Watch Elon Musk's 3-Part Interview with Tesla Owners Silicon Valley
Scheduling a meeting with the busiest man in the world is no easy task. Between the operations of Tesla, SpaceX, the Boring Company, Neuralink and his many-times-daily tweeting habit, Elon Musk has very little time left in the day. So, how did this interview with the Tesla CEO finally happen?
Above: Elon Musk with My Tesla Adventure's Eli Burton at Giga Texas (Photo courtesy of Eli Burton)
You guessed it — over Twitter.
Elon responded to Tesla Owners Silicon Valley at 4:30 pm on Sunday, May 29, saying, "How about tomorrow afternoon?"
How about tomorrow afternoon?— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 29, 2022
Tesla Owners Silicon Valley Club President John Stringer and VP Kelvin Gee, along with Ryan Levenson of The Kilowatts jumped on a plane that night. Meanwhile I, Eli Burton of My Tesla Adventure, left first thing the following morning.
Just after 1pm on Monday the 30th, we drove to Security at the employee entrance to Tesla's Giga Austin. We told them we were there for a 2pm interview with Elon Musk, and they directed us to pull over. I halfway expected them to call the police. But instead, they indicated that they were expecting us. After signing some NDAs, we were ushered into the building and up to the executive's office within minutes.
The hour we had to prepare went by in what felt like minutes. We had taken some bets as to how close to the meeting time Elon would arrive. My guess was a half-hour later because that's typical Elon time. I was wrong. At 2:05 pm, without pomp or circumstance, Musk walked into the meeting room that overlooked the factory and greeted us.
The first 15 minutes of the conversation accidentally turned into a tangent about chocolate and its global history. We all agreed that European chocolate was superior to American chocolate.
The interview took place in three separate parts.
For part 1, we primarily focused on the history of Tesla. We covered a lot of ground, but we also dug up some previously uncovered bits of "old lore," as Elon called it.
Elon has made it clear that he doesn't like former Tesla executive Martin Eberhart, and that it hurt him personally that this guy tried to claim credit for work undone. Take note of this lesson from Elon: if you ever join Tesla or SpaceX, don't credit yourself for someone else's work, or you won't survive.
One of the keys for me as a Tesla owner, as I think it is for many, are Tesla's Autopilot and Full Self-Driving systems. I'm lucky enough to have been in the FSD Beta Program for the last year and a half, so I've had a unique view of Autopilot's development.
So, I suggested that Elon give drivers a button to offer positive feedback when Autopilot successfully navigates a situation. Right now, a driver's only feedback method is to flag the AP team to review footage when something goes wrong. While we didn't get an immediate answer, Elon said he would think about it.
After about the two and a half hour mark, we concluded the formal interview.
Trying to be respectful to Elon's time, we attempted to end the interview so he could return to whatever business was waiting for him. However, he stayed with us, so we kept talking about all sorts of topics, including Twitter, integrity in journalism, a Plaid Model 3, and even the purpose of life.
At the end of the session, Elon was kind enough to sign a couple of pieces of memorabilia. We thanked him for his time, and he departed. We then rushed to pack up our gear because another group was already waiting to meet with Elon in that room after our meeting.
So, what was it like to interview the man who made it all possible? Honestly, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and a true honor.
You can watch parts one, two, and three of our interview with Elon Musk below.
Source: Tesla Owners Silicon Valley