bought the calendar app maker Sunrise this week, reportedly for the price of $100 million.
  9. Apple is working on a nearly $850 million solar farm in California, which it plans to use to supply power to Apple’s corporate and data centers. In other ambitious Apple projects, word got out about a supposed iCar that Apple’s working on, which makes sense given that cars are the next “smart” technology frontier. And finally, Apple introduced two-factor authentication for the iMessage and FaceTime — a simple but critically important security feature.
  10. Flipboard is a clean, easy-to-use “personal magazine” that makes it really easy to read stuff on mobile and tablet devices. And now it’s on desktop! For free! Rejoice!

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