Elon Musk Reacts To His 21-Year-Old Profile Calling Tesla CEO 'The Six Million Dollar Man:' 'Feels Like Aeons Ago'

Zinger Key Points
  • Elon Musk was called “The Six Million Dollar Man” 21 years ago when his space startup, SpaceX, was still in its early days.
  • SpaceX, founded 22 years ago, has undertaken 333 launches so far and has over 13,000 employees.

Tesla Inc. CEO and SpaceX founder Elon Musk had a trip down memory lane, reacting to a 21-year-old profile that called him "The Six Million Dollar Man" when the tech billionaire's space dreams were still in their infancy.

What Happened: Musk reacted to a post by DogeDesigner reminiscing his journey from the early 2000s when his space startup, SpaceX, was still years away from its first rocket launch.

"Feels like aeons ago," Musk said, reacting to a 2003 profile carried by SpaceNews.

Founded in 2002, SpaceX has recorded 333 launches so far and has over 13,000 employees. The Starship launch is its latest ambitious launch attempt.

However, 21 years ago, Musk's space startup had only 22 employees and was five years away from its first successful launch.

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He was called "The Six Million Dollar Man" for two reasons – the first draws parallels with a science fiction character, Steve Austin, who was a former astronaut and a U.S. Air Force colonel. Austin became a pop culture icon in the 1970s due to "The Six Million Dollar Man" TV show.

The other reason is Musk offered to launch small satellites for $6 million during the early days of SpaceX.

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SpaceX has since evolved as one of the leading private space companies in the world, offering its services to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA.) It is also a defense contractor and provides satellite connectivity services.

Why It Matters: One of the ultimate missions of SpaceX is to develop a sustainable colony on Mars. Musk has been vocal about this and also making humanity a space-faring civilization.

He set an ambitious Starship production goal to colonize Mars in the next three decades, likely within his lifetime.

In the same vein, Musk also criticized slow progress on the space exploration front, saying humanity should have a moon base and be among the stars. He wants to build a city on Mars in 20 years.

SpaceX's latest project, Starship, is currently being tested. After three failures, Musk revealed that the next Starship launch will take place in May.

Its success is important for NASA, which is relying on Starship to land humans on the moon once again after more than five decades.

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