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  • Writer's pictureCanal Sonho Grande

8 Books Recommended by Elon Musk: Billionaire Founder of Tesla and SpaceX

Discover 8 books recommended by Elon Musk, entrepreneur founder of Tesla and SpaceX who has more than US$ 215 billion according to Forbes (12/06/22).


Post: Discover the history of Tesla, one of the largest automakers in the world.


Instead of recommending just business books, Elon Musk recommends books of the most different types, especially those that talk about the future. A future that he is certainly helping to build through his companies, such as:


Tesla: manufacturer of electric cars. Learn about the history of this automaker, which is one of the largest in the world.

  • SpaceX: 1st private company to build a spaceship and take people into space

  • Hyperloop: means of transport that aims to take people over long distances up to 1,200 kilometers per hour (km/h);

  • Neuralink: developer of chips that could be implanted in the brains of human beings, allowing direct interaction with computers and treatment of quadriplegic people and diseases such as Alzheimer's;

  • Starlink: Provides quality internet access in remote locations, such as rural areas;

  • The Boring Company: Infrastructure and tunnel construction company;

  • SolarCity: Company that creates solutions for storing renewable electricity.

As we can see, Elon Musk is not just any person. When asked how he learned to build rockets, he replied:


"I read books".

And now, let's get to know 8 books recommended by this great entrepreneur!


1. Superintelligence


Recommended by Elon Musk and Bill Gates, the book Superintelligence seeks to answer whether it will be possible to build an artificial intelligence (also known as AI), which is sustainable and does not imply the end of our species.


As much as it seems a bit extreme thinking, considering the many benefits generated today through artificial intelligence, the author deconstructs the thought that this will certainly remain in the future.


The question is raised whether artificial intelligence follows the evolutionary pattern of the human species and whether it is capable of replicating our mind. If this is possible, the potential of this superintelligence will be unimaginable and possibly uncontrollable depending on the situation.


Therefore, if it is not possible for the superintelligence to associate human values to its decisions, bad measures can be taken by it and that harm human well-being.


2. Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence


In this book, Max Tegmark, professor at MIT, describes advances in artificial intelligence and shows how it can affect our lives in different ways.


AI already automates and will certainly automate even more tasks. The author reflects on how we can build a more prosperous future through automation without leaving people without income or purpose.


Furthermore, as more complex problems try to be solved through AI, even more robust systems will be needed. How are we going to build them so that they work correctly and without risk of being hacked?


Max also presents relevant reflections regarding the risks of using autonomous weapons in wars and also the development of an AI so intelligent that we can lose control.


Like the book Superintelligence, Life 3.0 brings very relevant points regarding the impact of AI on our lives.


3 e 4. Steve Jobs and Benjamin Franklin Biography


Elon musk said during an interview that he really enjoys reading biographies. He believes that several lessons can be drawn from this type of reading.


Two biographies cited by the businessman, both written by Walter Isaacson, were Steve Jobs and Benjamin Franklin.


Steve Jobs as we all know, founded Apple, a company currently with a market value of more than 2.1 trillion dollars.


Benjamin Franklin was one of the greatest names in American history. He actively participated in the independence of the United States, in addition to having contributions as a scientist, such as the creation of lightning rods and bifocal lenses.


5. Zero to one


"Peter Thiel has built several innovative companies, and 'From Zero to One' shows how." This is how Elon Musk described the book written by the investor with an estimated fortune of $4.9 billion according to Forbes in 2021.


Peter was one of the founders of Paypal and also an early investor in Facebook.


In the book, the author presents the concept of zero to one. He says that companies that do more of the same, go from 1 to n, while the really innovative ones from 0 to 1. These are the companies that really solve a single problem or in a unique way and that achieve much greater profits than the others and manage to keep its hegemony and growth.


6. Merchants of Doubt


Merchants of Doubt tells the story of how a group of scientists with deep connections in politics and industry conducted campaigns to deceive the public and deny scientific knowledge from the negative effects of smoking to the veracity of global warming.


These malicious scientists gained space in the media, spreading doubts about already established themes. Even funding programs were also used to encourage research that would generate uncertainty and skepticism in people, promoting a fight of science against science.


For those curious about which books helped Elon Musk learn to build rockets, the top two books on the topic are:


7. Structures: Or Why Things Don't Fall Down


Elon Musk used this book to understand rocket structural design. That's what made him understand the basics of the science that helped him develop SpaceX. Musk said in a US radio interview:


"It's really, really good if you want a primer on structural design,"

8. Ignition: An Informal History of Liquid Rocket Propellants


The author, John D. Clark was an American chemist active in the development of rocket fuel in the 1960s and 1970s. Musk says he used the lessons from the work when he was producing SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket system.

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