Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Recode: Anthony Levandowski Was Hired as a Consultant at Uber While He Founded Otto

A small but truly amazing update on that Uber-Otto lawsuit. Johana Bhuiyan, Recode:

To bolster its suit, Alphabet laid out a detailed timeline of Levandowski’s relationship with Uber executives, including CEO Travis Kalanick. According to Alphabet, that relationship dates back to the summer of 2015, approximately six months before Levandowski even left Alphabet.

Now, sources are adding more to that claim. Kalanick hired Levandowski as a consultant to Uber’s fledgling self-driving effort as early as February 2016, six months before Levandowski publicly got his company off the ground, according to three sources.

It’s not entirely uncommon for engineers to consult for other companies, but the timing of Levandowski’s hiring at Uber so close to the initial formation of Otto raises a number of questions.

You don’t say. Questions such as “Would this look a little funny to the employer I left just a few weeks prior?” or “Is this a potentially suspicious arrangement should said past employer decide to sue my future employer?” Those are the important questions worth asking.