Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors, electrified the transportation world last week. His emailed announcement marked a clear intent to freely share the 203 patents in his company’s meteoric rise in the electric automobile industry. His motivation is simple: Spur collaboration, not competition.
Patent wars stifle progress.
By sharing his investments with others, his stated objective is a mutually beneficial relationship, not the contentious and competitive environment ruled by legal professionals. Open sources invite durable relationships that develop wider acceptance and increased availability.
The threads of a blanket of charging stations across America could use some companions too. Tesla is cultivating gardeners as it cultivates gardens – making friends all along the way. But is it good for business?
Since the announcement four days ago, the actual value of Elon Musk’s tiny 23% stake in his company has increased in value ~half a billion dollars according to analysts. Just a sign of things to come.
From ecological disaster to sustainable environment, carbon crisis in perspective
With 100 million new cars a year and less than 1% electrics, the true competitors of electric cars are the 2 billion fuel-guzzling cars now cruising the planet on fossils. Blend in a few oil wars, rising seas and carbon levels unseen in many moons; we have a planet-sized market ripe for a make-over in attitude.
As Tesla moves into international markets, the availability of charging stations limits sales. Especially in the wide open country of China, acceptance of transportation by electric vehicle depends on viability of charging-station networks.
With collaboration, Tesla has seized the high ground in environmental stewardship, economic opportunity and socially responsible policy. Last week, Tesla met with BMW to discover shared interests in world-wide acceptance of electric vehicles.
From contentious attorneys in patent suits to creative inventors dancing on open-source platforms
When MIT joined Harvard in sharing their curricular content online for free, they keystoned the movement toward Open Educational Resources (OERs). This move by Tesla adds a fresh perspective on the urgency to address our wasteful habits.
Moving away from the patent paradigm with its wars and lawyers, delays and hold-ups, infringements and headaches, Tesla has chosen the path of open-sources. By developing human potential and instilling a sense of personal investment, open sourcing puts a priority on people and planets ahead of profits. Tesla is leading by example – sharing what they have done so that others can stand on the shoulders and see through the eyes and heads of giants.