Musk has a spiritual head that cannot be matched by those with weak constitution. “His brother Kimball said that drama was the best companion in his life. He couldn’t live without it. He could live for it and die for it.” Walter Eyre, author of “The Biography of Elon Musk” Saxon said. Isaacson spent two years spending one week a month with the world’s richest man.
“More than most other great innovators, Musk is driven by a greater sense of mission. He has a strong urge to make life on Earth sustainable and to make humans a space-faring species. , and ensuring that artificial intelligence is good for us humans rather than harmful. These goals are audacious, and he may fail. But for now, he has become the most important person in designing and deploying innovative plans that will move us closer to those aspirations. Each one of them is a few steps closer,” Isaacson said. In the two years he spent with Musk, Isaacson witnessed every aspect of Musk’s life.
Musk built an “interstellar base” in Boca Chica, in southern Texas, near the Mexican border. Here he concentrated on building Starship, a reusable spacecraft and rocket system. Now, Boca Chica is almost his personal air port.
”He has a lot of things to achieve in his mind. Ever since he read the “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” when he was a child, he has not understood why we can’t go to other planets and why we stopped after we went to the moon. After he America, it seems, is a nation of adventurers. But he thinks people have lost that ability today,” Isaacson said.
Boca Chica became an ever-expanding space town. There are houses for Starfleet staff to spend the night, as well as a restaurant. Musk said in March 2021 that Boca Chica “will be adding thousands of people over the next year or two” and will be filled with engineers, technicians and support staff. Local residents have a mixed love-hate relationship with Musk. Some people think Musk has disrupted their lives, but others are extremely excited to watch the rocket launch for free from a “front row seat.”
”When people learned that he was going to have a cage fight with Zuckerberg in the Colosseum, everyone came to me and asked, is this true? I said no, he was just kidding. He often He showed a silly side and loved to use dark humor. Likewise, he also joked that he planned to buy the Manchester United football team,” Isaacson said.
In 2021, Musk admitted on the famous American variety show “Saturday Night Live” that he suffers from Asperger’s syndrome, a form of autism. “This means that he can be a brilliant rocket scientist, a battery engineer, an automotive engineer, but he is unlikely to be able to run his own ‘Twitter’, and his performance there is really unflattering. Because social media is a place where you need to understand other people’s emotions.”
”Most of us would like others to like us. Musk is not like this. He only cares about his company, products, and how to go to Mars… In short , he only cares about the goal.” Isaacson laughed, “Unless he really cares about some critical voices, he will send a few ‘tweets’. He doesn’t care about angering anyone.”
Musk in his childhood was not like the Musk who later became the world’s richest man and was sought after by hundreds of millions of fans.
In the 1980s, South Africa was rife with violence. Isaacson wrote in the book: “Musk’s most painful experience occurred in school. For a long time, he was the youngest and shortest student in the class, and it was difficult for him to understand the world. For him “The ability to empathize is not innate. He has no desire to please others and no such instinct. As a result, gangsters often target him and shake their fists at his face.” The children pushed Musk down the concrete steps. Beat him into a “swollen ball of flesh.” Decades later, Musk is still undergoing corrective surgery to repair the tissue inside his nose.
”But these traumas are nothing compared to the emotional trauma his father inflicted on him,” Isaacson said. Musk’s younger brother Kimball said: “He (father) has no sympathy for us brothers.”
Musk’s father is an extremely outstanding engineer, but also “a scoundrel and a charming visionary.” “. He was extremely strict with his children, but he made great achievements in materials science – just like Musk’s unique insights into materials now. It’s no secret that Musk is obsessed with stainless steel.
“His mother told me that the most unbearable thing for Musk in his life is to become like his father,” Isaacson said. “It is difficult for him to have empathy and emotional connection with others, and he cannot understand the joys, sorrows, and joys of others. He knows this himself. His emotions will cycle between clear skies and darkness, between passion and numbness, between indifference and true feelings, and occasionally he will fall into that kind of dual personality. Demonic mode’, terrifying those around him.”
