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Today, Elon Musk is one of the most influential people on Earth. But he's not going to stop there, ahead of the colonization of Mars and other equally ambitious projects. The article will tell us how our lover of space, cryptocurrencies, and memes started.


A lot can be said about the primary inventor of modernity and the wealthiest man in the world. Elon Musk owns Tesla and SpaceX, the largest private companies in the electric car and space equipment industries.


With their help, the billionaire plans to implement ambitious projects for the colonization of Mars, the development of his satellite network, the creation of a full-fledged artificial intelligence, and much more.


Everything you need to know about Elon Musk



His fortune was estimated at $ 256 billion last year; he overtook the previous leader in the rating - the head of Amazon, Jeff Bezos. After the victory, Musk sent him a massive statue with the number 2.


Elon Musk sold off most of his property to confirm the seriousness of his intentions to colonize Mars, and now almost all of his fortune is shares of SpaceX and Tesla Motors.


To understand how much money he has, imagines: Musk can spend 10 million dollars a day, and it would still take about 70 years for the funds to run out.


Suppose we ignore the ambitious plans and all his special activities. In that case, the bottom line is just a fun guy who, despite an insanely busy schedule, will not miss the opportunity to joke on Twitter once or twice after work.


But first things first, let's go back a little.


Africa, first game, and early career


Elon Musk was born in Pretoria (South Africa). His parents are an electrical engineers and a model who divorced when he was ten. He and his brother and sister stayed in Africa with his father.


According to Elon's stories, his father was a rigorous person but instilled a love for programming in his child. At age 12, Musk created his own video game, Blastar, which he sold for $500. By the way, you can play this game here. Management leaves much to be desired, but it can deliver some pleasure.


Musk used the proceeds from the sale of the game to buy shares in a pharmaceutical company. Having made some money selling them, he could go to Canada, where he studied for some time before transferring to the University of Pennsylvania in the USA. There he completed his undergraduate studies in two areas at once: physics and economics.


He then went to graduate school at Stanford, studied there for less than a week, and left to start a business with his brother Kimbal. The company was called Zip2 and sold programs that can be called the progenitors of modern Google. Maps, 2GIS, Yandex.Maps, etc. During the two years of its existence, the company grew significantly and was sold for $307 million. Musk, at that time, owned about 7% of the shares and received $ 22 million due to the transaction.




Almost immediately, Musk invested in, getting the opportunity to become its CEO. A year later, the firm merged with Confinity, which owned the PayPal money transfer system.


Sometime after the merger, Musk began to insist that all the company's software be transferred to the much more promising Windows OS (at that time, everything worked on UNIX), for which he was removed from the post of CEO.


Despite the removal, he remained on the board of directors and actively promoted the company on various online auctions, including eBay. Shortly after that, PayPal began to grow at a tremendous rate and entered the stock market. A year later, the company was sold for $1.5 billion, and Musk received a share of $180 million.




With more than half of the money received from the sale of the previous company, Musk invested in a new business, which he had long dreamed of. This is how SpaceX was born. Today it is the largest company in space equipment and technology production. Its main goal is to make space travel more accessible. In addition, with the help of SpaceX, Musk plans to fly to Mars before 2025 and contribute to its colonization in the future.


As Musk has repeatedly said in many interviews, his passion for space was strongly influenced by the works and views of Isaac Asimov, an American writer and popularizer of science. Asimov believed that it was important to explore space in order to save the human race. For example, if another meteorite falls on Earth, the entire population will be destroyed. In the case of colonization of other planets, the threat of extinction will be greatly reduced.


Over the 20 years of its existence, SpaceX has managed to create several Falcon launch vehicles, a full-fledged Crew Dragon space shuttle, and many other equipment for space flights. The first flight of the Dragon spacecraft with astronauts on board took place in May 2020.


Another important task of SpaceX is to create an entire satellite network that would provide the entire population of the planet with cheap high-speed Internet. Just imagine - you are a Bedouin, traveling through the desert and at any time you can sit down to relax and watch the Friends series from your phone.


Electric car in space and David Bowie


In 2018, Musk launched an electric Tesla Roadster into space as a test flight for the Falcon Heavy rocket. The flight was a demonstration that the rocket could launch a payload to orbit Mars. According to the billionaire, he wanted to send into space "the most stupid thing imaginable."


Behind the wheel of the car sat a mannequin named Starman, which is the title of one of the songs of the British rock musician David Bowie. True, when the car was started, his much more popular song “Space Oddity” played in it.


In the glove compartment of the electric car was a copy of the novel The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams and a towel with the words Don't Panic (Russian - "without panic"). This small element is a tribute to the writer, who repeatedly joked in his works that a towel is an essential attribute of any traveler.




Tesla Motors is Musk's only public company on the market, and its name refers to the famous physicist Nikola Tesla.


