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EP17 Engineering Victory with Elon

Elon Musk and Bill Riley from SpaceX join Dan to discuss the underappreciated role of science and engineering in war. As you might imagine, military aircraft feature prominently in the conversation.

1. The Wages of destruction by Adam Tooze2. The Art of War by Sun Tzu 3.The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy by Adam Tooze

Written by Dan Carlin

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  1. I'm only halfway through, but this is one of the best podcasts I've ever heard. It provides a whole new way to think about war. Love it…and now a fan of Elon Musk. Interesting, being an addict to the PC game, Order of Battle, the plane types and their performance makes total sense, thanks to the experiential learning gained through the game.

  2. Two of my favorite people talking about engineering, fighter planes and tanks of the Second World War, priceless.
    I hope you two get back together sooner than later. One topic I want you to cover the next time y'all get together is the Easter Front. Specifically what fighters were in action, I legit have no clue, also dive bombers like the Stuka with it's massive cannons, and just how insanely chaotic those battles must have been, like Kursk for example. The massed infantry, tank columns, aircraft, rockets, artillery, and so forth.
    This came out just as I am listening to Ost Front for the second time. From an engineering perspective, can you two delve into just how maddening a decision it was and how vital the execution must have been to tear down all the Soviet armament, aircraft, and ammunition factories in Western Russia and move them into the Urals and Siberia? Logistically, in the middle of a war, it seems impossible to pull it off, but they did.
    And last, if you could get into Albert Speer. His book, 'Inside the Third Reich' is insightful and informative.
    Thanks again, can't wait for Round 2!

  3. The comments here are very supportive, helpful, and talk about what was actually discussed. The Twitter replies to the tweet that contained this episode have plenty of people saying they're upset that Elon was platformed, that they're going to pass on this episode, that they can't stand Elon, etc. It's a rather stark contrast, honestly.

    I think I agree with Dave Chappelle: Twitter isn't a real place. I think it rewards hostility.

    Excellent chat. I learned a lot about warfare history through this, honestly.

  4. Yada yada yada… like a virus consuming its host, the momentary success of humanity expedites its demise. The universe will become self aware with or without us.
    Something will achieve that goal
    Not us.

  5. LOL, the "physics community" is responsible for the Manhattan Project. Libertarians will jump through all kinds of hoops to deny coordination problems. Yeah, of course, physicists instigated the need for Atomic bomb development. Refugee scientists from Nazi Germany warned of the German bomb project, and Leo Szilard and Eugene Wigner wrote the Einstein–Szilard letter to explain the threat of atomic bombs and their implications. However, how are physicists supposed to coordinate and marshal resources to develop the accelerated Atomic bomb project to beat the Germans? Government not only provided funding but also logistics and coordination through the military. Elon is a brilliant guy in some specific areas, on politics he's wrong. And he has a self-interest in keeping libertarian myths going since HE is a beneficiary of enormous government subsidies.

  6. Oh Dan, why Elon? He's such a grifter. Still waiting on the tesla semi, full auto taxis, tesla solar rooftiles, a trip to mars, intercontinental rocket travel and the hyperloop transportation system. I could go on. For instance, the Vegas tunnels are a joke. He promised 150 mph with cars on sleds on air beads, like "an air hockey table." But he only managed to construct a one mile tunnel with tesla's moving cargo at 30mph. I could continue but the point is clear. Elon is a lying piece of shit.

  7. I like Dan but he is not great at interviews. Not terrible, just not great. Specifically cutting off and redirecting when the topic still has 10% left. Also and last complaint (because gratitude is actually the correct response to this pod existing) if Elon is not talking yet, it is not time to keep explaining the question. The man is thinking before he responds 😂

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