Musk, on the other hand, will always fall in love with people who are mean to him and put him in deep emotional traps. “It’s sad,” his family said. To some extent, Musk seems to be subconsciously seeking a reenactment of a father-son relationship, and it can even be understood that this pathological relationship makes him feel familiar and safe.
He likes turbulent emotional relationships and “doesn’t seek a simple, stable relationship at all.”
In “The Biography of Elon Musk”, there is this description: “If you jump out of the melting pot of his native family, you will find that Elon exhibits an aura that makes him sometimes look like an alien—— His planned mission seems to be a longing to return home, and his desire to build a humanoid robot seems to express a psychological appeal for an intimate emotional relationship.”
Musk’s passion for making isn’t limited to his intimate relationships. As of now, Musk has 9 companies. “When he had SpaceX, Tesla and Neuralink, I thought, Oh my God, he’s going to have three companies, how can he possibly be busy?” Isaacson said.
At the beginning of 2022, Musk has launched 31 rockets, and these rockets have all landed successfully. Within the next few months, Tesla became the most valuable company in the world, building millions of vehicles. “So Musk couldn’t sit still,” Isaacson said. “He was going to give it a try.” ”
Twitter had offered Musk a board seat, but after that weekend, he felt it wasn’t enough because of his heart. It was about getting total control. So he decided that, even though some people didn’t like him, he was going to pay a high price and get 100% of Twitter. Then he flew to Vancouver to meet with Grimes. He played there He played the new role-playing action game “Elden’s Ring” until 5 o’clock in the morning. As soon as he finished the game, he immediately ‘pulled the trigger’ and started his plan to acquire Twitter.
“I thought he was going to screw up,” Isaacson said. “Unexpectedly, he actually started another AI company, xAI. He couldn’t stand things going smoothly, and when things went too smoothly, he wanted to do something different. He He calls it a ‘surge,’ and he has his employees do it every once in a while.”
At one point, Isaacson and Musk were walking near SpaceX. At the time, SpaceX was building a new big rocket, which would take at least a year. The project progressed smoothly and there were no delays.
”It was a Friday night, late, and he was standing on the launch platform, and there were two or three people working. He suddenly got very angry and said, why don’t you guys work harder, why aren’t there more people? Here. You know, it’s Friday night, and he’s going to do a ‘drive.'”
Musk threatened to find 400 people in the United States and have them work 24 hours a day. “He told his employees that within seven days, the debugged rocket must be on this launch platform,” Isaacson said, “even though it was not necessary at all.” Later, many employees left, saying they were being exploited. Done. But those who stayed said it was the most exciting thing they had ever done.
”Someone asks me, ‘Do you like Musk?’ or ‘What kind of person is he?’ I would say, which ‘Musk’? There are too many ‘Musk’s, and he has at least 5 personalities.” Ai Saxon said.
Musk has the ability to go from extremely happy to extremely angry in an instant. Sometimes he treats people mercilessly and yells, but he will soon enter another mood. “I was surprised that he almost forgot what he had just done,” Isaacson said. “It’s not easy to be around a genius like Musk. He sometimes repeats his opinions over and over. Sometimes
he falls completely silent.” “The same goes for him during meetings. 15 people sit around the table, reporting to him or discussing issues with him. Once he stops talking, others know that he is going to think, and no one will see him again. Disturb him.”
Musk’s weaknesses are also obvious, which Isaacson summed up as “poor feedback mechanisms.” He did not accept people’s criticism. Once people pointed out his mistakes or tried to tell him that it would not work, he became very angry and kept urging people to try again and try again.
Musk is 1.88 meters tall and has a strong physique like an athlete, but does not have the coordination of an athlete – a sense of contradiction that seems to have run through his life. In Isaacson’s book, there is a description that is still fresh in my memory: “He covered his clumsiness with a kind of fanaticism, and this clumsiness tightly wrapped his fanaticism. Such a soul crammed into such a body It makes him feel a little uncomfortable… he walks like a big bear with a mission.”