One of the most common misconceptions is that Musk is the founder of the company. Actually it is not. It was created by engineers Martin Eberhard and Mark Tarpenning in 2003. Elon Musk joined the company a year later and invested in it some of the money received from the sale of PayPal.


But the company is not just associated with his name - for almost 18 years of managing the company, he managed to bring it to the stock market and achieve a capitalization of $ 1 trillion. Prior to this, only Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Alphabet (Google) took such a bar.


An important goal of Tesla Motors is to make the planet cleaner. That is why the company not only creates electric cars, but also invests in projects to develop alternative energy sources. One such project is Tesla's subsidiary SolarCity, an energy company that sells and installs solar panels.


Another achievement of the company is the creation of a full-fledged autopilot. At the moment, the autopilot is almost not regulated by law, and it is recommended to use it in a limited way - keep your hands on the steering wheel and still follow the road.


In the coming years, the billionaire plans to create entire taxi fleets consisting exclusively of cars with an autopilot, and they can be controlled using a mobile application.


More projects


Musk has repeatedly expressed concerns about the creation of artificial intelligence, since it can potentially pose a much greater threat than, for example, nuclear weapons.


But still, the billionaire is one of the founders of OpenAI, an American company that develops technologies based on machine learning. Its main goal is to create a full-fledged artificial intelligence that would work for the benefit of all mankind.


Another interesting project is the neurotech company Neuralink, which developed a small N1 brain chip in the summer of 2019. After several years of testing, the company held a spectacular presentation - during it, the monkey was able to play a video game using only a chip implanted in the brain.


In the short term, the company's developments should contribute to the treatment of serious brain diseases, and in the long term - to improve people.


The last project in this chapter that deserves attention is the construction company The Boring Company. Its main task is to create a system of underground superhighways and solve the problem of traffic jams.


In 2017, the firm began construction of one of the underground tunnels in California.


According to Musk, perhaps in the future The Boring Company will be used for a colony on Mars.


In addition, with the help of this company, Musk sells a huge amount of comic merchandise. For example, high-tech whistles, flamethrowers and children's (!) ATVs.


Iron Man and fantasy


The director of the Marvel film series about Iron Man, Jon Favreau, has repeatedly stated that when creating the image of the main character, he was largely inspired by the personality of Elon Musk. The billionaire even got a small cameo in which he played himself, and many scenes of the franchise were filmed in the main building of the Musk space company.


In addition to Iron Man, Musk has appeared as a cameo in many other projects. Among them: The Simpsons, Rick and Morty, The Big Bang Theory, etc.


As mentioned above, Musk is a big fan of science fiction and does not hesitate to openly declare it. For example, the Falcon booster was named after one of the ships in Star Wars.


Another billionaire bought the Wet Nellie submarine, which was filmed for one of the films about special agent James Bond, for $ 1 million. In the future, he plans to rebuild it with the latest technology from his car company.


Interesting fact:


Elon Musk and Canadian singer Grimes have a child together with a rather unusual name - "X Æ A-12". Hidden in the name is the mathematical variable X, the designation for artificial intelligence "AI" and their favorite model of the A-12 reconnaissance aircraft, which has no weapons on board, and its main advantage is its high speed.


Twitter, cryptos and memes


Musk gained great popularity on the Internet thanks to his love for Twitter. In it, he advertises the company's products, expresses thoughts, or simply communicates with fans and jokes.


Separately, it is worth noting that a large percentage of his tweets are dedicated to cryptocurrencies. Often, such messages greatly affect the value of coins, especially small ones.


For example, Musk has repeatedly spoken out about the Dogecoin cryptocurrency, which is why its quotes have grown by more than 100%. True, before that, he also dropped them by almost 40%.


In the Russian-speaking part of the Internet, the meme “How do you like it, Elon Musk?” is associated with the billionaire, in which the characters create ridiculous situations, for which they then come up with no less ridiculous engineering solutions. For example, attaching a broom instead of a windshield wiper to a car, trying to drive a bicycle wheel with a homemade cola and mentos motor, etc.


For some time, the meme lived its own life, until it went beyond the Internet - straight to the NTV channel. In one of the stories, a teenager from Nevinnomyssk managed to turn the seat and steering wheel, as well as swap the trunk and hood in one of the old Zhiguli. All this created the impression that the car was going backwards.


Then NTV employees tweeted an excerpt from the plot and added the inscription: “How do you like it, Elon Musk?” To which the billionaire replied in Russian - "ha ha, awesome."


Summarizing the article, we can only add that Elon Musk is not only a successful businessman, a talented engineer and a big dreamer, but also just a fun guy who will not miss the opportunity to chat with fans on Twitter after work.


And while his plans to conquer space may (and should) cause some skepticism, it's nice to see that such an influential person spends his colossal resources on developing technology and moving humanity forward.


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