Elon Musk Had a Monumental Week

Elon Musk Had a Monumental Week

Elon Musk Tesla

Considering the sheer quantity of corporations under his belt, it’s a real marvel that Elon Musk has any time at all to spend on Twitter. The tech magnate owns and heads SpaceX, Tesla and xAI. And though he found a replacement to helm Twitter, he still owns (and passionately uses) the platform.

All told, Musk is a busy man. And he had a very busy week.


One of Musk’s many missions is to populate Mars. A big obstacle blocking that extra-terrestrial objective is the sheer cost of space travel. So, the billionaire is working to make space travel accessible; to do this, he decided to emulate air travel with the world’s first reusable rocket.

“If one can figure out how to effectively reuse rockets just like airplanes, the cost of access to space will be reduced by as much as a factor of a hundred,” he said in 2015. “A fully reusable vehicle has never been done before. That really is the fundamental breakthrough needed to revolutionize access to space.”

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SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket is a two-stage craft; the booster component is designed to break off and make a safe landing back on the planet, where it can then be refurbished, repaired and reused.

SpaceX sent one of these Falcon 9 rockets out on its 16th mission July 10, breaking the company’s own rocket reuse record after the booster safely returned home.

Just a few days later, the company — which remains private — hit a valuation of approximately $150 billion, according to a CNBC report. Based on an internal document obtained by CNBC, SpaceX has an arrangement with its investors to sell up to $750 million in stock at $81 per share. SpaceX last sold stock at $77 per share.


Musk, who was among those that called for a six-month pause on the development of larger artificial intelligence models, co-founded OpenAI in 2015. He stepped down from the company’s board in 2018 and said in 2019 that he parted “on good terms” with OpenAI in order to focus his time on Tesla.

Musk, who has since been critical of OpenAI’s relationship with Microsoft, said in April that he was going to launch an AI company to rival Microsoft and Google.

“It does seem weird that something can be a non-profit, open source and somehow transform itself into a for-profit, closed source,” he said of OpenAI in a May interview with CNBC. This would be like, let’s say you found an organization to save the Amazon rainforest, and instead they become a lumber company, and chop down the forest, and sold it for money.”

The rollout, which saw some creators earning tens of thousands of dollars, gave creators a very concrete reason not to jump ship for Meta’s Threads.

At the same time, Threads’ engagement and user retention has seemingly dropped. SensorTower told CNBC that on July 10 and 11, the platform’s daily active users had dropped about 20% from July 8. The amount of time each user spent on the platform dropped by half.

“These early returns signal that despite the hoopla during its launch, it will still be an uphill climb for Threads to carve out space in most users’ social network routine,” SensorTower’s managing director, Anthony Bartolacci, said.

The Lawsuits

In the midst of this Twitter vs. Threads story blossomed a different Twitter offshoot. On July 12, a new class action lawsuit was filed against Twitter for not paying out a minimum of $500 million in severance pay. And on July 13, Twitter sued four IP addresses in Texas for allegedly attempting to scrape “every tweet ever made” in a data-scraping effort that Musk said caused Twitter’s recent rate limits.


Tesla, according to a new study by Auto Trader, is the most-wanted car brand in the U.S. and the world.

In the same spaces — which he hosted on the same day he announced xAI — Musk discussed AI and AI safety, saying that he thinks AI “is going to be pro-humanity from the standpoint that humanity is just much more interesting than not humanity.”

Though he is keen to provide a rival option to Google and Microsoft, Musk said that he was “somewhat reluctant” to jump into the sector because of his mounting concern over the “immense power of a digital super intelligence.”

“Even if the AI is extremely benign, the question of relevance comes up. If it can do anything better than any human well, what’s the point of existing? ” Musk said, adding that, if this goes well, the future will be one with “no shortage of goods and services.”

“I think it’s actually important for us to worry about a “Terminator” future in order to avoid a “Terminator” future. I am an advocate of having some sort of regulatory oversight,” he said. “I would be surprised if there is not digital super intelligence in roughly the five or six-year timeframe.”

“If this was a Netflix series, I’d say the season finale would be a showdown between the West and China and the series finale would be AGI.”

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