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    • Who do you think is the most important person alive today? When Neil deGrasse Tyson was asked who he thought will influence society the most in the long run he chose Elon Musk.

    • Fascinating question! To me he is the most interesting person in the world. Listen to us β€” geeks, scientists, Tyson β€” thinking Musk is more influential than Trump, the man who gets all the headlines and uses his most powerful man in the world status to block climate change efforts.

      Musk has so much imagination. I went to the Stanford Shopping center the other day and, nestled among stores like Macy's, Apple, Cartier, and Sephora...was Tesla. You walk in and order the model, color, and options you want and they deliver it to you. You don't drive to some big lot off yonder and have a high-pressure salesman try and convince you to take one of their units on the lot that isn't quite what you want.

      πŸ‘† That speaks to the culture Tyson spoke of.

      Most influential technologist? Are Elon's cars and rockets more influential than Larry Page's search engine?

    • Anyone can create a search engine no? Of course some are better than others and they do have the power to influence where people find their information or buy their wares but...does it even matter? Yeah and I'm sure a fair bit but... I want to agree with Tyson. Musk has a vision, he is trying to break down the limits of where we can go and how fast (think no patents). We could get rid of Google tomorrow and everyone would just use Yahoo or something else. I'd rather get rid of Apple computers than Elon Musk and I've been a user of Apple computers and tech for over a decade.

      Presidents power...maybe but the history suggests (as does Paul Krugman - economic nobel prize) they have little effect on employment rates and such. If Trump started a war.... :(

      Chris you're absolutely right that we are biased towards science and technology. But as you've said - people connect to Musk and his vision. If Trump loses the next election, does his presidency have a lasting positive effect? Couldn't any Republican president have appointed judges??

    • Oh I'm not suggesting his cars and rockets are more influential but rather his vision is more influential. Tunnels as a solution to the traffic problem, electric cars and batteries as a solution to climate change, rockets as a solution to the planets resource limitations, working together on scientific and technological solutions rather than against... I think his vision is the winner and not his products though they seem to be doing fairly well ;) What problems are these other people focused on? I'd say The Gates Foundation is trying to solve some serious problems :)

    • I heard two fascinating things about Google's search engine. When Larry was asked why build yet another search engine when there were already 23 of them (my friends sold Webcrawler to AOL for $1 million because they didn't think it was a big deal), Larry responded: we're not building a search engine, we're building an AI. Oh snap.

      The other thing, isn't Bing a failure? Well, they handle almost 30% of the web's searches and apparently produce $5 billion a year in revenue, about equal to YouTube by some estimates. I think Larry crushed them all but Bing, including Bezos' A9, because Google's search technology is rocket science. They only make it look easy.

      But this!

    • You've made a pretty good argument Chris but I think in your heart of hearts you're still with Degrasse on this one :)

    • If you mean influential to wield control, Bezos, Jobs, Page and Zuckerberg would win out. If you mean influential to inspire then I think Musk wins hands down.

    • I think Google's algorithm is certainly influential but more towards the manipulative than the inspirational. The mantra of Do no evil is being buried in reality. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/aug/02/google-working-on-censored-search-engine-for-china. Especially in light of what is happening to the Uighurs. https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/08/22/chinas-mass-internment-camps-have-no-clear-end-in-sight/. Certainly seems like communication tech is getting a bit of a wake up call as of late. I wonder how much reality is actually behind the TV show Silicon Valley. Crazy times!!! Nice shot of SpaceX btw. I had a friend post a photo he captured from Phoenix and thought it was an alien invasion. LOL

    You've been invited!