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Technology & Innovation

Bow Down to Elon Musk, Our Benevolent Internet Overlord

SpaceX has asked permission to establish a system of satellites to deliver worldwide Internet to all regions. Time Warner and Comcast: You are officially on notice.

SpaceX has asked the Federal Communications Commission for permission to establish a system of satellites to deliver worldwide Internet to all of Earth’s regions.

Jeez, Elon Musk. Wouldn’t hurt for you to be a little more ambitious, would it?

Here’s IBT‘s Jeff Stone describing the plan:

“Musk first revealed his company’s plan during a SpaceX event in January, though he didn’t formally request authorization from the FCC until last month (the news was first revealed Wednesday by the Washington Post). The plan centers around the idea that SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket would launch into orbit, then deploy a fleet of satellites that broadcast Internet signals to various points across the globe…

Musk said during a speech in January that a project of this magnitude would ‘be a real enabler for people in poorer regions of the world’ as well as help improve the Internet in the U.S., ‘where people are stuck with Time Warner or Comcast.’

Elon, my dear prince, you have answered my prayer. Here’s a direct quote from a piece I wrote a couple months ago about Musk’s announcement that his electric car company Tesla would be creating a line of home batteries:

And while Finley mentions Tesla could soon be supplying batteries to utility companies, it wouldn’t be a shock to see the company move forward in an effort to disrupt the power industry as a whole.

(If so: Please Elon, slay Time Warner and Comcast after you take on my local power company).

While you’re at it, Elon, I’d love it if you could somehow make ISIS go away. And lower the price of chocolate. And world peace too, if you’ve got the time.

All joking aside, Musk remains the most interesting man in science entrepreneurship. The only thing more amazing than his bold ambitions is that we as a public remain so confident in him. Maybe he’s got EP; maybe we just want something to believe in. But Musk’s track record so far implies that we’re not too crazy in giving him the benefit of the doubt. All we can hope for is that he doesn’t go full-Bond villain on us, because sooner or later Musk’s going to have all the toys. Let’s hope he remains on the path which necessitates good use of them.

As for worldwide Internet service, the implications are astounding to think about. Entire impoverished regions connected to the world economy, just like that. Infrastructure upkeep would be limited to maintaining satellite receptors. Tech egalitarianism would be closer than ever to reality. It could be a tremendous future. Let’s hope it is.

Read more about Musk’s plans for worldwide internet at IBT.

Below, Musk discusses the founding of SpaceX in a Big Think+ preview clip.

Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images


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