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While opening a SpaceX office in Seattle, Elon Musk said that the engineers and software programmers in the Pacific Northwest outpost will be working on "a global communications system that would be larger than anything that has been talked about to date." That system would eventually be the start of a satellite communications initiative that would provide Internet for a colony on Mars.


Volkswagen may be one of the world's largest automakers, but its American arm is going through a serious rough patch. VW of America might cut back sales targets, and has an ongoing fiasco about where to build its CrossBlue crossover. Now, it's also losing Tony Cervone, its executive vice president of group communications, who is taking over as senior vice president of global communications at General Motors – effective immediately.

Former Chrysler PR chief Jason Vines has had more than his fair share of jobs over the years. He's had automotive gigs at Chrysler, Ford and Nissan, he's worked as a stand-up comedian, he spent time at Compuware and he even spent time at the food rescue program Forgotten Harvest. We've even spotted Vines (seen here at left, with comedian David Spade) regularly hanging with John McElroy on Autoline After Hours.

Thirty different auto manufacturers and technology companies are partners in a group called Car 2 Car Communication Consortium. The point is to create cars that talk to each other -- but instead of swapping secrets only with other cars of the same brand, the group wants to create vehicles that can speak to any other car, truck, or motorcycle on the road.

Jim Farley will climb aboard at Ford in mid-November, after defecting from his position as Group Vice President and General Manager of Lexus. His role at Ford will be dual-fold. Farley will be heading up the effort to entice people to buy Ford vehicles as Group Vice President of Marketing and Communications. In addition to his MarCom responsibilities, Farley will also be taking on the U.S. marketing, sales, and service for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury, a job most recently filled by the retired Cisc

Back in January at the Detroit Auto Show I spoke to Bill Betts of General Motors about their efforts to reach out to bloggers to help communicate more directly with people who are focused on particular areas. They've been inviting bloggers who are not necessarily focused on cars to meet directly with General Motors executives and managers to ask their own questions about what General Motors has been working on and where they're going.