Elon Musk Stories May 8

YouTube to internationally livestream Elon Musk on Saturday Night Live

Saturday Night Live is kicking off the final three episodes of this season with Elon Musk hosting and Miley Cyrus performing. For the first time, SNL will be available as a livestream on YouTube for international audiences wanting to see Elon Musk.

Elon Musk Stories May 25, 2018

We haven’t done a Talking Schmidt in a while, not because the former Google CEO and current Alphabet Board member Dr. Eric Schmidt has been quiet with his sometimes outlandish commentary, but because of his reduced role at Google and its now parent company Alphabet. In February Schmidt stepped down as Chairman, taking an innovation role at MIT and was replaced by John Hennessy.

But back to the matter at hand…

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Elon Musk Stories March 15, 2016

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A new JJ Abrams-backed web series called “Moon Shot” officially launched at SXSW this week, telling the stories of the actual scientists behind the teams that are competing for $30 million in prizes. The series spans across nine short films, all of which are now available for download on Google Play and will soon be available on YouTube…

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Elon Musk Stories January 15, 2016

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When Tesla’s Elon Musk tweeted that he expected to the company’s cars to be able to drive themselves across the U.S. from coast to coast within two years, my response was that I might believe the tech could hit that deadline, but not the law. It seems I may be wrong.

The WSJ reports that the Obama administration wants to invest $3.9B in crafting rules and policies to facilitate the rapid rollout of self-driving cars. This would take place at the federal level, ensuring consistent national laws rather than a patchwork of state-by-state regulations …

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Elon Musk Stories December 11, 2015

halo-4-cortana-256389A group of influential technology entrepreneurs and investors introduced today a new non-profit artificial intelligence research company called ‘OpenAI’. Tesla CEO Elon Musk joins his former PayPal colleagues and venture capitalists Reid Hoffman and Peter Thiel, along with several other tech investors, to pledge $1 billion toward the organisation with the goal to “advance digital intelligence in the way that is most likely to benefit humanity as a whole”. expand full story

Elon Musk Stories November 30, 2015

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Update: A source close to the company tells us Rose is not working on Google’s car project. We are also hearing that he might have been let go at Tesla.

Robert Rose has an impressive resumé as a software engineer. He worked at HP while completing his MS in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Oregon State University. He then developed award-winning PSP games at Sony such as Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror and Resistance: Retribution.

In 2009, he moved to California to be the lead software engineer for SpaceX’s first Falcon 9 and Dragon flight. He quickly became Director of Flight Software, a position he held until July 2014. After a brief stint at machine learning firm Vicarious, he joined Tesla last May to lead the Autopilot team into the release of v7.0 update, which enabled ‘Autosteer’ and ‘Auto Lane Change’.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Rose left Tesla right after the release of the Autopilot in October and a month later, we learn that he joined Google. expand full story

Elon Musk Stories October 16, 2015

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk held a press conference a couple of days ago to explain the Autopilot features included in the company’s 7.0 software update, but LIDAR, one of the remote sensing technologies that Google uses in its self-driving car, also came up briefly. Elon Musk had some bold comments about to use of LIDAR in autonomous vehicles, in response to one inquiry from a WSJ reporter, which questioned whether the Model S would need more sensors for greater levels autonomy… expand full story

Elon Musk Stories August 17, 2015

Google today used a YouTube video to announce Project Sunroof, a website through which it is automating much of the process of researching and then purchasing solar panels for the home.

The gist of it is that while the cost of solar energy has been falling dramatically over the past few years, thanks in part to subsidies and economies of scale, the actual process of determining whether solar panels are right for you — logistically and economically speaking — is still complicated. Google is (still) a very data-driven company, though, and thinks that it can use data to provide just the right insights and information consumers are in need of, tailored specifically to each individual household. expand full story

Elon Musk Stories May 11, 2015

Elon Musk doesn’t have a place in the Valley, often sleeps at Larry Page’s house

From Electrek:

Elon Musk, although CEO of a company based on Silicon Valley, often finds himself without a place to sleep when he’s away from his $17 million home located in Los Angeles. According to statements from Google CEO Larry Page given to Ashlee Vance for his upcoming book on the Tesla CEO, Musk is “kind of homeless,” and sometimes sleeps over at Page’s house when he’s in town.

“He’s kind of homeless, which I think is sort of funny,” Google CEO Larry Page said. “He’ll e-mail and say, ‘I don’t know where to stay tonight. Can I come over?'”

Larry Page hasn’t “given him a key or anything yet,” though, for his 8,000 square-foot, six bedroom home in Palo Alto. He owns another 6,000 square-foot environmentally friendly mansion on the same property. But maybe it won’t be long—it would make sense that maybe Musk’s focus is more to build out his business relationship with Google. It’s not like he couldn’t afford to sleep in a nice hotel.

The Washington Post put together some other notable quotes from the book.

Elon Musk Stories February 26, 2015

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Google has invested $300M in a SolarCity fund designed to bring solar power to around 25,000 homes. Debt financing brings the total to $750M, making it the largest ever investment in residential solar power, reports Reuters.

While investing in solar power makes sound economic sense for homeowners, as well as being good for the environment, many are deterred by the typical $20-30,000 upfront cost of purchasing the panels. The SolarCity fund instead allows homeowners to lease the panels, paying a monthly fee to do so …  expand full story

Elon Musk Stories January 19, 2015

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According to a new report from The Information, Google is currently considering investing in SpaceX, Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s privately funded company working to make advancements in space travel. Rather than SpaceX projects looking to enable low-cost space travel, Google’s potential investment, according to the report, would be to help “support the development of SpaceX satellites that could beam low-cost Internet around the globe to billions who don’t have it.”

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Elon Musk Stories December 2, 2014

The MIT Technology Review does a profile on DeepMind founder Demis Hassabis who sold his company to Google for $600+M earlier this year. The guy is clearly a genius and has degrees in both neuroscience and computer science and typical Google acquihire. But what caught my attention after looking at what DeepMind does and what Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking worry about:

Hassabis’s reluctance to talk about applications might be coyness, or it could be that his researchers are still in the early stages of understanding how to advance the company’s AI software. One strong indicator that Hassabis believes progress toward a powerful new form of AI will be swift is that he is setting up an ethics board inside Google to consider the possible downsides of advanced artificial intelligence. “It’s something that we or other people at Google need to be cognizant of. We’re still playing Atari games currently,” he says, laughing. “But we are on the first rungs of the ladder.”

That all these smart people are afraid of what AI can do to humanity is chilling. It is slightly reassuring that Google is thinking seriously about the implications.

A video of Hassabis explaining his work follows: expand full story

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