With Twitter’s workforce now less than a third of what it was when Elon Musk took over, those who remain are under tremendous pressure to keep developing and keeping many functions running.
While most have taken old roles for Musk’s robust vision for the platform, some unlikely sources have jumped in to help steer it where they want it to go.
One such person is George Hotz – a software engineer and hacker best known for being the first person to unlock an iPhone in 2007 at the age of 17 and later break jailbreak restrictions on the PlayStation 3. sony (snap) Hotz was sued when he published information about doing it online, even though the two parties settled out of court in 2011. (One of the conditions was that he would never do anything like that again with a Sony product.)
Hotz, now in his 30s, recently volunteered to spend 12 weeks improving Twitter’s search function and fixing some popups that users get when they scroll through the site without logging in.
Hotz is betting on himself on Twitter
After receiving criticism for defending Musk’s ultimatum, Hotz posted on Twitter on Nov. 16, “I’ll put my money where the employees are by either” committing longer work hours to higher intensity or severance pay. Let’s see: “I am looking for a 12 week internship with Twitter for living costs in SF. It’s not about accumulating capital in a dead world, it’s about making the world alive.”
At the time, Musk replied to the tweet with “let’s talk”.
While both Musk and Hotz are known for making big promises that ultimately fall through, it looks like Hotz has started working on something for Twitter — on Nov. 21, Hotz wrote that he’s working on it. What one user describes as “Twitter”. [sic] unusable broken search.”
Hotz wrote, “That’s what Elon told me was my job, and I’d do my best to do it.” “I have 12 weeks. Even if you try to get rid of that unremovable login popup after a bit of scrolling down, um, these things are ruining the internet.
Hotz and Musk are insane
Hotz’s defense of Musk’s employee ultimatum came as a surprise to some, as he and Musk have a history of clashing heads.
In 2015, Hotz revealed that Musk was trying to rope him into a job at Tesla (TSLA) — Get the Free Report But the discussions fell apart after Musk “kept changing the terms.” He told a Bloomberg reporter that Musk had offered him a multi-million dollar bonus if he could build a better Autopilot program than Tesla at the time.
Tesla called Bloomberg’s story “absolutely wrong” and Hotz went all out to found Comma.ai and build his own self-driving technology for Tesla. He stepped down as CEO in late October 2022 and has largely avoided any high-profile feud with Musk.
It seems that for Hotz, the new “internship” at Twitter is a way to challenge and gain notoriety – he made it clear that he has no plans to throw himself off Twitter indefinitely. Hey.
Hotz wrote under his original proposal, “I’m not the person if you want long-term stability, but I really enjoy diving into complex codebases and I think I can build 1000 of those microservices in 12 weeks.” Can help document and clean up. “reverse engineering!”