🥳It’s Elon Musk’s birthday — these stories helped define his 50th year

Musk Reads #253

To celebrate the holiday week (and Elon Musk’s birthday today, happy 50th!), Musk Reads is taking a break from its regularly scheduled weekly news. Instead, we’re looking back at the 10 most quintessential Musk Reads+ issues so far. Join us as we revisit the can’t-miss stories, jaw-dropping reveals, and stunning visions of the future. 

And tell us what you think about them! Do you want to know more about Blue Origin and other space launch competitors? Find yourself pondering how green Tesla really is? Do you lie awake at night wishing someone would finally explain that weird thing you saw on Musk’s Twitter last week? We love answering your questions on all things Musk related. Send them to us at muskreads@inverse.com or comment on this post.

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Musk Reads quote of the week

It'll be fun to watch these two duke it out over the next couple of decades.” — Journalist Brad Stone told Inverse about the feuding billionaires Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos


10: Josh Giegel predicts when you'll ride Hyperloop

In December 2020, Musk Reads+ spoke to Virgin Hyperloop co-founder Josh Giegel about the high-speed train that might bring you “Amazon Prime on steroids.” The electric-powered Hyperloop, which is made up of “pods” zooming in a vacuum-sealed chamber, could ameliorate the transportation industry’s giant carbon footprint, transform freight shipping, and bring the country closer together faster than ever. If you ask Giegel, he’d like to make all that happen by 2025.  

9: SpaceX: Here’s how to attend a rocket launch

There isn’t much else that captures the human capacity for imagination and exploration like a rocket tearing up the sky. According to Supercluster editor-in-chief Robin Seemangel, even the act of watching a launch is “life-changing.” This April, Musk Reads+ created a complete guide for how to attend a SpaceX rocket launch and what you should expect once you’re there. Go ahead, change your life.  

8: Tesla cheese: How one farmer is fighting for zero emissions

Winterdale cheese farm owner Robin Betts spoke to Musk Reads+ in May about how he’s using his 500-year-old farm as a small stone in the path to global clean energy. 

Spoiler: his approach involves two Tesla products and a whole lot of milk. 

7: What SpaceX’s untold story reveals about NASA and Mars

Musk Reads+ revisits the early cutthroat days of SpaceX and, according to writer and rocket fan Eric Berger, how the company rose to prominence despite the picked fights, unclear goals, and all the laws holding it back. “When [Elon Musk] thinks he's right, he thinks he's right, and he's going to charge ahead,” Berger said. The question is, how far will he go?

6: Starlink beta impressions: What a cybersecurity expert thinks

SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet service is fast, giving speedy internet from a plot of sky near you. But it’s not only fast — a former U.S. Army cyber operations specialist got into the nitty-gritty of his snowy Starlink experience with Musk Reads+ in March.


Last week, Musk Reads+ subscribers heard from astronaut Leland Melvin about how laundry detergent could power the Mars mission. This week, readers will hear from the team behind Space Hero about how their reality show could send you to the International Space Station

Don’t miss out — new members receive instant access to our ever-expanding archive, future premium issues, and much more. Subscribe to Musk Reads+.


5: How to get Tesla Solar Roof in your area: 3 tips from an owner

Although the Tesla Solar Roof to this day stores broken promises and lawsuit-inducing costs within its tempered glass, Musk hasn’t given up on it, and maybe you shouldn’t either. In March, Musk Reads+ spoke to a Solar Roof owner about his quest to install the world’s most pain-in-the-ass roof and the importance of not giving up. 

4: How a Mars “spy satellite” engineer tracked Musk’s Tesla Roadster

Tesla’s Roadster in space is one of those things you have to see to believe. Once you see it, you, like Musk, might feel like you’re “trippin' balls here.” Alternatively, you could develop the insatiable need to find out where the infinitely flying car is at any given moment. Luckily, there’s a website for that.

3: Giant Tesla Solar Roof: the story behind the viral video

Just like Musk, we at Musk Reads+ can’t wriggle the slippery Solar Roof out of our heads quite yet. And neither can real estate developer Tony Cho, whose Florida resort is home to fire pits, manatees, and, oh yeah, the largest Tesla Solar Roof ever. 

2: Tesla Energy Plan: Video shows fairytale-like home powered by solar

Cho joins a list of renovation experts who make the Tesla Solar Roof power houses out of their wildest, most eco-friendly dreams. Architect Richard Hawkes, for example, uses the Solar Roof to return to what he identifies as a Victorian sensibility, stamping out the modern impulse to wander around in our “[under]pants and T-shirt in the middle of winter.”

1: Blue Origin vs. SpaceX: How Bezos fell behind

Billionaires competing for the chance to eat dehydrated spaghetti light-years away from Earth sounds, at this point, as natural as the weather forecast. But, since Jeff Bezos now seems to be at the forefront of that competition, do you know how we got here in the first place? Author Brad Stone has a few ideas. This June, he spoke to Musk Reads+ about Jeff Bezos’ historic flight and its biggest enemy: Elon Musk.


The ultra-fine print 

This is Musk Reads+ #253, a new subscriber-only newsletter about the world of the futurist and entrepreneur Elon Musk. This was written by Mike Brown, an innovation reporter for Inverse, and Ashley Bardhan, assistant to Musk Reads.

What did you think of today’s email? Hit “reply” to this email to tell us your thoughts. Thanks for reading!