That line from F. Scott Fitzgerald completely summarizes some of the oddball and strange actions we’ve seen from Seattle’s rich tech elite. By their nature, know-how entrepreneurs are a bit eccentric.
And when that’s coupled with a close to infinite provide of cash, you are able to do issues like journey to outer area or construct a clock that retains time for the following 10,000 years.
Right here’s a take a look at 5 very uncommon pursuits of Seattle tech geeks, from Jeff Bezos to Naveen Jain to Paul Allen. Tell us what you suppose, and the way would you spend your riches if you happen to had a billion or two mendacity round the home?
Naveen Jain’s lunar mission: On planet Earth, Intelius co-founder Naveen Jain mines the Web for private details about people. However the tech entrepreneur has larger plans with regards to outer area. He needs to mine the moon.
The 51-year-old entrepreneur emerged earlier this 12 months because the co-founder of Moon Specific, an organization that has already gained a $10 million NASA contract to construct automobiles that might search the lunar floor for valuable supplies.
“I consider we’re about to uncover the Moon’s many important sources together with giant portions of Platinum that may clear up Earth’s current useful resource and vitality issues and make a greater world for our youngsters and for generations to return,” Jain told GeekWire in April.
Jeff Bezos and the ten,000 12 months clock: The Amazon.com founder is constructing area rockets of his personal, and he’s even taking a look at putting airbags into cell phones. However we’re most intrigued with Bezos’ plans to bankroll the construction of a clock — set in a West Texas mountain — that may maintain time for the following 10,000 years. It’s not your odd Timex. Bezos is reportedly spending $42 million on the clock, which ticks yearly and the cuckoo comes out on the millennium.
“As I see it, people at the moment are technologically superior sufficient that we are able to create not solely extraordinary wonders but additionally civilization-scale issues. We’re more likely to want extra long-term considering,” Bezos stated in a message in regards to the clock.
Paul Allen’s seek for aliens: The Microsoft co-founder will be the most eccentric of the bunch. In spite of everything, his variety of pursuits are effectively documented, with Lesley Stahl of 60 Minutes saying this in regards to the billionaire in a profile earlier this 12 months: “I get this ‘Howard Hughesy’ really feel: the planes, Hollywood. Do you consider that ever?”
Allen owns sports activities groups, large yachts (full with a submarine) and even has his personal Russian MIG fighter jet. However how may we overlook Allen’s ardour for locating alien life? Allen, together with former Microsoft CTO Nathan Myhrvold, is one of the first backers of SETI Institute which is on the prowl for extraterrestrial life kinds.
“It’s a really, very lengthy shot, and in the event that they do hear one thing, they’re speculated to name me,” Allen instructed GeekWire’s Todd Bishop in an interview at City Corridor earlier this 12 months. “However my Blackberry, nothing. It’s not even vibrating. No, think about how all of our lives could be stimulated and altered if there have been different societies on the market past our photo voltaic system. It’s a really, very lengthy shot. However I assumed it was price it.”
Nathan Myhrvold’s cookbook: The six-volume tome from the previous Microsoft CTO and Mental Ventures co-founder weighs a powerful 40 kilos and contains greater than 1,500 recipes and a pair of,438 pages. Myhrvold — who spent between $1 million and $10 million publishing the e book — likes to boast that the complete set of the Modernist Cuisine accommodates almost 4 kilos of ink.
You’ll be able to learn the way Myhrvold and his scientifically-inspired cooks make French fries with a “mild and fluffy interior and a delicate, crisp crust” that don’t get soggy or an omelet that’s “mild and tender on the outfacet however rich and creamy inside.”
BusinessWeek called it the “most elaborate and sophisticated e book ever written,” whereas The New York Times noted that it “is nearly an encyclopedia of cooking, a visible curler coaster via the world of meals and cooking instruments.”
Invoice Gates’ plan to regulate the climate: Invoice G is greatest identified for his philanthropic efforts to enhance the well being of some of the world’s poorest individuals, and as half of that marketing campaign we considered together with the $42 million he’s donating to reinvent the toilet. It’s a noble trigger, with Gates’ basis noting that “billions of individuals lack a protected, dependable bathroom or latrine.” However, in phrases of the actually wacky and offbeat, we traveled again in time a bit to a patent filed by Gates, Mhyrvold and others to suppress hurricanes through the use of a fleet of boats which might combine hotter ocean water on the floor with colder water discovered at higher depths.
In keeping with the patent application: “The strategy contains figuring out a placement of at the very least one vessel succesful of transferring water to decrease depths within the water by way of wave induced downwelling.” When the patent first got here to mild, a quantity of scientists tossed chilly water on the idea, and a few warned that people had been better off not trying to alter powerful forces of nature similar to hurricanes.
So, there you will have it, our high 5 weird pursuits of rich tech geeks. Who did we overlook? And what’s essentially the most uncommon mission you’ve seen from the thoughts of some tech geek?