Elon Musk’s concern for the future destiny of mankind, as early as his childhood, the “Galaxy Roaming Guide” has begun to appear. In college, he has already thought about his goals and direction for the next few decades, and has not deviated in the future.
During the university period, Elon Musk began to think about the meaning of life. Finally, he locked in the goal of his future struggle, because he is convinced that the differences in the future of humanity are the following five areas.
- the Internet
- Sustainable energy
- Space exploration and multi-sphere expansion
- artificial intelligence
- Human genetic code reprogramming
In these more than two decades of entrepreneurship, Elon Musk has covered four of them.
It turns out that every step of Elon Musk’s graduation has not deviated from the thinking and direction that he had clearly established during his college years. The so-called outside world seems to have quite clear motives and beliefs behind his expanding ambitions and endless investment plans.
1 Join the Internet, from Zip2, to X.com and then to PayPal
In 1995, Elon Musk graduated from Penn, gave up the opportunity to go to Stanford University to further study materials science and physics, and decided to enter the Internet industry.
It is not surprising that Elon Musk devoted himself to the Internet because of the thinking established during the university period . Although in 1995, the Internet was still a very inconspicuous emerging field, and almost no small business knew how to access the Internet and upload information.
Even so, Elon Musk persuaded his brother, Kim Barr, to start a business together.
Musk set up an information website called Global Link, which was later renamed Zip2 to help small businesses build websites to let more people know their location and services.
With the gradual rise of the Internet, Zip2 has grown and Elon Musk has successfully become a millionaire that many entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley have dreamed of. This gave Elon Musk greater confidence and Elon Musk set up a new company.
In 1999, Elon Musk sold Zip2 to Compaq and invested the money earned by Zip2 in his newly established financial startup X.com, aimed at changing the backward banking payment system.
After that, the online payment system developed by X.com was a great success. In 2000, it merged with its largest competitor, Confinity. Elon Musk became the largest shareholder of the new company and retained the original name of X.com.
But a few months later, Elon Musk’s CEO position was usurped, X.com was renamed PayPal, Elon Musk restrained his anger, accepted the position of company executives, and continued to inject capital to increase his shares.
During the crowding of PayPal, his “Mars Exploration” plan sprouted. He began to eagerly read books such as “Soviet Rocket Handbook”, “Rocket Propulsion Principle”, and a large number of professionals in the space field, and even joined the “Mars Society.” “.” In the end, he summoned a group of the most outstanding engineers.
In June 2002, he founded his own space exploration company SpaceX.
A month later, with the retreat of the Internet boom, eBay was willing to buy PayPal for $1.5 billion. Elon Musk and the board members agreed, and Musk made a net profit of $250 million and $180 million after taxes . Elon Musk, whose price has skyrocketed, has injected more than 100 million dollars into the SpaceX project.
2 Interstellar immigration, creating SpaceX
Elon Musk’s plan to buy rockets in Russia has run into a wall. He is determined to make his own rocket. Musk’s creation of SpaceX is to create a ” better quality, lower-cost ” rocket thruster and master the process of launching rockets quickly. The airlines that make expensive rockets compete.
Elon Musk eventually named SpaceX’s first rocket “Falcon No. 1” and set a tough schedule to launch the first rocket 15 months after the company was founded.
To this end, Elon Musk and the employees started their crazy work. A year later, SpaceX’s rocket factory began to take shape. Musk decided to show the prototype of “Falcon No. 1” to the public in December 2003 and held it in Washington. The press conference was a great success .
However, the contractor’s backward progress, engine problems, valve failures, power distribution system failures, launch site restrictions, high winds, and various problems caused the “Falcon No. 1” fire launch plan to be postponed, and finally,
On March 24, 2006, the first official ignition was launched, but it fell directly on the launch site due to a fire in the engine.
However, Elon Musk said, SpaceX will continue to work hard, no matter how successful it is, it will not give up.
SpaceX carefully analyzed the cause of the failure and fired it again a year later. So, on March 21, 2007, the second launch, but the result failed. The third launch on August 2, 2008, still failed.
At this time, SpaceX has failed three times, facing a huge crisis, and the wealth accumulated by Musk on the Internet is almost exhausted, and at most it can only support the last launch.
Finally, on September 28, 2008, after the nine-minute journey, Falcon 1 successfully entered the orbit as planned, completing the miracle of the world’s first private rocket.
It turned out that 500 people spent six years before finally creating this miracle of science and business.
Later, when SpaceX was on the verge of bankruptcy, it harvested NASA’s $1.6 billion in payments and became a supplier of international space station transportation. From then on, it was on the right track and succeeded in launching rockets more than 20 times.
3 New energy technology development, investing in Tesla and Sun City
Many people think that Elon Musk founded Tesla, but it is not.
At first, two engineers who had a strong passion for electric planes and cars found Elon Musk, hoping that Musk would invest in the project. Musk was not interested in his electric aircraft project. He only loved electric cars and eventually injected $6.5 million. And became the largest shareholder and chairman of Tesla.
One year after Tesla was founded , the team of more than 100 people finally built a black version of the Roadster, known as the No. 1 engineering prototype, which accelerated to 60 miles per hour in 4 seconds , and Tesla was in the crowd. I received a warm response.
In fact, Elon Musk’s request for Tesla is not only about safety, speed and experience. He also has a high demand for Tesla’s design, so he also serves as the chief designer of Tesla.
