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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Google the "Hefner Mansion of the 21st Century"

Jon Carroll of the San Francisco Chronicle today writes about his experience visiting the Google headquarters, and he’s reminded of another building:

Some years ago, I spent a year taking meetings at the Playboy mansion, both the one in Chicago (RIP) and the one in Los Angeles. It had a lot of amenities – I was never more than 15 feet from food and extremely good red wine, and the chairs were comfortable enough for the all-nighters we routinely pulled. There were scantily clad women about, too, and occasionally I passed one in the halls. It was a lot better than a regular office.

I think maybe Google is the Hefner mansion of the 21st century. It too rises from a fantasy – what if you had all the information in the universe at your fingertips? – and it too has sensual amenities to ease the workload. Since the whole idea of Google, it would seem, is that no one should ever have to leave work, one does wonder how it handles courtship rituals and related activities. I imagine they are handled in some officially unofficial way, though, because the Google environment is very carefully thought through.

[Thanks Brinke!]


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