Last week Mark Zuckerberg took his little Harvard project public in the largest tech IPO ever and quickly followed it up by marrying his Harvard sweetheart. However, the honeymoon was cut short as the Facebook stock has yet to impress.
Meanwhile, the tech world’s equivalent of Tony Stark, announced via Twitter yesterday that the Tesla cars were approved for sale to the public after passing the necessary federal crash tests. That announcement was followed up this morning with SpaceX becoming the first privately owned company to launch a rocket destined to dock with the International Space Station. So then the question becomes whether or not launching a rocket combined with a major milestone in a separate company outshines taking Facebook public. In my book, rockets and fast cars win every time.
Musk’s car company is on a tear lately. Tesla announced in early May that it was on-track to deliver the Model S to customers next month, a full month prior to the original July rollout (June 22nd according to today’s press release). Then, a few days later, Tesla revealed that it will begin repaying the $465 million by the end of the year which would make the auto company the first startup to begin repayment.
Falcon flew perfectly!! Dragon in orbit, comm locked and solar arrays active!! Feels like a giant weight just came off my back :)— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 22, 2012
Dragon spaceship opens the navigation pod bay door without hesitation. So much nicer than HAL9000 :) #DragonLaunch— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 22, 2012
SpaceX, one of Musk’s other ventures, had an impressive milestone of its own today, becoming the first privately-owned space company to launch a rocket headed for the ISS. History will no doubt forget that this event happened a few days late. The rocket was supposed to launch on Sunday, May 19th but the launch was aborted with a half a second left on the countdown clock. The rocket’s automated systems flagged abnormal pressure in one of the engines and automatically killed the launch, which would have likely caused a catastrophe.