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Inside Google's London Complex 130

Posted by Zonk
from the morning-browsing dept.
An anonymous reader writes "ZDNet has some interesting pictures of Google's new London office which is incidentally looking to boost its 200-man headcount. Also, a Doodle 4 Google contest was held in conjunction with the office opening for schoolchildren."
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Inside Google's London Complex

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  • Hmm (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:35AM (#14079957)
    I don't see why Google needed doodles drawn for them. They have a search engine filled with thousands if you turn off the adult protection.
  • Prizes (Score:5, Funny)

    by The New Andy (873493) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:36AM (#14079966) Homepage Journal
    The winner of the Doodle 4 Google contest is Lisa Waiwaina, age 11. For her doodle, titled "Day of the Child," her prize was an upper case "G" of frosted glass, and her school won an interactive whiteboard.

    Obvious jokes:

    1) Much better than those non-interactive whiteboards which ignored your marker completely.

    2) Does the whiteboard display advertising relevant to whatever you draw on it.

    3) "her prize was an upper case "G" of frosted glass" - when you put it in those terms, yes that prize does sound like a joke.

    • 2) Does the whiteboard display advertising relevant to whatever you draw on it.

      That's nothing that the right Firefox plugin can't handle! ;)

  • 200-man headcount? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by essence (812715) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:38AM (#14079974) Homepage Journal
    only men work there? no? how hard is it to say 200 person? come on.
    • by aussie_a (778472) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:48AM (#14080007) Journal
      Wow, get over yourself. Most English speakers have a male bias in their speech. Deal. It's this sort of political correction that drives me up the wall.
    • I completely agree with your comment. As a (male) professional mathematician, I see outrageous overt sexism in the academic commmunity, but whenever anyone suggests the use of gender-neutral terms they are often lambasted (largely by the older generation) as politally correct weenies.

      The point that many science geeks completely fail to realize is that 'labels' are important. Our use of language deeply affects our relationship with the world and the manner in which we perceive our environment and fellow

      • by koekepeer (197127)
        "Now tell me is it mere 'political correctness' which prevents us from using the word Jew in this way, or is it that we have become a more enlightened species?"

        if you were truly enlightened, would it even affect you if someone called someone else a jew? why do, in issues of (presumed) discrimination/racism, people invariably assume the worst in other people? maybe because we *all* are prejudiced?

        methinks a better way to increase the peace is to stop assuming and projecting our own prejudice onto others. wor
      • "it used to be commonplace, well into the 20th century, to refer to someone who drove a hard bargain as a Jew. Now tell me is it mere 'political correctness' which prevents us from using the word Jew in this way, or is it that we have become a more enlightened species?"

        That phrase is still commonplace here, especially in the jewish community.
        It depresses me.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      how hard is it to say 200 person?

      If you say 200 person, some politically-correct-nazi will jump out at you, and chasticize you for not saying 200 perdaughter.

    • Oh please. You answered your own complaint there. Noone in their right mind would possibly think that only men work there, and anyone who speaks fluent english would understand that that is an anachronism.

      Did you know that when referring to a group of people of both genders mixed together, the french use the MASCULINE plural form of adjectives? Why not go after them? Oh yes, because it's part of the history of the language, as is the english example.

      No women I know think that this is somehow a male plot to

      • No women I know think that this is somehow a male plot to slowly eat away at their confidence, but maybe my friends are a little more secure than you.

        Oh and my Algebra and Geometry lecturer (at Cambridge, England) refers to plurals of students and mathematicians in general as female. Haven't seen any men complaining yet...

        Perhaps your friends are more secure. But unlike you, my colleagues are not in Michaelmas term of their first year, but rather are senior mathematicians at an older English univers

    • by ggy (773554)
      Hmm... It's a building full of geeks. So I'd say the chances are quite good! ;)
    • by Moses_Gunn (778857)
      Feeding a troll here, but this irks me. I haven't researched this DEEPLY, so I may be wrong, but this is my understanding of the issue. Most languages (including those that I have studied: German, Spanish, and Arabic) have gendered nouns. For instance, in German the word for "the" is der, die, or das for masculine, feminine, and neuter respectively. Somewhere along the line, English lost this feature, and nouns no longer have gender. However, originally, the word "man", in the context of referring to "
      • Somewhere along the line, English lost this feature, and nouns no longer have gender.

        You'll have language geeks tell you that English has neuter forms, they're just the same as the masculine forms. In "if someone wants a fight, he'll get it", "he'll" is not masculine, but in "if Bob wants a fight, he'll get it" it is. It just so happens masculine and neuter forms collapsed together at some point. You need context and a brain to figure out the gender.

