Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance Deck (158)
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1

He’s also wired like a scientist and suffers mental anguish at the sight of a factual error.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

2

One thing that Musk holds in the highest regard is resolve, and he respects people who continue on after being told no.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

3

Forget Steve Jobs. Musk is a sci-fi version of P. T. Barnum who has gotten extraordinarily rich by preying on people’s fear and self-hatred.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

4

there’s a sense of purpose and pressure hanging over any conversation with the man. Musk doesn’t really shoot the shit.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

5

Oddly enough, making Nothing appear to be Something took a lot of work.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

6

Between Google and Apple’s introduction of the iPhone in 2007, there’s a wasteland of ho-hum companies.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

7

While much of America’s infrastructure decays, Musk is building a futuristic end-to-end transportation system that would allow the United States to leapfrog the rest of the world.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

8

What Musk has developed that so many of the entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley lack is a meaningful worldview.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

9

Asked how he survives this schedule, Musk said, “I had a tough childhood, so maybe that was helpful.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

10

The Lucent Dossier Experience—an avant-garde group of performers—were on the luxurious train, performing palm readings and acrobatics.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

11

(A word of warning: There’s going to be a lot of “fuck” in this book. Musk adores the word, and so do most of the people in his inner circle.)

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

12

In the two decades Musk has spent creating companies, he’s left behind a trail of people who either adore or despise him.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

13

It seemed like one should try to make the world a better place because the inverse makes no sense.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

14

“He points out that one of the really tough things is figuring out what questions to ask,” Musk said. “Once you figure out the question, then the answer is relatively easy. I came to the conclusion that really we should aspire to increase the scope and scale of human consciousness in order to better understand what questions to ask.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

15

ultralogical mission statement. “The only thing that makes sense to do is strive for greater collective enlightenment,” he said.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

16

the white Afrikaner culture so prevalent in Pretoria and the surrounding areas. Hypermasculine behavior was celebrated and tough jocks were revered.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

17

Haldeman seemed to have everything going for him when, in 1950, he decided to give it all away. The doctor-cum-politician had long railed against government interference in the lives of individuals and had come to see the Canadian bureaucracy as too meddlesome.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

18

The perplexing thing was that Elon seemed to drift off into a trance at times. People spoke to him, but nothing got through when he had a certain, distant look in his eyes. This happened so often that Elon’s parents and doctors thought he might be deaf.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

19

the very visual way in which Musk’s mind worked. He could see images in his mind’s eye with a clarity and detail that we might associate today with an engineering drawing produced by computer software.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

20

“For images and numbers, I can process their interrelationships and algorithmic relationships,” Musk said. “Acceleration, momentum, kinetic energy—how those sorts of things will be affected by objects comes through very vividly.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

21

The most striking part of Elon’s character as a young boy was his compulsion to read. From a very young age, he seemed to have a book in his hands at all times. “It was not unusual for him to read ten hours a day,”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

22

Elon, in fact, churned through two sets of encyclopedias—a feat that did little to help him make friends. The boy had a photographic memory, and the encyclopedias turned him into a fact factory. He came off as a classic know-it-all.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

23

Elon’s constant yearning to correct people and his abrasive manner put off other kids and added to his feelings of isolation.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

24

Errol has since been remarried, and Elon has two, younger half sisters of whom he’s quite protective. Elon and his siblings seem determined not to bad-mouth Errol publicly, so as not to upset the sisters.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

25

“ultra-present and very intense.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

26

He seemed to delight in being hard on the boys and sucked the fun out of common childhood diversions.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

27

certainly be accurate to say that I did not have a good childhood,” he said. “It may sound good. It was not absent of good, but it was not a happy childhood. It was like misery. He’s good at making life miserable—that’s for sure. He can take any situation no matter how good it is and make it bad. He’s not a happy man. I don’t know . . . fuck . . . I don’t know how someone becomes like he is. It would just cause too much trouble to tell you any more.” Elon and Justine have vowed that their children will not be allowed to meet Errol.

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

28

It was part of an atypical upbringing—just this insane set of experiences that changes how you view risk. You don’t grow up thinking getting a job is the hard part. That’s not interesting enough.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

29

“For some reason, they decided that I was it, and they were going to go after me nonstop. That’s what made growing up difficult. For a number of years, there was no respite. You get chased around by gangs at school who tried to beat the shit out of me, and then I’d come home, and it would just be awful there as well. It was just like nonstop horrible.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

30

“Honestly, there were just no signs that he was going to be a billionaire,” said Gideon Fourie, another classmate. “He was never in a leadership position at school. I was rather surprised to see what has happened to him.”

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance

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