Building demo pods, as many teams hope to do, may cost as much as $100,000. Part of this weekend’s exercise is about soliciting cash from donors. Expected sponsors include engineering giant Aecom, law firm Cooley and TV network Nickelodeon. Musk is not expected to appear.
Page has spent 100 hours over the last four weeks with 14 others to work out kinks. They’ve tapped Internet crowdfunding, family, school grants and their own bank accounts to fund the Texas trip. They’re bargain-hunting at every turn, flying ultra-low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines to get there.