X Prize

How many people have enough money to enter a competition to build a spaceship? More than you'd think.
The X PRIZE, according to its website, is a $10,000,000 prize to jumpstart the space tourism industry through competition between the most talented entrepreneurs and rocket experts in the world. The $10 Million cash prize will be awarded to the first team that:

  • Privately finances, builds & launches a spaceship, able to carry three people to 100 kilometers (62.5 miles)

  • Returns safely to Earth

  • Repeats the launch with the same ship within 2 weeks

Among the project's supporters are Tom Hanks, Tom Clancy, and John Glenn.
I was chatting about this with a colleague at work. The answer to the Jeopardy question of what all those people who got rich during the Internet boom are working on is, "What is the X Prize, Alex."