The best “clue” for what Elon Musk was up to at his Pentagon meeting came from, as per usual, the man’s Twitter. In response to a CNN article musing over his mysterious visit, the SpaceX founder tweeted that it had something to do with a flying metal suit. Clearly, he’s not mad at Tony Stark comparisons.
The funny thing about the billionaire (who, when asked if he “likes being referred to as billionaire Elon Musk” replied “no”) is that he’s been successful enough with ideas like SpaceX and Tesla that all his other ideas (like Mars colonisation or that we’re living in a video game) seem to be more plausible. The tweet could be only an Iron Man joke, or it could be not too far off, especially since various companies and the US government have been working on exoskeletons for a while.
We do know that Musk met with Secretary of Defence Ash Carter on Wednesday to discuss the ever-vague buzzword of “innovation”, according to a Department of Defence spokesperson.
The visit isn’t a surprise given that Carter has been interested in connecting government and the private technology sector (even creating an advisory board chaired by Alphabet’s Eric Schmidt) and that Musk has been trying to win more business for SpaceX (and already has a contact with the Air Force). And hey, if the US Department of Defence is going to be building flying exoskeletons, Musk is probably the man to do it.