Why Nikola Tesla is Alive and Well

How a Ridiculed Genius Built His Legacy

You’ve seen the cars – you know, those self-driving ones that evoke so much buzz. “Tesla” is quickly becoming a household name, but before the car bearing that moniker, there was the man.

- Tesla's demonstrations were electrifying -

– Tesla’s demonstrations were electrifying. –

Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) was a mad scientist, lone genius and one of the most consequential inventors of all time…


Able to perform integral calculus in his mind, Tesla’s imagination was vivid and precise. Yet his legacy is founded on experiments, showmanship and practical inventions.

In Tesla’s laboratory his imagination became real. Tesla garnered the world’s attention, not by words and calculations, but by passing visible electric current through his body, creating localized earthquakes and building a giant electric transmission tower resembling a UFO.

As the saying goes, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Your ideas are worth sharing, so don’t stop with the work of thinking. If you want to be remembered, have some fun experimenting and exceeding expectations.


Anything but mainstream, Tesla critiqued both Edison and Einstein. The inventor of the world’s foremost electrical system, alternating current, Tesla believed in archaic ether rather than electrons, and he criticized the much-acclaimed Theory of Relativity.

Ridiculing Edison’s lack of hygiene and hobbies, Tesla had no good words for him at his death: “He had a veritable contempt for book learning and mathematical knowledge, trusting himself entirely to his inventor’s instinct and practical American sense.”

Legacy isn’t made of status quo. Often we fear contradicting the experts or, even worse, being wrong. If you dare to be original you will make mistakes, but when you are right people will notice.


Far ahead of his time, many of Tesla’s ideas are just now being realized in the 21st Century. He predicted thinking machines and robots in the workforce, communication with mobile phones, and livestreaming video.

Today we take his revolutionary predictions for granted: “We shall be able to witness the inauguration of a president, the playing of a World’s Series baseball game, the havoc of an earthquake, or a battle just as though we were present.” However, Tesla is great not because he predicted the future, but because he helped to make it possible.

- Nik Tesla was an inventor with personality. -

– Nikola Tesla, showman and thinker, was an inventor with personality. –

Nikola Tesla powered the world with electricity, but he electrified its citizens with his vision. Invent, but don’t stop there. Create a demand for your product by casting a vision for its many applications.


Enough about Tesla – he’s long gone anyway. What about those marvels of science, the self-driving electric cars? Some people love them while others hate them, but they are the future. Now that sounds like a familiar theme – I guess Nikola Tesla is alive and well.

Question: Do you agree with Tesla’s view of machines? Will we master them or will they master us? You can leave a comment by clicking here.




Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Amy

    In my opinion, we already have mastered machines…they wouldn’t be around if it weren’t for us. The creation cannot overcome the creator…even Ultron was eventually no match for the Avengers. 😉

    • I like that opinion. Perhaps it’s most important that machines have good creators.

  • Sylvia

    Tesla’s antagonism with Edison, even as they worked alongside each other, makes you wonder: as amazing as Edison’s mind was, how much sharper did he become by working alongside Tesla and being challenged every day with his opposing ideas. Iron sharpens iron. What would either one of them not have accomplished if they didn’t have the spirit of competition driving them forward, forcing honesty with mistakes, then improvement and growth?

    • Excellent ideas! I’d love to have you contribute an article (and brick model) to the site sometime!

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