Astro Teller: The unexpected benefit of celebrating failure
Astro Teller - Entrepreneur, inventor, author
As "Captain of Moonshots" for X, Astro Teller oversees the secret projects that could reshape our lives in coming decades. Full bio
by the end of the decade.
to do it if it was possible.
for making them real.
to work at a moonshot factory.
working alongside a fashion designer
brainstorming with laser experts.
are dreaming up technologies
a wonderful place.
to remind us to keep our visions big --
to remind ourselves
a huge problem in the world
solution for solving that problem.
for such a radical solution
parts of the problem first.
to kill our project today?"
optimism to fuel our visions.
into those visions.
on the cutting room floor,
have not only survived that process,
in automated vertical farming.
suffers from undernourishment.
that needs to happen.
than conventional farming.
close to where it's consumed,
transport it large distances.
and efficient lighting.
like grains and rice to grow this way.
and environmental damage
of landlocked countries
of shipping infrastructure.
variable-buoyancy cargo ship.
footprint of shipping
of technical breakthroughs
for us to lower the cost enough
have been to make in volume
close to 200 million dollars
is just way too expensive.
with these tight feedback loops
and learning and new designs,
on the right track or not.
in one our projects,
not way down the road.
that it ends the project.
onto a more productive path.
a steering wheel or break pedal.
our goal when we started.
on the roads globally every year,
was a natural moonshot to take.
retrofitted, self-driving cars in testing,
we gave them out to other Googlers
of the experience.
do almost all the driving
in case of emergency
to hand control back to them.
with a beautiful, new perspective.
you're truly a passenger.
from point A to point B by itself.
as early on in the project as we did.
we've done since then.
more than 1.4 million miles,
California and Austin, Texas.
is more powerful than being smart.
of perspective shifting.
than the experts in that industry.
to get up higher into the sky,
more consistent winds,
hundreds of tons of steel to get there.
rises up from its perch
propellers along its wing.
have become flying turbines.
back down the tether.
a way to kill this project.
the more excited we get
a cheaper and more deployable form
we have is Project Loon.
to rural and remote areas of the world.
as many as four billion more people,
or no internet connection.
and stick it in the sky.
it would be blown away.
to tie it to the ground.
to go where the needed to go?
speeds and directions in thin strata.
and wind data from around the world,
just a tiny bit in the stratosphere
in those different directions and speeds.
ready to float into place,
hands off between cell towers
to remind us of that.
the work that seems the most difficult
to kill their project.
from a balloon in the stratosphere
that it wasn't going to.
to talk directly to handsets,
as an intermediary receiver?
bandwidth high enough
something more than just SMS?
a megabit per second,
up to 15 megabits per second.
to talk to each other through the sky
deeper into rural areas?
to stay up for more than 100 days,
balloons have cost to make?
we had to try it to get there.
most likely to kill the Loon project
the balloons through the sky,
was putting a balloon inside a balloon.
one with air and then one with helium.
to make itself heavier,
allow it to rise or fall,
is its steering mechanism.
and direction that it wants.
for it to navigate through the world?
our latest balloon,
vertical stretch of sky
of where it wants to go
the system and reducing costs.
a balloon built inexpensively
19 times over 187 days.
a complete system needs to do.
with telcos around the world,
over places like Indonesia
too good to be true,
and force them to fail fast.
with how we actually make it happen.
to work on big, risky things --
the hardest parts of the problem first,
of least resistance for them.
as soon as the evidence is on the table
from their manager, me in particular.
on teams that ended their projects,
to teams of more than 30.
at the moonshot factory.
that's in our dreams.
About the speaker:Astro Teller - Entrepreneur, inventor, author
As "Captain of Moonshots" for X, Astro Teller oversees the secret projects that could reshape our lives in coming decades.
Why you should listen
Astro Teller oversees X, Alphabet's moonshot factory for building magical, audacious ideas that can solve concrete problems for millions of people through science and technology. As X’s head, Teller has an unmatched vantage point from which to watch possible futures unfold.
In addition to his day job shepherding Peter Pans with PhDs, Teller is on the board of several businesses including AI-based hedge fund Cerebellum Capital, Inc., and Flux.io, a startup reinventing how buildings are designed and built. He is also the author of two novels and co-author (with Danielle Teller) of Sacred Cows, a nonfiction work analyzing society’s attitudes on divorce.
Astro Teller | Speaker | TED.com