Morning tech tip sheet: News and events for Wednesday, April 14

What we're following on Wednesday, April 14:

Intel earnings set high bar (Wall St. Journal) - Investors are warmly greeting Wednesday's news that Intel posted its strongest first-quarter growth since its creation in 1968. Many told The Wall Street Journal that the company's recent uptick signals that Silicon Valley writ large might experience similar growth spurts this year, exceeding expectations.

New law turns Web retailers into tax tattlers (CNet) -- States grappling with insurmountable budget gaps are now levying "digital goods" taxes on products purchased on Web sites like, creating headaches for those companies, usually located out of state, and the consumers who are supposed to pay them. The taxes have also triggered privacy concerns, as reporting amounts paid online often forces individuals or companies to note what, exactly, they are purchasing -- a practice that could mean consumers buying medicine for a disease, for example, must inadvertently reveal that disease on a form.

FCC should reassert Web authority, open Net, coalition says (Bloomberg) -- The D.C.-based Open Internet Coalition, led by such companies as Skype, Google and Amazon, called on the FCC this week to "move quickly" to restore its Web regulation powers, more than a week after a federal court ruled it did not have the explicit authority to regulate broadband providers. However, telecommunications companies are already pushing back at that movement, promising legal action against the FCC if the commission tries to expand its authority using its internal, rule-making process.

Tech firms engage K St. ahead of major broadband fight (Hillicon Valley) -- Broadband and Web service companies are beefing up their lobbying forces in Washington as the multibillion-dollar battle over Internet regulations gathers momentum. Big tech firms did not wait for last week’s D.C. Circuit Court decision, which upended the Obama administration’s strategy on “net neutrality” by ruling that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had no right to regulate the Internet. 
Google hired Liberty Partners Group to handle online competition and other tech issues; AT&T hired Prime Policy Group to lobby on broadband and net neutrality; Verizon Communications hired Trammell and Co. to work on wireless and broadband issues.

Tech events around the Beltway:

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) will kick off Wednesday with the release of their latest report, "How Information Technology is Driving the Self-Service Economy." ITIF President Robert D. Atkinson and others will debut their findings during a panel discussion that will focus on "policy implications of self-service technology and steps government can take to harness the benefits of the self-service revolution and its role in a brighter economic future," according to ITIF. Where: ITIF's 1250 I. St. NW headquarters. When: 10 a.m. (Registration required)

The Center for National Policy will later hold its own discussion on "The Private Sector's Role in Cyber Security." The panel includes Douglas Raymond, head of monetization at Google Asia-Pacific; Rob Knake, an international affairs fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations; and Chris Caine of Mercator XXI LLC. The discussion arrives as congressional lawmakers are preparing an onslaught of bills to address the nation's cybersecurity holes and penalize other countries that fail to do the same. Where: CNP, at 1 Mass Ave NW. When: 12 p.m. (Registration required)

The Senate Commerce Committee will take its first crack at the National Broadband Plan on Wednesday afternoon, about two weeks after the first hearing on the subject was unexpectedly canceled. Offering testimony will be FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, who will likely field questions on both the merits of his broadband plan and his commission's ability to carry many of those recommendations out, now that a federal court has ruled the FCC lacks explicit authority to regulate broadband providers. Where: Russell 253. When: 2:30 p.m., available on webcast

Still on deck this week:

McAfee Public Sector Summit
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Tx.), co-founder of Congressional Cyber Security Caucus; Dave DeWalt, CEO of McAfee
When: Thursday, April 15, 8 - 10 a.m.
Where: Ronald Reagan Building and ITC in D.C.

NASA space summit
President Barack Obama addresses audience on 2011 space budget
When: Thursday afternoon
Where: Kennedy Space Center; telecast live

POSTPONED: House Energy and Commerce Committee
Hearing on the National Broadband Plan, "Competitive Availability of Navigation Devices"
When: Thursday, April 15, 10 a.m.
Where: Rayburn 2123
Note: Committee staff announced Tuesday this hearing is now postponed, though they did not cite a reason why. A new date and time will be announced in the coming days.

Additionally: Friday hearing on online gambling before the House Financial Services Committee was canceled, committee staff announced Monday. The hearing will be rescheduled in the coming weeks.