        This either makes English highly efficient or highly o
    • There's hidden evidence [zdnet.com.au] in the pictures. Why else would there be an entire floor devoted to a toilet cleaning company unless we're talking about 200 geek men?
    • only men work there? no? how hard is it to say 200 person? come on.

      It's pretty hard. Ask my high school PE teacher. He would walk into this all male gym class and promptly yell out, "Alright LADIES, get your asses up and on to the track, DOUBLE TIME!!"

      "Men", "ladies", those two, amongst many others are interchangeable in the English language so it seems.
    • Pretty hard. "200-man" comes more naturally than "200-person".

      Plus politically correct people suck.
      • Imagine if you went to the googeplex and all the employees were gathered for a meeting, some of them being women. Now imagine if the boss said 'these are the 200 men I employ'. That would really suck. Why should writing it on a webpage be any different.?
    • Or you could be normal and say "200 people".

      (Or you could be semi-normal, hate the word "people", and write "200 persons", but that ruins my condescending comment.)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:39AM (#14079978)
    ...No matrix-entrance chair, no bridge, no engineering... What kind of a starship is this googleplex?
    • Googleplex (Score:2, Funny)

      by jurt1235 (834677)
      Isn't that the name of the new mediaplex, but than sponsored by Google? What movies do they run this weekend?
  • Since when... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mulhall (301406) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:43AM (#14079993)
    ...is a picture of an office block news?
    • Of course Google and Slashdot are big friends.

      For that reason EVERY slashdot page includes the much-discussed google-analytics scripts (see here [slashdot.org]) are included on every page on this site.

      Just check a page source code...
    • I've never understood why tech companies locate to areas of extreme congestion and high prices like central London, when their personnel would gain so many benefits from just a small shift outwards from the centre by 10-15 miles or so.

      It's an online business, for crying out loud. Why submit your people to the torture of daily commuting into a sardine can, and the costs that go with it?

      This doesn't apply just to Google of course, but Google is an excellent example of the problem.

      And no, it's not because th
      • Central Toronto isn't exactly central London, and my company isn't a tech one, but I'm so glad I work downtown. It means more choice for lunches and drinks after work. And because living downtown means I'm not forced to drive to work (which I would if I lived in the suburbs) it means I can actually go out for drinks afterwards without worrying what to do about my stupid car.
    • The news is that Google is hiring.

      Not one comment (in 116 at time of writing) has actually discussed that (except to quibble about whether or not they're hiring women).

      Slashdot's readership brings it on itself.
  • by vivekg (795441) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:48AM (#14080010) Homepage Journal
    Drawing by kids are ok, office is just like any other modern office but what I wanna see some pics of data center .. This is what I know so far, photo:the early days of Google's data center http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/?p=1709 [zdnet.com]
  • PICS - MIRROR (Score:5, Informative)

    by Eightyford (893696) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:52AM (#14080026) Homepage
    If you don't want to click through 15 pages of ads you can view the pics here: just pics though, no text [eightyford.com]
  • Datacenter pictures (Score:5, Interesting)

    by this great guy (922511) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:54AM (#14080031)
    We have often read about Google's datacenters on /. but AFAIK we have never seen any picture of their datacenters. So if somebody has something to say/show about this (even insiders :P), please reply to this post.
  • by Gopal.V (532678) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:58AM (#14080042) Homepage Journal
    Some guys from Yahoo Bangalore recently stalked google [flickr.com], apparently they came back quite unimpressed.
  • by Justen (517232) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:58AM (#14080043) Homepage Journal
    It must be a sign that Slashdot folk are aging (and maturing, and having kids, etc.) when photos of elementary school children on a field trip is now a top story.

    justen
    • No... It must be a sign that slashdot readers are mesmerized by Google when a doodle contest held on Google premises is a front-page story. Hey, we might get to see what their cubicles look like!

      Slashdots apparent obsession with Google makes People Magazines "bennifer" story look like an idle fancy. Let's move on.

  • Great doodles (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Lewisham (239493) on Monday November 21, 2005 @03:59AM (#14080044)
    I love these doodles! Google should have a user-submitted doodle every day; spice it up a bit.

