Skip to Content

22 Interesting Facts About Billionaire Elon Musk You Might Not Know

Sharing is caring!

Elon Musk has become a household name in the past several years due to his innovation, scientific endeavors, being outspoken against other billionaire moguls, and his all-around guts when it comes to his business dealings. He has done everything from launching things into space to dreaming up a network of high-speed underground tunnels. Musk’s endeavors are as bold as they are groundbreaking. 

He’s also a man of profound mystery, and there is a lot that we don’t know about him. Beyond the headlines and hyperdrive lies a man of profound complexity and intriguing paradoxes. Do you think you know it all? 

1. Musk Was A Child Prodigy Programmer

cccccf 2023 10 25T220305.451
Photo Credit:

Elon Musk’s journey into the business world began astonishingly early. At the tender age of 12, Musk didn’t just dream of creating; he actually designed and sold a video game called Blastar to a computer magazine for approximately $500. 

2. Musk Has Multinational Roots 

A girl holding a map and using pen to mark locations
Photo Credit:

Born on June 28, 1971, in Pretoria, South Africa, Elon Musk’s heritage is as diverse as his interests. He is the son of a South African electromechanical engineer and a Canadian model and dietitian.

3. Musk Taught Himself Programming

confused coworker computers desk
Photo Credit:

Elon Musk’s venture into programming wasn’t through formal education but through self-teaching. He was driven by curiosity and an insatiable appetite for learning which led him to master computer programming by the age of 12. 

4. Musk Has Two Bachelor’s Degrees

A group of graduates celebrating
Photo Credit:

Musk’s academic journey took him from Pretoria to the cold climes of Canada, where he attended Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. From there, he transferred to the University of Pennsylvania, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from the College of Arts and Sciences and a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from the Wharton School. 

5. Musk Started A Successful Company With His Brother

Pleased businessman in trendy suit shaking hands with redhead
Photo Credit:

In 1995, Musk embarked on his first major entrepreneurial venture, co-founding Zip2 Corporation with his brother, Kimbal. The company provided business directories and maps for newspapers online, which was a novel idea at the time. In 1999, Compaq acquired Zip2 for $341 million, making Musk’s share around $22 million.

6. Musk Co-Founded PayPal

Business woman in the office holds credit card
Photo Credit:

In the dot-com boom’s zenith in 1999, Elon Musk founded, an online payment and financial services company. This venture would evolve into PayPal, fundamentally changing how people send and receive money online. 

Eventually, PayPal merged with Thiel’s Confinity in 2000. He was ousted by the board, but after PayPal’s sale to Ebay, Musk walked away with $165 million since he was the biggest shareholder of the company. 

7. Musk Launches SpaceX With His PayPal Earnings

space x
Photo Credit: Ilfede from

With the proceeds from the PayPal sale, Musk could have settled into a comfortable retirement. Instead, he looked to the stars. In 2002, he founded Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX, with an ambitious goal: make space travel affordable and, ultimately, enable Mars colonization. 

8. Musk Did Not Start Tesla

Photo Credit: Ifeelstock from

Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning started Tesla, and Musk joined as CEO after becoming the majority shareholder. Elon Musk joined Tesla Motors in 2004, bringing with him a vision that would soon transform the automotive industry. 

9. Musk Proposed The Hyperloop Concept

hyperloop concept
Photo Credit:

Elon Musk’s propensity for tackling grand challenges was on full display in 2013 when he proposed the Hyperloop, a high-speed transportation system envisioned to travel at speeds over 700 mph. Using a network of near-vacuum tubes, the Hyperloop promises to shorten travel times between major cities to minutes, revolutionizing intercity transportation with an emphasis on efficiency, speed, and environmental sustainability.

10. Musk Is Working to Meld The Human Brain With Advanced Technology

Photo Credit:

Elon Musk co-founded Neuralink in 2016. This neurotechnology company is at the forefront of developing brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), aiming to facilitate direct communication between the human brain and computers. Neuralink’s ambitious projects include potential treatments for neurological conditions, enhancing cognitive capabilities, and, eventually, enabling symbiosis with artificial intelligence. 

11. Musk Is Working To Solve Highway Traffic

Photo Credit:

Frustrated by Los Angeles traffic, Musk founded The Boring Company in 2016 with a seemingly simple yet revolutionary goal: to reduce surface traffic through an extensive network of underground tunnels. This initiative aims to create a new transportation infrastructure that supports high-speed vehicles and hyperloop pods, offering an innovative solution to urban congestion. 

12. You Can Thank Musk For ChatGPT 

Photo Credit:

Recognizing the transformative potential and risks of artificial intelligence, Musk co-founded OpenAI in 2015 (officially launched in December 2015). This artificial intelligence research lab is dedicated to ensuring that AI develops in ways that benefit humanity as a whole. 

13. Musk Dreams of Colonizing Mars

12 2
Photo Credit: from

Elon Musk’s vision extends beyond Earth, with ambitious plans for human life on Mars. Through SpaceX, Musk aims to establish a sustainable human presence on the Red Planet, with detailed plans for building a self-sustaining city. This grand vision involves reducing space travel costs, developing life support systems, and creating a habitat where humans can thrive. 

