Tesla seems to be going through some manufacturing difficulties with the factory shutting down Model 3 production for 6 days, but does it matter? We don’t think so. Musk is among the most brilliant minds of our century but more importantly, has a knack for business akin to his technical and scientific know-how. Sure, Tesla stock may take a bit of a hit but this is nothing he hasn’t had to tackle before. In fact, Elon Musk probably isn’t worried at all. If you do your research, here’s what he is really worried about.
Here is this guy that is pretty sure the thing you are looking at right now is among the greatest threats to humanity. No, hes not speaking about our growing obsession with staring at sheets of digitized glass, and the unhealthy sedentary existence associated with doing so. Hes speaking about the thing living inside the machine humming silently behind that glass: artificial intelligence. It turns out that Elon Musk, one of the worlds most successful entrepreneurs, is plagued with existential worries. His new biography, Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future, reveals the billionaire engineer is severely worried about the rise of technology so intelligent it could destroy the human race in an effort to defend itself.
Why should we listen to him? Well, with regards to the future, he more than anybody is making it happen. With his company Tesla, has transformed the automotive industry by producing the most compelling range of vehicles of all time and they are electric. With SolarCity, hes producing the cheapest form of energy in most states of the US, and its through solar energy. And with SpaceX, hes building state-of the artwork rockets and spacecraft much cheaper than anybody else, which are about to become an order of magnitude cheaper through partial and full reusability.
Why is Musk, who sold his foundation stake in PayPal for more than US$150m, doing this? To increase our chances, to allow the expansion of mankind, to take one of our eggs out of this basket and put it on Mars as quickly as possible. A decade ago, the majority of serious thinkers laughed these ideas off as ludicrous. Not now. Musk had a difficult start in South Africa since the unassuming nerd from a broken family. He was a loner in childhood and suffered for many Years from bullying from the spartan Afrikaner culture that he was brought up in.
But now the man, sometimes known as Musk General, has risen. He’s willed 3 lately Thought impossible companies into existence, nearly concurrently, each now worth on the order of US$10 billion. At the biography, Ashlee Vance level headedly paints an insightful picture of the vehemence that’s Musk, his growth into a leader, the personal sacrifice and torture he’s chosen to endure, and the arduous development of his businesses. Any worries that the book will Be a shallow money catching rehash of a dozen YouTube interviews are quickly put to bed. Vance fought to get Musk on side and finally managed to conduct regular interview with the man himself, the people closest to him, and those which were there at pivotal points through his life so far. As somebody who started life in similarly difficult circumstances in post Apartheid South Africa, with a background in aerospace and a strong affinity for the potential of Mars.
We have a soft spot for Elon Musk. He’s a brilliant innovator and has an incredible track record for doing the impossible. All that makes it hard not stand behind him.