2017 promises to end for Tesla coming down on positive side of that production slope for Model 3. Have you noticed the periodic buzz reports of inventory being spotted here and there? Recently though it's all about the semi. Preorders are rolling in and this is looking like a repeat of Model 3's introduction to the public. As of late last week Tesla has received semi orders from Sysco Wal-Mart and Anheuser Busch. That's tremendous confidence in the electric vehicle company's brand and recognition by commercial industry that EVs are the future. A sustainable energy future is happening right now. Let's not forget the Roadster 2 effect. There's something to appeal to everyone. I'm calling the new Roadster's acceleration rate makes it a progression in above road domestic vehicle travel capability. Dreaming in behemoth or plain delusional? Elon Musk confirms Tesla will, in fact, develop it's own AI chip for autopilot. Haven't I said it? SpaceX has been conservative on making public announcements and confirmations of next launches. Particularly those previously set to close out 2017 schedule. CRS-13 launch (SpaceX' sixth cargo resupply mission to the ISS) after a couple of date resets is still targeted by both SpaceX and NASA as a go for December 12. This will be a first. As Elon Musk shared on Instagram last week, it's the space exploration company's first attempt at reflying both a rocket and spacecraft simultaneously. SpaceX tweeted both, Falcon 9 and Dragon have been flight proven. Makes me smile. Hope it doesn't morph to an expression of shock and awe. Little pre flight check launch darth humor there. Clears throat. Moving on to other goings on. Okay so let's say you get past application process. Resume receives panel nod. Call comes in for phone interviews. Yes, that's plural. You successfully move forward from there in the process to be invited inside Tesla or SpaceX for face-to-face interviews. At this point you're figuring after all those phone screenings they're impressed right? Maybe, maybe not. It's not a done deal until. Apparently Elon Musk still insists on sitting in. If you make it through first rounds. Having gone through several panel interviews over course of my career, a recent much like Tesla and SpaceX recruitment experience, it is designed for companies to assure getting best person for the exact position. For some it might seem over the top but in today's technological environment where stakes are getting higher and higher, innovators like Tesla and SpaceX cannot afford to hire the wrong person for the job. People can make themselves look awfully great on paper. A robust screening and interview process rules out fluff and allows management to determine who amongst most qualified candidate pool is the best person for the task at hand. Keep in mind it's not entirely about knowing everything more than it is being able to clearly communicate what you already do know. Your proven capabilities. Here's Elon Musk's reading list. Know for a fact there's at least one recommended addition to the list. Subject matter AI. Musk has a six step interview approach. It seems to be working. Go to careers on Tesla and SpaceX if you think you've got the right stuff. Be ready to prove it. And should you be told at any point during the process, "Why are you here." Interview over. I have been told that experienced astronauts are among the greatest human beings ever. Considering how often I have dealt with vicious people. Cutthroats. Backstabbers. Maneaters. Womanhaters. Those always wanting you to acknowledge how smart they are. Others needing you to feed their fears. On and on. We're all just human and nothing makes us know that more than feeling our smallness in the expanse of that which is incomprehensible. Both nature and space are greatest teachers of just how fragile we are in grand scheme. For me being in or before large bodies of water does it. Astronauts experience stellar vastness of space. Here's a great read. How an astronaut finds humility in exploration of the, for now, reachable parts of the Universe. Til next post... *Postnote: On a much more personal note I have seen articles criticizing efforts and motives of SpaceX/Tesla leadership. While my writing style sometimes lends itself to fangirl nostalgia it is rooted in the knowledge that sustainable energy futures and space exploration are truly worthwhile passions to pursue. I avoid the term cause or goal because these are easy to pen. Passions are difficult to follow. Mission most difficult to adhere to. Growing up I always maintained an avid interest in science. Absolutely loved field trips to Richmond's Math and Science Center. Did not ever think I could have a career in either. Often discouraged or turned off by smarter than thou mentalities. Attitudes which also made me stop short of upper management roles in business. I am only recently learning Tesla SpaceX or Elon Musk existed. First thing I researched was what he reads. "As a man thinks so is he." What I say is coming from the most sincere place inside my soul. Coming into knowledge of Musk and what he's been fortunate to accomplish has rekindled that spark for science. I am not putting him on a pedestal. He is obviously only human, who like many of us, has flaws to be hammered out. What I am trying to get across is as brilliant as Musk is he doesn't talk over your intellect. I find him to be a lot like a teacher of the highest caliber. Listening to him I can see (I'm a visual show me learner) the practicality of physics statistical analytics and mathematics. Coupled with my working career experience it all makes sense. Back building on academic foundation has me revisiting subjects I either avoided or struggled with. MBA level courses will be hard work. Perhaps most challenging I've ever had but well worth it. My level of effort put in is what I expect to get out of it. Holds true for any pursuit in life.