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Elon Musk has come through on his promise and released the details of his Hyperloop which I doubt I’m alone in saying is the most exciting science news released recently. The revolutionary idea is straight out of sci-fi and would be at home in futuristic movies like Minority Report the concept is, roughly speaking, a massive tube that shoots you from one city to another, at roughly 1130 km/h slightly less than the speed of sound. You might think this is just shooting ideas at the wind but he has backed it up and submitted the documentation for review, which he openly welcomes to correction by the way, a 57 page document with everything from cost considerations to construction to safety.
However, I caught a post by Carter Gibson mentioning how pessimists have already started to circle this awesome achievement. Which should grate anyone who believes in innovation. Why is it that with any great idea the haters are not far behind?
I think elon musk is a cool guy but let's not kid ourselves, this is an imaginary space train that he can just describe however he wants
— Sam Biddle (@samfbiddle) August 12, 2013
The critics are sniping at the ankles via Twitter. How nice and safe. One of them is Gawker’s Sam Biddle saying things like “It’s drawings” or “Meet me at the Hyperloop station in 2199”. It should be mentioned that this could easily be a mere troll trying to gain a ride out of people, but I doubt it. This is just another of those people we have all come across in our lives who drag you down when you are trying to reach a little further up than the rest.
These people are everywhere and some have klout and can actually stop this endeavour from getting built. When government money is involved politics takes over and they might prefer the US$70-billion version, easier to send out nice fat contracts to buddies and get a fat commission.
Jay Yarow of Business Insider writes:
Yet, without someone of Musk’s stature, and Musk’s force of will, the Hyperloop can not happen.
It will take a famous billionaire with deep connections to make something as ambitious as the Hyperloop a reality.
So, unless he can find someone to push the Hyperloop past all the skeptics, past all the political trip wires, and past all the non-technical problems, the Hyperloop isn’t going to happen.
As Richard Quest of CNN says, whether or not the Hyperloop will work isn’t the point. “Is it visionary? Will we be in our rocking chairs in 30 years time going ‘well we talked about it then but he did it’?”
See Quest speak about the hyperloop here, as well as some good illustrations of how it would work:
At the end of the day, this is a story of a guy who was upset about how something was being done and sat down to figure out a better way to do it. He didn’t heckle the from his safe keyboard, he took his own time money and expertise and went about finding a viable solution no matter how crazy it might be. When he was done he gave the idea to the world, no patents no asking for cash, none of that. Just, “Here you go world”. This is why he is Iron Man.
Don’t be the small person holding others ideas down, either be the one cheering it on and finding a way to help. Many have called Elon Musk the next Steve Jobs, so to quote another visionary, “Here’s to the crazy ones.”
Image: Elon Musk