In 2012, Tesla Model S was born , with ” luxury appearance “, ” increasing speed “, ” super high safety factor “, ” unique door handle design “, and ” Model 7 ” can quickly help Tes The company has made huge profits.
And he envisioned,
Tesla is responsible for the manufacture of battery packs, and Sun City is responsible for sales to end customers. Sun City is responsible for supplying solar panels to Tesla’s charging stations to help Tesla provide free charging services to drivers.
In fact, Tesla, Sun City and SpaceX are mutually helpful and complementary relationships in the short and long term, rather than separate projects. Behind these projects is a very rational thinking, not his random whimsy.
4 In the field of transportation, the “super high-speed rail” and the “digging tunnel” plan were proposed.
As early as 2013, Elon Musk proposed the idea of a super high-speed rail (Hyperloop).Mainly because of the slow speed and high cost of the high-speed rail that California plans to build. The idea is to use vacuum to transport cargo or people’s pods at a speed of 700 miles per hour (twice the speed of the aircraft). Between cities, and assume that it takes only 30 minutes from Los Angeles to San Francisco, or New York to Washington.
Elon Musk had hoped that someone would complete his idea of a super high-speed rail, but four years after the idea was put forward, the progress of the “super high-speed rail” was still slow.
So, at the end of 2016, Elon Musk founded The Boring Company , which plans to build a low-cost, fast-exploring tunnel to welcome Musk ’s vision of “ sound through the city ” and started with SpaceX in 2017. Start work.
5 Open the AI era, invest in OpenAI, and create Neuralink
Elon Musk has always been guilty about the safety of artificial intelligence, as he said,
We need to be very careful with artificial intelligence, which may be more dangerous than nuclear weapons . In all the stories we read from childhood, those who released the demons and caused them to do evil all believed that they could completely control them.
However, the fundamental purpose of his establishment of OpenAI is to compete with the absolute power of mastering AI technology, and hope to bring the benefits of AI to the majority, rather than seeing that AI is only in the hands of a few people and become an accomplice of autocracy.
He once said,The threat posed by AI will not be a threat to the explosion of a mushroom cloud in the sky. The problem with AI is that if only a few people own it, then those people will become dictators of the earth. As Lord Acton once said: “The decentralization of power can be free, and the concentration of power can only lead to autocracy.
He continued to create Neuralink, the purpose of which is to combine human brain and AI technology , to implant the human brain into the device, to connect the human brain and the computer, and to make people’s minds free to upload and download like a computer. .
6 Elon Musk’s founding process
From the Internet, to space exploration, electric cars, Sun City, and later to transportation and artificial intelligence, Elon Musk has been adhering to the goals and missions he established during his college years and continues to broaden his entrepreneurial landscape.
After the great success of SpaceX, Tesla and Sun City, he did not stop, but continued to enter more fields, such as transportation and artificial intelligence.
Looking back at Elon Musk’s entrepreneurial journey, we will find that Elon Musk’s success is not accidental. If his first Internet venture was accidental, then the rocket manufacturing, electric cars and solar panels will definitely depend on him. Sharp prejudging based on “first principles”.
He predicted that
- SpaceX low-cost rocket manufacturing can be commercialized;
- After the development of lithium battery technology, Tesla can be changed from high-end cars to popular vehicles, and can also be commercialized
- Sun City can reduce costs and commercialize it after making solar panels.
But the most important thing is that all these intuitions about business are fundamentally derived from the purest love and yearning of his childhood.
However, behind all these legendary entrepreneurial roads, there is a huge belief and mission that Elon Musk “believes in what he can do to change the destiny of mankind” .
I think that if there is no sense of faith and mission as a support, even the result of a strong rational thinking can not withstand the test of the desperate times of many deaths.
After reading this article, maybe you shouldn’t think about how great Elon Musk’s road to entrepreneurship is, but think about it.
- Where is your belief and desire?
- How do you mine and implement them?
If you finally find your own beliefs and desires, even if it is impossible to reach the height of Elon Musk, you will be able to find your favorite career, and spend a lifetime with satisfaction and fulfillment.
7 Appendix: Elon Musk Venture History Timeline
- In 1995, Elon Musk and his younger brother Kim Barr founded Zip2.
- In 1999, Elon Musk founded X.com and later changed its name to PayPal.
- In June 2002, the new company SpaceX was founded.
- In July 2002, eBay acquired PayPal, and Elon Musk earned 180 million after tax.
- In July 2003, Tesla was founded by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning.
- In February 2004, Elon Musk invested and became its largest shareholder and chief chairman.
- On March 24, 2006, SpaceX’s “Falcon No. 1” was launched for the first time and failed.
- In 2006, Elon Musk presented the initial vision of SolarCity, with cousin Lyndon Rive as CEO and co-founder.
- On March 21, 2007, SpaceX’s “Falcon No. 1” was launched for the second time and failed.
- On August 2, 2008, SpaceX’s “Falcon No. 1” was launched for the third time and failed.
- On September 28, 2008, SpaceX’s “Falcon No. 1” was launched for the fourth time and finally succeeded.
- In 2008, facing the financial crisis, Elon Musk became Tesla CEO and designer, and the first electric car Tesla Roadster was officially released.
- On June 22, 2012, Tesla’s four-door Model S was released for sale.
- On August 12, 2013, Elon Musk proposed the idea of “Hyperloop”.
- In September 2015, Tesla Model X entered the SUV market.
- In December 2015, Elon Musk announced the birth of OpenAI, bringing beneficial and safe AI to humans.
In 2016, co-founded Neuralink.