Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Running out of snarky Musk titles

I know we've covered this before, but this is such an apt example of how Elon Musk still doesn't get engineering, despite being surrounded by some of the most brilliant people in the fields of aerospace, transportation and artificial intelligence. They spend endless hours briefing him on technical subjects, and as long as he stays on script, he seems to grasp the concepts. The moment he starts to ad lib, however, his lack of comprehension becomes painful to watch.

There is a certain mindset that you find in pretty much all fields of applied mathematics (engineering, statistics, computer science, etc.), at least among the competent. It's a tendency to think in terms of complex systems, ranges,constraints,  trade-offs. Musk does exactly the opposite. He seems to believe that evaluating a design is done by taking a bunch of numbers, picking the best ones and shoving them together.

This wouldn't be so bad if Elon Musk were just another clueless CEO, but the myth of the real life Tony Stark has been so internalized by journalists, investors and politicians that it has started to warp our discourse and decision making.

No comments:

Post a Comment