I am using Microsoft office Speech Recognition software to write this article. I believe it’s important to challenge myself to use new technologies. I hope it is a time saver. I report at the of the article. Working at a university if a forcing function for trying new things. Fear of failure is mitigated because students are here and very helpful.
I hoped we would have made it to the final round for the Tesla plant. Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, was on 60 minutes on Sunday March 30th. He discussed the large battery plant he was going to build. He said the factory will be solar powered. It will build electric batteries for the Tesla car. He wants to build an electric car in a solar powered factory. Eventually, his vision is to have the automobile industry become less dependent on the oil industry. When I saw the scope of the factory, I realized we probably don’t have the skilled work force in New Mexico to build this factory.
It is not clear we have sufficient regional development capability to meet the skilled workforce numbers necessary to win this project – yet. We can start to demonstrate we have capability to make a case to win a large project like this while also growing things like tax incentives. The technology industries are looking at the west. Demonstrated large regional collaborations are the future of the technology industry. It is cheaper to work here, we have more land for a large solar powered plant, for example, and of course sunlight. Clean energy is a desirable future for our state. Dependence on large government investment in our state is becoming a thing of the past.
Elon Musk is also the founder of Space X. We recruited this company to New Mexico because we were able to pass the informed consent legislation for Spaceport America. Positive regulatory environment is also important for business. Mr. Musk likes to spend time at his manufacturing plants every week. It would’ve been beneficial for him to have the manufacturing plant for Tesla here in New Mexico along with his reusable booster program. If we wish to retain our vital young people in this market, we must acknowledge, they are interested in technology as career choices. While the service economy is a good place holder for our state, good jobs are in technology development.
Silicon Valley did not emerge as a technology center overnight. Bill Shockley, one of the inventors of the transistor, moved back to his home town, Palo Alto, in the 1950s. Vowing to make it the technology promise land, he brought with him a number of highly skilled engineers from the Bell labs, including Gordon Moore and Robert Noyce. They started Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory in 1956. Stanford University was close by and also very engaged in early scientific development of technologies that became important in the space industry.
In 1957, dissatisfied by poor management at Shockley’s company, Moore and Noyce left. They eventually started Fairchild Semiconductor which became an incubator for Silicon Valley. Noyce and Moore spun off again and founded Intel which required leading edge manufacturing capability. Chip manufacturing was necessary to fuel the computer industry whose benefits have created the technology economy we live in today. Good jobs were created by Intel, Albuquerque is an example beneficiary in our state.
We have the second space age emerging in our community. The aerospace engineering program at NMSU is in its infancy and growing quickly. It will not grow over night, yet the more proactive we are in recruiting other technology industries to our state, the easier it will be over the long term to demonstrate our ability to attract large start-up industries to our state. Our leaders must have vision beyond the next election.
NASA is seeking collaborative partnerships with commercial space companies. The point of the partnership is to advance of entrepreneurial efforts in the industry. NASA will enable these partnerships by allowing the partners to participate in mutually beneficial activities with NASA. We have been creating collaborations with public schools, universities, private industry and government in commercial space business, education and research for quite some time. Having formal recognition of these large partners in our work is worth pursuing and an ever important success strategy.
Report on speech recognition, I used the technology about 30% of the time on task to write this article. I will keep at it, humbling but worth it. I hope the folks in economic development keep at it too.