On Musk with Walter Isaacson

On Musk with Walter Isaacson

What is it like to shadow Elon Musk for two years? To sit courtside as he builds a rocket? Or tears apart an engineer? Or couch surfs at the homes of billionaires? And how on earth do you make sense of it all? Walter Isaacson is the biographer of giants: DaVinci, Franklin, Doudna, Jobs...and now Musk, former enfante terrible, rocket launcher, electric car innovator, and Twitter—er, X—disruptor, to put it gently. In this four part series, author Evan Ratliff (Mastermind, Longform Podcast) sits down with Isaacson to draw out the behind-the-scenes stories of this epic biography, and what the writer has learned as an outsider inside Silicon Valley.


December 5, 2023 3 mins

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Mark as Played

Space travel, electric vehicles, future-powering batteries—the ability to push technology forward and to bring it into the world in a real way is without a doubt the best of Elon Musk. In his 600 page biography, Walter Isaacson chronicles a man with superlative engineering skills, but who “doesn’t have a fingertip feel for social emotional networks.” On this first of four episodes, Isaacson shares the aspects of Musk that gave mean...

Mark as Played
December 12, 2023 42 mins

What kind of titan of industry has a "giddy mode"? Or a "demon mode"? The two aspects of Musk’s personality are forces that drive his choices and behavior at work—and vectors Isaacson finds critical to understanding how Musk operates. From ripping out servers on Christmas Eve on a whim to buying Twitter against better wisdom, and reaming out staff members left right and center, we stare into the darker parts of Musk as chronicled b...

Mark as Played
December 12, 2023 44 mins

Be a storyteller, not a preacher. That was novelist Walker Percy’s legendary advice to a young Walter Isaacson. One he takes to heart in his work as a journalist at Time and CNN, and as a biographer of creative genius across the centuries—and in trying to capture someone as volatile as Elon Musk. He reflects on the challenges of holding the complexity of a character in his mind—and the minds of readers—in the modern age, when every...

Mark as Played
December 12, 2023 43 mins

Which of Musk’s efforts will mark his legacy? Will it be Starship and his work bringing Americans back into orbit, or will it be X and his amplifications of the worst of humanity? Isaacson wrestles with his time in Silicon Valley, and relays a comparison of Jobs and Musk that’s sure to stay with you. 

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Mark as Played

Popular Podcasts

    Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

    2. Amy and T.J. Podcast

    "Amy and T.J." is hosted by renowned television news anchors Amy Robach and T. J. Holmes. Hosts and executive producers Robach and Holmes are a formidable broadcasting team with decades of experience delivering headline news and captivating viewers nationwide. Now, the duo will get behind the microphone to explore meaningful conversations about current events, pop culture and everything in between. Nothing is off limits. “Amy & T.J.” is guaranteed to be informative, entertaining and above all, authentic. It marks the first time Robach and Holmes speak publicly since their own names became a part of the headlines. Follow @ajrobach, and @officialtjholmes on Instagram for updates.

    3. The Dan Bongino Show

    He’s a former Secret Service Agent, former NYPD officer, and New York Times best-selling author. Join Dan Bongino each weekday as he tackles the hottest political issues, debunking both liberal and Republican establishment rhetoric.

    4. The Bobby Bones Show

    Listen to 'The Bobby Bones Show' by downloading the daily full replay.

    5. Stuff You Should Know

    If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks, then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

Advertise With Us
Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.


© 2024 iHeartMedia, Inc.