“Whether it’s Tesla, or SpaceX taking Ethernet cables and running them inside of rocket ships, you are talking about combining the old-world science of manufacturing with low-cost, consumer-grade technology. You put these things together, and they morph into something we have never seen.”
Fadell’s company, Nest Labs, took thermostats and smoke detectors and outfitted them with software, sensors, and wireless communications. Google acquired it for $3.2 billion in cash, seeing a chance to rethink home gadgets. A handful of startups are blending software and hardware in DNA sequencers and body scanners and building coordinated armies of tiny satellites that can act as reprogrammable eyes in the sky.