Shoot for the moon, and if you miss you’ll at least end up with the stars. Google’s Larry Page and Eric Schmidt take this very literally with their investments in Planetary Resources Inc.. The new company plans to spend millions of dollars on mining. Not in your traditional mining areas such as Wyoming or West Virginia: Planetary Resources has made it its goal to find precious metals and rare metallic elements on near-Earth asteroids.
Those are not the only crazy ideas tech billionaires have ever come up with or supported. The LA Times names some of the interesting inventions that came into existence over the past couple of years.
Amazon-founder Jeff Bezos invested $42 million in a clock that will keep ticking for 10,000 years. Nice gadget for his grand-grand-grand-grand-children. Bezos sees it as ‘s symbol of the power of long-term thinking’. He hopes it will change the way humanity thinks about time, so that people take up a longer view.
Google owns a lab called ‘Google X’, with 100 highly ambitious ideas. No one knows what exactly Google is doing there, and most of the ideas are in the conceptual stage. The company changed its mission from ‘organizing the world’s information’ to ‘driving technology forward’ – which coincides perfectly with the self-driving car the search giant is currently testing and developing.
Paul Allen, Microsoft’s co-founder, spent more than $30 million on the Allen Telescope Array. Its use? Monitoring the universe for radio waves that would indicate there’s life on other planets.
Of course these entrepreneurs have always thought big, and that is exactly how they became big (and made big money). Whether you develop a dog iPhone app or want to learn how to fly, think out of the box. It might just get you where you didn’t even know you wanted to go.