If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent the last few weeks rushing around ticking items off your ‘to do’ list, and then wondering why you don’t have much to show for all that hard work.
For Elon Musk, it’s a different story. The major moves he’s made recently will put pretty much anyone else’s achievements in the shade.
Here are a few of the highlights:
Oh just…UNVEILED A SPACESHIP!
Not a bad way to kick things off. Through his SpaceX venture, Musk introduced a new cone-shaped spaceship that he plans to use to take astronauts to the International Space Station.
With NASA’s space shuttles grounded since 2011, the space agency finds itself like a teenager without a car, having to beg other people for lifts. It currently has to pay the Russian government an eye-watering $71 million per seat every time it wants to get its astronauts to the space station.
Musk sees the new Dragon V2 spaceship as the answer, although it’ll be a couple of years before it makes its first manned test flight.
Discarded a Few Centuries of Entrepreneurial Wisdom
Generally this is the exact opposite of what any sane technological innovator would do. But the risky move is starting to pay off already, as people see the unconventional wisdom of encouraging other carmakers to produce electric vehicles. The more electric cars there are, the more impetus there will be behind creating charging networks and researching improvements like better batteries.
Tesla’s shares gained 10% in the wake of the announcement, tacking an extra half a billion onto Musk’s net worth.
Became a Solar Panel Maker
Besides running SpaceX and Tesla, Elon Musk also manages to fit in being chairman of solar power company SolarCity. Oh, and the company was Musk’s idea.
Until now, SolarCity has focused mostly on installing solar equipment produced by other companies, but this month Musk announced the $200 million acquisition of solar panel maker Silevo, and the creation of a huge manufacturing plant in Buffalo, N.Y.
It’s another surprising move, since the problem in the solar industry is too much supply and too little demand, but Musk and the SolarCity co-founders Peter and Lyndon Rive said they were addressing “not the lay of the land today … but how we see the future developing.”
Announced an Electric SUV
Oh, and back at Tesla, Musk gave a quick preview of its next electric vehicle, the Model X electric SUV.
Traditionally, electric vehicles and SUVs have been at opposite ends of the car-buying market, but Tesla’s new model gives the old gas-guzzler an eco-friendly makeover. Plus it’s got Back to the Future-style gull-wing doors.
Other “Minor” Events Elon Musk Had Time For
Makes you wonder what he’ll get up to in the next few weeks, while the rest of us are filling our days with laundry, trips to the grocery store, and a thousand other tasks that seem urgent but are quickly forgotten.