Between space rockets, electric cars, solar batteries, research into killer robots, and the billions he’s made along the way, Elon Musk is a successful business magnate.
And this year has been no different, what with his plans to provide solar energy to Puerto Rico, building the world’s largest battery in South Australia (for which he won a $50 million bet), launching a recycled Falcon 9 rocket, and kickstarting The Boring Company.
But have you ever wondered what Elon Musk’s biggest milestones are? RS Components have taken a look at his most popular Google search interests over time, and found what stories drove interest in Musk throughout the years. The Google trend graphs reveal spikes as people searched for his name to find out more about his latest achievement.
One of the biggest pikes in traffic was in 2013, when Elon Musk unveiled plans for the Hyperloop transport system. At the time he said it would be a cross between ‘Concorde and a railgun and an air hockey table.’ Musk published a white paper outlining his 800-mile-per-hour transportation tube concept. Musk claimed the system could transport passengers from San Francisco to Los Angeles in half an hour. Two Los Angeles-based startups currently working to make the concept a reality are Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and competitor Hyperloop Technologies.
Another noticeable milestone was when SpaceX landed its Falcon 9 rocket on a drone ship at sea. And more recently, in 2017, when SpaceX successfully launched and landed a recycled rocket, a first for Elon Musk’s company and a move that could help slash the cost of cargo transport into space. He said at the time, “It’s an amazing day I think for space as a whole, something can be done that many people said was impossible.”
And who can forget the very public spat between him and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg? Elon Musk said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s understanding of the future of artificial intelligence (AI) is “limited”. Musk was responding to a comment by Zuckerberg in which he said the Tesla CEO’s doomsday view of AI is “pretty irresponsible”. The public spat not only saw a flurry of search interest on the internet, but also showed the disagreement in the tech community over the impact of future technology.
But the one that drove the most traffic of the past year? April 24, when he revealed his relationship with Amber Heard. Musk and Heard announced their partnership over Instagram, with romantic photos of the pair sharing a meal at a restaurant on Australia’s Gold Coast. The relationship didn’t last too long, though, with the pair breaking up in August.
A business magnate, entrepreneur, investor, engineer and inventor, Musk has been quoted as saying his driving goals in life revolve around his vision to change the world and humanity – After all, he said he won’t be happy until we’ve escaped Earth and colonised Mars.
Just what will Musk do next?
You can view the graphic here.