Uber’s head of communications, Andrew Noyes, has left the company

Sharp eyes at Valleywag noted Wednesday that Andrew Noyes, the head of communications at Uber, has left the company — confirmed by a bounce-back email from Uber that states, “Please note, Andrew Noyes has moved on from Uber.” Before his 11-month stint at the ride-sharing company, Noyes was best known for his work in public relations at Facebook (s fb), where he managed the communications and public policy for a host of issues, including the company’s long-running legal battle with the Winkelvosses.

New York Lawmaker Pushes Bill to Thwart Phone Theft

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/17/new-york-lawmaker-pushes-bill-to-thwart-phone-theft/?_r=0

In New York, it’s not uncommon for someone to get their phone snatched right out of his hands on the subway, in the middle of Candy Crush Saga, by a hot-footed thief.

New York State Senator Jeffrey D. Klein wants to curb the practice, according to the New York Times, by requiring business to see or have “proof of ownership” (like a sales receipt) to buy or sell smartphones. While it wouldn’t stop one-off Craigslist sales or shadier practices, if it’s passed it could shine a light on where a phone goes after it leaves its owner’s hands. 

A new web tool lets you compare the world’s constitutions

The Comparing Constitutions Project has launched new web tool called Constitute, which lets users search their way through the world’s constitutions by keyword or theme. Not only is the tool handy for gathering info on international laws, but it’s also indicative of how the web can ease access to valuable data via nice interfaces masking lots of complicated data-prep work. The organization’s website has lots of other constitutional data and visualizations, too.

CloudFlare CEO: ‘Insane’ NSA gag order is costing U.S. tech firms customers

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2013/09/12/cloudflare-ceo-says-insane-nsa-gag-order-is-costing-u-s-tech-firms-customers/

Yup. Makes me wonder if the tech companies that have been lobbying for Patriot Act reform over the past few years were doing so in part to get out from under the NSA’s thumb. Policy discussions were always couched in geopolitical language, but they must have foreseen the backlash even from U.S. customers if word ever got out about what was up.