偶尔看到Quora上的一个提问:How did Elon Musk learn enough about rockets to create and run SpaceX?

排名第一的回答是Jim Cantrell,他是SpaceX的创始人之一。

So I am going to suggest that he is successful not because his visions are grand, not because he is extraordinarily smart and not because he works incredibly hard. All of those things are true. The one major important distinction that sets him apart is his inability to consider failure. It simply is not even in his thought process. He cannot conceive of failure and that is truly remarkable. It doesn’t matter if its going up against the banking system (Paypal), going up against the entire aerospace industry (SpaceX) or going up against the US auto industry (Tesla). He can’t imagine NOT succeeding and that is a very critical trait that leads him ultimately to success. He and I had very similar upbringings, very similar interests and very similar early histories. He was a bit of a loner and so was I. He decided to start a software company at age 13. I decided to design and build my own stereo amplifier system at age 13. Both of us succeeded at it. We both had engineers for fathers and were extremely driven kids. What separated us, I believe, was his lack of even being able to conceive failure. I know this because this is where we parted ways at SpaceX. We got to a point where I could not see it succeeding and walked away. He didn’t and succeeded. I have 25 years experience building space hardware and he had none at the time. So much for experience. (Jim Cantrell, President and chief executive of Strategic Space Development, an aerospace and technology consulting firm based in Tucson, Ariz.)

远见、聪明、努力、经验,这些必不可少,却都不是最重要的。最重要的是“没有失败”的理念,马斯克认为从他的“第一原理”出发,如果没有方向性的错误,剩下的就只是分解问题、解决问题和“抓紧时间干”了。

如果你看看各个星舰爆炸的原因,看看风险清单,所有这些原因都不在事先列出的风险清单上。快速迭代催生了大量的新技术,星舰正在消除所有的未知风险。(Elon Musk, 《目标火星:SpaceX变革载人航天之路》

他的“第一原理”是从哪里来的?那就是排名第二的回答(Michael Simmons):

He spent many years reading 60 times as much as an avid reader.

He read widely across different disciplines.

He constantly applied what he learned by deconstructing ideas into their fundamental principles and reconstructing them in new ways.

大量、广泛的阅读使他能够把不同学科之间的东西融汇贯通,既是专家,又有比专家更宽更广的眼界,能够抓住最关键的问题,找到最基础的“第一原理”。

He can almost smell the right way through a problem and he drives his staff and his organization hard to achieve it. (Jim Cantrell)

这简直是一种神秘的超能力。

最后,马斯克都会读哪些书呢?

At first, Musk’s reading spanned science fiction, philosophy, religion, programming, and biographies of scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs. As he got older, his reading and career interests spread to physics, engineering, product design, business, technology, and energy. (Michael Simmons)


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