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Honestly as a Googler I neither saw nor needed the vision of Larry, Sergey, Eric, Sundar, or anyone else except maybe Urs, Jeff, and Sanjay. I mean I worked on the C++ toolchain. Making a bitchin' compiler is its own reward. I guess things are different on product teams?

Your work is crucial for the foundation of whatever Google builds. Unfortunately just like in construction, having a good foundation doesn’t mean that what gets build on top is the right thing.

Well I think of it more like carpentry. I can build a beautiful house and not get upset later that the owner sits on the couch watching game shows on tv all day. Similarly it doesn’t have to bother me that the result of all my optimizations at Google was they had more capacity to let a computer play Starcraft against itself for fifty million CPU-years. Just does not concern me at all as long as my paycheck didn’t bounce.

Are you saying you have no ethic at all ?

Are you comparing yourself to an independent carpenter ?

An independent carpenter would be like a mercenary, who first works to earn money, and then eventually selects his/her clients according to his/her own vision.

A carpenter working for a big corporation would wonder what is the vision of the company, what is he contributing to, beyond the delivering of the building, imo

No, but I am saying that I don’t need any executive “vision” to motivate my work, especially when the executive vision is obviously insipid, like it was with Vic Gundotra and G+. It is motivating enough for me if search gets 10% faster every year. If you hook your motivations to corporate figureheads then you’ll eventually find yourself without any reason to go to work.

If you are a Google employee and you don't care about the executive visions, you are a living proof that Google is made of people who don't even understand what they are working for, beside having a good salary imo.

When you work for a corporation, you are supposed to embrace (and consent to) the company's goal, which is defined by the top level.

Having a search "10% faster every year" looks like a narrow-minded KPI without awarness of a greater purpose.

If you are happy, fine, but I think some people would trade your happiness for their freedom and privacy

There is absolutely no requirement for adoption of any ideology in an at-will employment environment.

You obviously have some kind of very very dull axe to grind. I happen to think that universal search of all knowledge is a thing of significant benefit to humanity.

I feel it's my duty to insert this here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQdDRrcAOjA

I work for cloud products. I cannot say much about others, but at least urs is the best technical infrastructure leader but not a good choice for cloud leader. Many people on customer engineering side also share the same feeling with me.

Business is complicated. You cannot be narcissus forever.

I'm considering applying there. Any hint/help? username @ gmail. Thanks.

Read cracking the coding interview and do a few problems from each section. Make sure to cover dynamic programming. I spent about a month and I was very well prepared.

You'll need to do significantly more than just that.

Really, downvoted? What the crap is going on?

Urs and Jeff were amazing. Something has changed though. Granted it’s been 15 years since I worked there, but some of the incredible spark that used to be there seems to have gone out.

Urs is good engineering manager, but bad business manager. So while he was managing TechInfra, it was ok, once he started to manage Cloud, it wasn't. Interestingly, he is smart enough to realize it, this is why he hired Diane, who managed business side at least more competently. But it looks like Diane didn't demonstrate enough liberal virtue with her support for DoD contracts and got kicked out. Now they hired Oracle dude to replace her, most likely not a great culture fit.

Honest question: does the current Google have the environment to innovate on the next generation of compilers/PL/program synthesizers?

I would have definitely said yes back in the day; but not so sure now.

(Admittedly might be biased. I'm the founder of Synthetic Minds. We're building program synthesizers; basically all compilers work: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19059922)

No I don’t think Google is on the forefront of that type of thing. It’s more of a practical craft. There may be people doing interesting PL research at Google but they aren’t in the language platform team. That said these are probably some of the tightest, safest, and best-tested large-scale C++ programs ever.

Agree with the scale. But do you mean the compilers toolchain is the largest/safest; or the overall C++ codebase. No questions about the latter, but would be surprised if you meant the former.

Out of curiosity: if not the language platform team, then which team does PL research? My email is in my profile of you'd rather ping there.

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