It’s not facebook, or twitter. This is not about social networking but I can’t stand being offline for extended periods of time. Did I say extended? That would suggest that as long it’s not up to a week, or month, I’m perfectly fine. That’s not true. My problem arises each time I have a thought or question and the internet is not immediately available to provide the facts I need to work -or is think with. Whether it’s news of what the Koreans are up to again, the implications of China’s first aircraft carrier, or the changing tide of the US’ historic war on drugs. Somewhere, somehow, something is always happening that I want to know about and it sure isn’t covered on the radio or television.
Just three days ago (on August 12th) Elon Musk -The real life inspiration behind Robert Downey Jr’s portrayal of Ironman in the movies – made a spectacular announcement.
The South-African Billionaire Inventor, Entrepreneur, and concurrent CEO (and founder), of both Tesla Motors – a company making massive, revolutionary and indisputably stylish strides in the electric car industry- and Space X which just happens to be the ONLY private company in the WHOLE world to have sent a payload to the International Space Station –anyone remember our missing national satellite? -has finally released details about Hyperloop, his much anticipated and talked about proposal that could transform transport as humanity knows it. And before I forget, yes he was one of the founders of PayPal too.
I’ve read several news articles on the subject but I’ve so far been unable to directly access the inventor’s blog to read the 52-page article elaborately outlying his concept. What I already know is that, the Hyperloop is ideal and cost-effective for cities less than a thousand miles apart, function up to 800mph – for comparison, the fastest train service is in China, and can hit 311mph- it would likely be built above ground and convey less than three dozen passengers at once, in capsules that can be ‘fired’ through tube columns every 30 seconds. It will cost at least $6 Billion, be solar-powered and there is absolutely nothing quite like it right now, not even a prototype.
What I don’t know however, is how much the Lagos State Government and the Federal Government -perhaps in conjunction with the Nigerian Railway Commission- have each committed, or budgeted for the overhaul of our decrepit railways and, the number of miles between Nigeria’s major cities. Depending on how much they’ve allocated, and the distance, I should be able to tell whether Elon Musk’s Hyperloop could be feasible in Nigeria. No, I’m not high I know we are technologically a backwater (translation :jungle) country, but we can easily afford six billion, or given as this is Nigeria, let’s say it’ll cost at least ten, billion. It’d take a quite a number of years from hopefully successful prototyping as the proposal inevitably evolves to delivery but surely we can pioneer something revolutionary. Be number one in the world for…once? Now do you see why I need the internet ASAP?
P.S : If you haven’t seen a Tesla Model S – the car that NEPA won’t let me buy *sighs*- well you NEED to.
UPDATE (24th August 2013): I see the failings in this article myself. If any of the ideas in this post isn’t clear to you, please leave a comment and I will either explain, or rewrite it from scratch. Thanks.