October 21, 2011 |
In 2006, when director Chris Paine released "Who Killed the Electric Car?" the story of GM's short-lived, battery-powered EV-1, the villains were many, but consumer apathy played its role. With "Revenge of the Electric Car," Paine's entertaining follow-up, top GM exec Bob Lutz gives much credit for the company's 180 to consumer outrage. Wall Street might want to take notice of how quickly tides can change. "Revenge" follows the three-way race between GM, Nissan and Silicon Valley rogues Tesla Motors to bring an electric model successfully to market by centering on the three biggest personalities involved: Lutz, Nissan head Carlos Ghosn and Elon Musk, the PayPal mogul behind Tesla who goosed GM into action with his sexy gas-free sports car. Invited "behind enemy lines" as narrator Tim Robbins intones, by GM themselves in 2007, the filmmakers gained access across the board by promising not to release the film until the cars hit showrooms in 2011.
August 12, 2013 |
It's easy for Californians to get breathless about Elon Musk's futuristic Hyperloop, considering how much bad news they've gotten about the high-speed rail line they voted for in 2008. So when Musk revealed details of his idea Monday afternoon in a blog post , Golden Staters could be forgiven for wishing they could have a do-over on that ballot initiative. But regardless of its superior coolness factor, Musk's idea faces some of the same hurdles that have been so problematic for the train project -- plus a few unique ones.
January 13, 2011 |
Hawthorne-based rocket venture Space Exploration Technologies Corp. has received $25 million from NASA since successfully launching its 18-story Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon space capsule from Cape Canaveral last month. The company, better known as SpaceX, has developed the Dragon capsule under NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services program. The spacecraft, which can carry as many as seven astronauts, is considered a contender for the multibillion-dollar job of ferrying crews to and from the International Space Station after the space shuttle is retired this year.
December 5, 2012 |
The U.S. Defense Department plans to open more than a dozen rocket launches to competition, moving to end a monopoly held by a Lockheed Martin Corp.-Boeing Co. joint venture. The Air Force is authorized to buy as many as 14 booster cores over the next five years from potential competitors such as Space Exploration Technologies Corp., the Hawthorne company known as SpaceX and headed by billionaire Elon Musk, and Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., wrote Frank Kendall, the Pentagon's top weapons buyer, in a Nov. 27 memo obtained by Bloomberg News.
April 24, 2012 |
The first launch of a private spaceship to the International Space Station has been delayed more than a week so engineers can test hardware and software, as well as review data. Space Exploration Technologies Corp., better known as SpaceX, was slated to blast off from Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday in a demonstration flight for NASA. The launch date, which has been pushed back several times already, is now set for May 7. "After reviewing our recent progress, it was clear that we needed more time to finish hardware-in-the-loop testing and properly review and follow up on all data," SpaceX spokeswoman Kirstin Brost Grantham said in statement.
May 22, 2012 |
SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket roared to life before dawn at Cape Canaveral, Fla., today and blasted into space on a column of fire that lit the night sky for miles around. The nine-engine rocket lifted off at 3:44 a.m. EDT carrying a cone-shaped space capsule that's set to berth with the International Space Station later this week. SpaceX, formally known as Space Exploration Technologies Corp., is the first private company to embark on such a mission. Up until now, sending a spacecraft to the space station has been a feat that has only been accomplished by four of the world's wealthiest and most technologically advanced governments: the United States, Russia, Japan and the European Union . The launch marked a major milestone in efforts to shift spacecraft development -- long dominated by governments and large, entrenched aerospace firms -- to privately funded firms such as SpaceX that so far have been funding their ventures largely on their own. About 10 minutes into the spaceflight, SpaceX confirmed that its gleaming, white Falcon 9 rocket had lifted the unmanned Dragon space capsule into orbit.
April 18, 2013 |
Fiction writers don't often get credit for their influence on the world -- it is often invisible and unheralded. But among those on Time magazine's annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world, released Thursday, were two surprising names: short story maven George Saunders and novelist Hilary Mantel. They keep company with "Leaders," (President Obama, Wayne LaPierre, Kim Jong Un), "Titans" (Jay-Z, LeBron James, Elon Musk) and "Icons" (Malala Yousafzai, Lena Dunham, Gabrielle Giffords)
July 9, 2013 |
Tesla Motors Inc., will join the Nasdaq 100 stock index beginning Monday to fill the spot of computer technology company Oracle Corp., which announced last month it would move to the New York Stock Exchange. Headed by Elon Musk, the billionaire also responsible for PayPal and SpaceX, Tesla manufactures high-end electric cars. The Palo Alto company's Model S sedan starts at $62,200 and can exceed $100,000 with modifications. The automaker reported selling 8,931 cars in the first half of 2013.
April 1, 2013 |
Tesla sales of its Model S electric sedan have exceeded the target that the Palo Alto-based automaker set in February, giving it enough of a boost to claim its first quarterly profit. Tesla has sold 4,750 Model S cars or about 250 more than the February target. The better than expected sales allowed Tesla to predict "full profitability" in an amendment to its guidance for first-quarter performance. After Tesla had reported a loss of $75 million in the fourth quarter, observers had expressed concerns about the automaker's ability to quickly churn out enough electric vehicles to sustain it in the long term.
July 15, 2013 |
Monday tech news kicked off with a significant price cut to the Microsoft Surface RT tablet and a report that a woman in China was electrocuted while using her iPhone. Microsoft cuts price of Surface RT by $150 Microsoft reduced the price of its Surface RT tablets this weekend by $150. It's cheapest model now starts at $349, but there are plenty of other great tablets that start around that price. Chinese woman electrocuted using iPhone A 23-year-old woman in China was reportedly killed when she answered a call on her iPhone 5 while it was plugged into the wall for recharging.