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Dr. Marc Seifer  - Nikola Tesla

Dr. Marc Seifer, is a writer, university lecturer and handwriting expert.


Featured in The Washington Post, Scientific American, Publisher's Weekly, Rhode Island Monthly, Investor’s Daily, MIT's Technology Review and The New York Times.


Dr. Seifer is internationally recognized as an expert on the inventor Nikola Tesla (the subject of his doctoral dissertation) and the acclaimed biography:


Wizard: The Life & Times of Nikola Tesla.


Translated into eight languages including Russian and Chinese, Wizard has been called “serious scholarship” by Scientific American


Wall Street Journal: “One of the five best books written on the brilliantly disturbed”…

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Episode #1

Q: Dr. Marc Seifer – Nikola Tesla – Intro


  • 1976 writing an article on Tibetan Lama

  • Came across name of Tesla

  • Claim that he was from another planet, Venus

  • Read a biography & saw there were gaps

  • Found his 1,000 page book of patents & lectures

  • Began to research & wrote doctorate on Tesla

Episode #2

Q: What were the influences that shaped Tesla?


  • Born 1856, Lika, Serbia/Croatia

  • Father was a priest

  • Elite and educated family

  • Attended Graz University in Austria

  • Studied at University of Prague

  • Focused on solving difficulty of direct current issue

Episode #3

Q: What was Tesla’s personality?


  • Great sense of humor, witty

  • Friends with Mark Twain, Rudyard Kipling, Sanford White

  • Star among stars in New York City

  • Complicated person, celibate, never married

  • Man about town

Episode #4

Q: How brilliant was Tesla?


  • Some inventors like Edison “built better mousetraps”

  • Tesla was different

  • He was innovative in many different realms

  • Electricity, Pumps, Airplanes, Helicopters

  • Truly a genius

  • Worked on the Dynamic Theory of Gravity

Episode #5

Q: What was the “War of the Currents”?


  • How to harness the power of the Niagara Falls

  • Center of Northeast USA power distribution

  • Westinghouse used Tesla model at 1893 Chicago World’s Fair

  • Edison entrenched in his model

  • Tesla’s solution is basis for world’s electric grids

Episode #6

Q: Did Tesla ever win the Nobel prize?


  • 1909 Marconi won Nobel prize based on Tesla’s work

  • Possible that Tesla wrote an angry letter to the Nobel committee

  • 1915 NY Times front cover announced Tesla & Edison won

  • The report was untrue but never retracted

  • Person who nominated Einstein in 1935 also nominated Tesla

  • But Tesla never won a Nobel

Episode #7

Q: What were Tesla’s major achievements?


  • The induction motor, hydroelectric power system

  • Renewable, non pollutable energy

  • Tesla most important person to help stem tide of global warming

  • Inventor of wireless communication

  • Forefather of the computer chip

Episode #8

Q: Was Tesla political?


  • Did not express himself too much

  • Worked for Germans at start of WWI

  • Called out Germans after USA entered the war

  • Against the New Deal, probably a Republican

  • Considered to be an elitist

Episode #9

Q: Was Tesla anti-Semitic?


  • Three instances that could be considered anti-Semitic

  • “Let’s not invite …Jews…

  • Anti-Semitic vibe of that era

  • But surrounded by Jewish people who were admirers

  • Right hand man was Fritz Lowenstein

Episode #10

Q: 2021: What is Tesla’s legacy?


  • Tesla provides us with incredible inspiration

  • Celebration of intelligence

  • Changed the world for the better

  • Fascinating life: gilded age, famous friends

  • Renewable, hydroelectric energy

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Full Interview - Dr. Marc Seifer

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