14. Musk Created A Reusable Rocket

Apollo 11 Mission, An Astronaut holding an American Flag at the moon
Photo Credit: Sainaniritu from

Integral to Musk’s Mars colonization plan is the Starship, a fully reusable spacecraft being developed by SpaceX. Starship is designed to carry humans and cargo to Mars, the Moon, and beyond, and its full reusability could drastically reduce the cost of space exploration, making the dream of interplanetary travel and colonization a closer reality. 

15. Musk Landed The First Commercial Vehicle On the International Space Station

Photo Credit:

In a landmark achievement for commercial spaceflight, SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft became the first commercial vehicle to successfully dock with the International Space Station (ISS) in May 2012. 

16. Musk Created The Most Powerful Rocket In The World

elon musk
Photo Credit: China Images with

In February 2018, SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy, the most powerful operational rocket in the world at its debut, successfully completed its maiden flight. Falcon Heavy’s launch was not just a demonstration of raw power but also of innovative engineering, with the capability to lift nearly 64 metric tons into orbit. 

17. Musk Reduced Electric Vehicle Battery Costs 

tesla lithuim battery
Photo Credit: Grivovan from

To address the challenge of high battery costs, Tesla initiated the construction of Gigafactories, massive facilities designed to significantly reduce lithium-ion battery cell costs through economies of scale, innovative manufacturing, and waste reduction. 

18. Musk Invented an Autopilot for Cars

tesla self driving navigation
Photo Credit: Prostock from

Tesla’s introduction of Autopilot under Elon Musk’s direction has been a game-changer in the automotive industry, offering advanced driver-assistance features that push the envelope towards fully autonomous driving. This technology includes auto-steering, traffic-aware cruise control, and automatic lane changes.

19. Musk Contracted and Beat Malaria

mosquito malaria
Photo Credit:

In 2000, during a trip to South Africa, Elon Musk contracted a severe case of malaria that nearly claimed his life. As soon as he recovered from this life-threatening illness, Musk returned to his entrepreneurial ventures with renewed vigor.

20. Musk Sold Flamethrowers To Help Fund The Boring Company

money savings
Photo Credit:

In a move that captured global attention, The Boring Company sold a limited run of flamethrowers in 2018 as a promotional stunt. This unconventional marketing strategy not only generated significant media buzz but also showed Musk’s out-of-the-box way of engaging the public and fundraising for his ventures. 

21. Musk Was A Stanford University Drop Out

tired man at this computer exhausted
Photo Credit:

After leaving Stanford’s prestigious doctoral program in physics after just two days, Musk chose to chart his own path, diving headfirst into the world of online entrepreneurship. With a keen eye for opportunity and a voracious appetite for learning, Musk co-founded Zip2, an early internet city guide software company, which he later sold for millions.

22. Musk Launched A Tesla Into Space, And It’s Still There

elon musk
Photo Credit: China Images with

In a symbolic gesture that merged automotive and aerospace innovation, SpaceX launched a Tesla Roadster into space aboard the Falcon Heavy’s maiden flight in 2018. He wanted to test the Falcon Heavy’s payload, and now the car still floats about among the stars. 

From his humble beginnings in South Africa to become the wealthiest man in the world, Musk’s journey exemplifies the power of determination, ingenuity, and a steadfast belief in the ability to change the world.

36 Fun Facts About Astronauts You Might Not Know

astronaut in space
Photo Credit: Cookelma from

Traveling into space used to be a dream that could only be fulfilled by a small number of people. But today, we are seeing the first experiments in space tourism moving ahead successfully. Perhaps these fun facts about astronauts will inspire you to learn more about technology and our expansive universe.

36 Fun Facts About Astronauts You Might Not Know

33 Facts About Technology Most People Don’t Know

Man and woman using Gadgets
Photo Credit:

Not so long ago, much of what we now take for granted wasn’t possible. But it certainly is a boon to shy introverts who can happily avoid any unwanted social contact, that’s for sure! Most of us don’t fully realize how technology affects our lives. So it wouldn’t be surprising if you didn’t know some of these technology facts, either.

33 Facts About Technology Most People Don’t Know

12 Traits of Unsuccessful People Who Never Do Anything with Their Lives

lazy man on the couch sleeping
Photo Credit:

Scared of lagging behind or staying in the same position? Well, let’s talk about it! In this article, we’ll find 12 common traits of unsuccessful people who never do anything with their lives so that you won’t be one of them. 

12 Traits of Unsuccessful People Who Never Do Anything with Their Lives

17 Insane Things That Were Acceptable for Children in the 1960s

black and white photo vintage kids on a slide
Photo Credit:

Many of the behaviors that were deemed ordinary for children in the 1960s would be mortifying to people today. If parents from the ’60s were to raise their children in the same manner in today’s world, they might find social services knocking on their doors. As time progresses, so do parenting methods and the level of supervision and exposure provided to children.

17 Insane Things That Were Acceptable for Children in the 1960s


Like this post? Why not share it?

Help spread the word. You're awesome for doing it!