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Recode Daily: Silicon Valley’s campaign cash donors who matter

Plus, Apple is ending its drought of new Mac computers; LinkedIn will allow researchers to mine its vast trove of data; the surprise hit of summer 2018 is from the 1980s by way of the ’90s.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos poses on the red carpet with his parents, Jackie and Mike Bezos
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, center, poses on the red carpet with his parents, Jackie and Mike Bezos, for the Smithsonian Magazine’s 2016 American Ingenuity Awards.
Molly Riley / AFP / Getty Images

Tech resistance to U.S. President Donald Trump has reached its zenith. But the universe of Silicon Valley Democrats who are willing to cut seven-figure checks to liberal causes is still very small. In advance of November’s U.S. midterm elections, here’s a cheat sheet. Recode’s list of the top money players includes Ron Conway, founder of SV Angel and one of Silicon Valley’s most prominent seed-stage venture capital firms; Reid Hoffman, the co-founder and former CEO of LinkedIn, and a senior investor at Greylock Partners; and Mike and Jackie Bezos, early Amazon investors and parents of the world’s wealthiest person, Jeff Bezos. [Theodore Schleifer / Recode]

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Apple is planning a new low-cost MacBook laptop with a higher-resolution 13-inch “Retina” display and a pro-focused upgrade to its Mac mini desktop for later this year. Apple reported 3.7 million Mac shipments last quarter, its lowest since 2010. Apple is also reportedly planning to debut three new iPhones, Apple Watches with larger screens and new iPad Pros this year. [Mark Gurman and Debby Wu / Bloomberg]

The claim that Google tracks the movements of millions of iPhone and Android phone users against their wishes, even after they’ve turned off the “Location History” feature on their phones, is now the subject of a class-action lawsuit “seeking unspecified damages for Google’s alleged intentional violations of California privacy laws, and intrusion into people’s private affairs.” [Jonathan Stemple / Reuters]

LinkedIn will begin allowing economics researchers to mine data from its vast trove of personal and professional information. Chief data officer Igor Perisic said the Microsoft-owned company is putting controls in place to protect user privacy, and will only allow approved researchers to view aggregate, anonymized data. [Jeremy Kahn / Bloomberg]

Led by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, several of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges have joined a self-regulatory effort to root out bad behavior in the $214 billion industry. The Virtual Commodity Association is meant to develop industry standards, promote transparency and work with regulators to prevent fraud and manipulation in markets for digital assets such as bitcoin and Ether; exchange participants include Bitstamp, BitFlyer USA and Bittrex. [Matthew Leising / Bloomberg]

A $29 billion battle is being waged on the internet to become America’s mattress of choice. Casper is scaling fast, with $239.5 million in VC funding; startups Purple, Eight and Tuft & Needle are on its heels. Older online mattress players Saatva and Amerisleep believe there is value in slower, self-funded growth. Who will win the race to own how America sleeps? [Elizabeth Segran / Fast Company]

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This is cool

The surprise hit of summer 2018 is a song from the 1980s resurrected by a band from the 1990s.

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