Friday, May 2, 2008

Be like Edison, not Tesla

I read an interview with Larry Page, Google co-founder, in Fortune magazine. I thought this comment really hit home:

"You don't want to be Tesla. He was one of the greatest inventors, but it's a sad, sad story. He couldn't commercialize anything, he could barely fund his own research. You'd want to be more like Edison. If you invent something, that doesn't necessarily help anybody. You've got to actually get it into the world; you've got to produce, make money doing it so you can fund it."

This is great advice for anyone who is creating great technology. The reason behind doing it in the first place should be to get it out there. Totally agree, Larry!

Many more great thoughts in the interview, go take a look:


Stephen Fleming said...

One of my favorite facts about Edison is that, not only did he invent the light bulb... he invented General Electric!

That's the reason I was happy to name our new Georgia Tech Edison Fund after him.

Anonymous said...

What Larry Page is referring to is "dumbing down" the potential genius of our progenitors, as well as our future inheritance. Tesla was a much brighter person than Page gives him credit for. Edison never paid Tesla for the work Tesla did, even though Edison promised. This makes Edison a liar. Unfortunately in today's economy, Page is saying that liars are the best innovators, which is itself a lie.

Financiers are "headless horsemen" when it comes to raw genius.


Anonymous said...

Please keep in mind that if it wasn't for Tesla's success and generous donation, George Westinghouse would not have been able to continue with his business.

Plus, I think it is quite a shame that children's textbooks don't mention Tesla being responsible for the popularity of alternating current, as useful as it is.