Friday, December 03, 2010

Adventures in Silicon Valley: Part 0x01

 From time to time my job requires me to do some travelling.  I am currently on such a work trip with my entire operations team. I have headed to Mountain View California to spend a week or so at Google headquarters.

  Monday night I packed my suitcase with the essentials - clothes, toothbrush, iPod and Zeke.  Zeke was all for the trip until he realized that he was flying coach, at which time he decided to stay home.  On Tuesday I flew out to SFO, and the past two days I have been rocking the awesomeness that is Google HQ.

I have spent the past two days absorbing the incredibly creative energy that seems to resonate through the Google campus.  Magic happens in these walls, and it is an energizing experience to hang out, and around, the people that pulls the strings behind the scenes and makes the magic happen.  I've also been absorbing the fantastic food in the Google Cafe's.  Its goodness can be summed up in two words: Pasta Bar.

Sunrise over Moffat Field.  The building is huge, and
designed to house zeppelins.
One of the local engineers recommended that I check out the park across the street from the office as it affords views of the city and the bay.  This morning I woke up early (jet lag is troublesome), so I decided to check out the park and do some geocaching.  It was 6:30 in the morning and still dark outside, but I grabbed a taxi and headed over to the park.  I climbed the big hill in the park called Vista Slope, arriving just in time to catch the most spectacular sunrise.  I paused to enjoy the amazing view as the sun slowly appeared over Moffat Field.

After the sun rise I hiked some of the trails, and did some geocaching in the surrounding park, and ended up at the office just in time for breakfast (omelet bars are awesome too).  I then walked around HQ and took some pictures.  I have been here several times before, but I wanted to show off the place for my wife, and for you good folks in blogger land.

Google HQ contains some really interesting items: A sculpture garden, a skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus Rex, a replica of the first commercial space craft to break the atmosphere: Space Ship One.   They also have scluptures to celebrate each of the major Android versions, which are named after desserts: Cupcake, Donut, Eclair, Froyo, and Gingerbread.

I spent the rest of the day working and toiling.  After work we played laser tag, and then went out to Palo Alto to check out a co workers plane that he is building in his garage.

Tomorrow is the Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) Christmas Party at the Computer History Museum, which promises to be a rockin good time, so I am going to sign off and get some rest so I can rock out old school.   I'll blog some more as my trip unfolds.