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Rumors have it Elon Musk is about to enter the Linux world

Under the hood in all Tesla cars the infamous Ubuntu is doing its duty. But this is about to change, if Rumors that came directly from one of the top engineers mouths is to verify as correct. Allegedly Tesla now has an about 50 developer strong OS team dedicated to streamlining a Linux OS designed not only for future Tesla cars, but possibly also as the central OS platform in all of Tesla’s and Elon Musks platforms. It seems even the man himself is involved in the project and giving directions as to where it should be going. Elon Musk is quoted as saying “We need a powerful and elegant OS, which is secure, and which we can adapt”. It’s not clear if the new OS project will be completely open source or also contain proprietary parts. When the informant that came out to us in a well-known Cafe near the Tesla headquarters talked about the project he sounded he sounded more than excited about the project. He is involved with the project and told us that Elon Musk personally made sure that only the best heads in the field were hired for the task, usually directly from a top company in the open source world. In many ways this new project may remind us about another Billionaire, who single-handedly formed Ubuntu into one of the most successful Linux distributions to date. Speculation is running wild as to why Elon Musk is going after this market, up until now only very few companies have been able to make decent money in the Linux distribution business. The most likely reason seems to be tigther integration and control over the whole end-user experience. The in-house knowledge might give Tesla and Elon’s other businesses an edge in fixing bugs related to the OS level and it might be helpful to have a unified platform for development. There’s another quote from Musk that goes like “We like Ubuntu, but I’m afraid we’ll have to make it obsolete simply by doing everything it does radically better, actually we want to make all other operating systems like Windows and Mac obsolete eventually. Our OS will be what the clean and efficient electric motor is to the fossil fuel burning crude technology of the past.” Apparently key features of the OS are an extreme clean and organized interface, a new and modern API for the UI and all other programmable OS parts, a browser based on webkit but with a completely new AI driven concept behind it, a new approach to the filesystem/filebrowser that is again centered around AI ideas and apparently not following the age-old idiom of files and folders and instead based on metadata and information blobs, integrated support for speech recognition and hand-writing recognition, they haven’t decided if they want an App-Store, the OS will have an init system that is based on many ideas of systemd but was apparently rewritten in a different language (according to the rumors python is the language of choice) and stripped of “nonsensical” features. The team used an open-source version of python that can be compiled to machine code and that generates code that is about as equally as fast as C or C++ compiled code. Allegedly they ported the code so it runs on x86 and they extended the support for python constructs and modules so it would be easy to port even complex python projects to the new python compiler (which by choice only supports a subset of python however) with the goal of having a language that is easy to program in, yet produces efficient code. The different projects all require more manpower, therefore Tesla is looking to hire about one hundred additional highly qualified software architects and Linux veterans. Is Tesla looking to eventually dominate the car electronics and infotainment systems and maybe planning to sell their IP to other manufacturers? It doesn’t seem unlikely given that Tesla also cooperates and shares their IP with other car companies, for example when it comes to their batteries. It seems logical for somebody who is as ambititious as Elon Musk to want to get control of yet another technology and to try to be a few steps ahead of the competition there as well. The inside informant is a brilliant guy who is extremely proud of his work on the project and quote “wouldn’t give up the job for any amount of money in the world. This is the opportunity of a lifetime. Tesla now is like Microsoft in the 1980s. Microsoft wasn’t the company to come up with a decent consumer OS. And Tesla isn’t the first company to come up with a decent all-electric car, but just like Microsoft popularized the home computer, Tesla will popularize self-driving electric cars. Although our inside informant isn’t involved with the self-driving car developments at Tesla directly, he was convinced from what he had heard inside company circles that Elon Musk has a huge surprise up his sleeves in that department. The surprise is likely to be that by the end of 2016 Tesla will be able to offer a software update that will enable a fully automated self-driving car mode. This update might only be available for cars produces in the third quarter of 2015 and later, but nevertheless the announcement which is likely to be made sometime in 2016 is probably going to be a Steve Jobs like “there’s one more thing moment”. You can just imagine the horror in the headquarters of automobile megacompanies around the world, when the iPhone moment arrives. In the same fashion we have one more quote from our insider. “I’ve been offered a lot of money from Apple, Audi, Daimler and the whole who-is-who of car companies. But they just don’t get it. If I take their offer I can quadrupel my income with the snip of a finger, but the work we’re currently doing in my team is truly sensational. We’re making advances in all departments of the company and you have seen nothing yet and for no money in the world would I not want to be a part of this.”