By neglecting spatial intelligence, how many Elon Musks have we missed?


Peter Thiel famously said of the future: “We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters.” As innovative as Twitter might be, it pales in comparison to engineering feats that could truly transform our future. Think, for example, of the things Elon Musk has been dreaming about: the Hyperloop, a Mars colony, or a new energy source.

In his new biography Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic FutureAshlee Vance describes Musk as a “modern day alloy of Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Howard Hughes, and Steve Jobs”—someone who has a mind like a computer and the ability to endure failure in his quest to change the world through his companies. Vance, like a literary paleontologist, unearths aspects of Musk’s personality demonstrated since childhood, and the parallel traits he values in employees. As Dolly Singh, former head of talent acquisition for Space-X, told Vance: “We were looking for people…

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