February 5, 2007
Whiplash at Google
A friend of mine who works at Google invited me over to have lunch last week. It was fun to see their NY office — it had a similar fun vibe to their main campus in Mountain View. But it was a study in contrast in terms of how they treat guests.
First, I had to sign a one-sided NDA in order to enter the premises. Totally offputting as the first point of contact and a requirement to even have lunch. I know other companies do that was well but was surprised given the whole “do no evil” thing to see it at GOOG.
But then of course, there was the free super gourmet cafeteria: hazelnut-encrusted wild halibut, braised fennel and leeks, lavash, and seared scallop and seaweed with a ponzu vinaigrette. I’m not even sure what ponzu vinaigrette is, but I can attest that it is yummy.
Mostly, it was just interesting to see what the Google machine has built in Manhattan — 1,200 people (including 300+ engineers, which is truly astounding) and growing!