by Ashlee Vance

Ratings: 9/10

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

I read the book in three or four days, one of the fastest. I remember staying up one night and feeling all pumped up by the morning. Elon Musk’s story is impressive. If the book cannot inspire you to take risks, then I don’t know what could.

Musk holds in the highest regard is resolve, and he respects people who continue on after being told no. He does what he wants, and he is relentless about it. It’s Elon’s world, and the rest of us live in it.

I don’t know about other things like saving humanity or transitioning to clean energy, but one thing I admire about Elon Musk is his memes. In fact, that is one of the prime reasons for following him on Twitter.

South Africa was like a prison for someone like Elon. I believe that the place someone is born has a lot of influence on what that person will do. In addition to hard work, talent, and luck, one also needs the right exposure and opportunities to do great things. I don’t think Elon would have achieved what he did if he did not move to the US. That’s just facts.

When Elon gets into something, he develops just this different level of interest in it than other people. That is what differentiates Elon from the rest of humanity.

“Eberhard had come up with the name Tesla Motors”

“One of my favorite things about Elon is his ability to make enormous decisions very quickly. That is still how it works today.” I think this is true of any remarkable person today. The ability to navigate things quickly under complex environments is what separates greats from the ordinary.

The guiding principle at SpaceX is to embrace your work and get stuff done. People who await guidance or detailed instructions languish. The same goes for workers who crave feedback.

By 2025 Tesla could very well have a lineup of five or six cars and be the dominant force in a booming electric car market. Playing off its current growth rate, SolarCity will have had time to emerge as a massive utility company and the leader in a solar market that had finally lived up to its promise. SpaceX?

SpaceX is already proving to be a game-changer. I think the synergy of companies that Elon has been investing in will have a massive impact on the planet’s future.

Whether you like Elon Musk or not, you have to give it to him for making SpaceX and Tesla what they are today. Love him or hate him, he’ll go down as one of the visionaries of his time. Tesla is arguably the most valuable automaker today, and SpaceX is launching rockets after rockets. It remains to be seen what breakthroughs Elon and his companies would make in the upcoming decade.

Overall, the book tends to be a little biased toward Elon Musk, but if you overlook that, I think the book does a pretty good job of summing up the man and his ambitions.

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