    Maybe there's a Greasemonkey script here...
  • by Anonymous Coward
  • And from New York... (Score:4, Informative)

    by pomo monster (873962) on Monday November 21, 2005 @04:12AM (#14080091)
    Curbed.com [curbed.com] has a photo tour of Google's new office in Chelsea [curbed.com] (15th at 8th), for which they just signed the lease a few days ago [nypost.com]. At 311,000 square feet, it's over three times the size of their previous midtown space.

    The floor's not much to look at now, but I'm looking forward to seeing it fully decked out when they throw a party someday (keeping my fingers crossed!) I'll invite y'all.
  • by anzev (894391) on Monday November 21, 2005 @04:26AM (#14080123)
    It's interesting to me how all the children drew the TM mark in the upper right corner of the image. I wonder... :-) Starting young I see... Maybe it's so we can say "In soviet Russia, the TM draws you in the upper right corner" :-), or "imagine a beowulf cluster of thesee"
    • In Soviet Russia the TM sign was not used. We began to use it when USSR was broken. May be because of this the Soviet Union was broken?..
    • If you look with your eyes, you may see that in 2 of 5 pictures, the TM is clearly done after the kids are done with the drawings.

      Plus they probably had the original Google-logo with the TM to base their doodles on.
      • If you look with your eyes, you may see that in 2 of 5 pictures, the TM is clearly done after the kids are done with the drawings.
        I'm glad you pointed that out. I'd been looking with my feet, and hadn't seen that.
      • If you look with your eyes, you may see that in 2 of 5 pictures, the TM is clearly done after the kids are done with the drawings.

        Plus they probably had the original Google-logo with the TM to base their doodles on.

        Sure looks to me like these were just xerographed logos, that they colored with crayons and markers. Meaning the TM wasn't added after, it was there all along, just ignored by some children. So perhaps counter-jokes about kids starting young ignoring trademarks and copyrights are more appropria

  • Aghh (Score:2, Interesting)

    by t_allardyce (48447)
    Why do all modern buildings have to look so cheap? That's nearly as bad as a 60's concrete monstrosity.

    • by MSBob (307239)
      Exactly. Especially in a city like London. Compare the 100 years old buildings and the one from the seventies.

      Two thousand years from now, archeologists will wonder what happened to the world in the twentieth century. With all the cheap looking crap produced in that century they will no doubt assume it was a time of great poverty in the history of Western Europe.

      Considering that all those beautiful buildings of the past were built by a society that was much less affluent it is really shameful that we f

  • I will wait for Google office in Ukraine. Why they forgot about our country? :)
  • I don't know how was made the test, but it seems to me very symbolic that the 10-11 y.o. children recognize the google graphic policy.
    Well, most of them should have internet at home, BUT I'm not sure they can draw logo of other big firm as easilly as they did with the google one.
    Concerning the google desks, I suppose these desks are for the commercials entity, as the technic ones don't really need desk all over the world. At least, I don't see the interest to rent a building if the same can be done from ho
  • Now the next remains is pics of google moonplex and moodles :D.
  • by NitsujTPU (19263)
    the office opening for schoolchildren

    Why did the office open for schoolchildren?
  • Sooo lots of pictures of google doodle, a few lounges and a plaque showing that they share their offices with Rentokill.

    I suppose if you appreciate artwork of 10 year olds it's an interesting scoop.
  • ...yet again, just another corporate exercise in the "brand brainwashing" of our kids ala Macdonalds, Disney, etc.
  • by Oscaro (153645) on Monday November 21, 2005 @07:29AM (#14080597) Homepage
    I know I'm going almost off-topic, but I think all slashdot readers should know that the much-discussed google-analytics scripts (see here [slashdot.org]) are included on every page on this site.

    Check the page source and see for yourself.
  • London ?

    With all their money and the choices available in the UK, couldn't they find somewhere pleasant instead ?
    Try Bristol, Bath, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford and make an office people will actually want to work in ..

    • Yeah, that's just what Cambridge needs, another bunch of socially incapable "intelligent" people. Sometimes it amazes me that these people manage to get past their teenage years without killing themselves in some pointlessly stupid way. They may be shit hot in their chosen field, but they have the common sense of cheese sandwiches.
    • 7 million people disagree with you (including me). London's great :-)
      • Yup, I agree, London is great!
      • Is that why those seven million people are so irritable and miserable-looking all the time? It's one of the most hostile environments I've ever encountered, full of self-important pricks who think they're Really Busy and In A Hurry and woe betide you if you get in their way. The mayor's transport policy seems to be to make it so annoying to drive your car that you'll give it up and use the inadequate, unreliable, overpriced public transport system lest you go on a killing spree. There can't be anywhere i
        • London's great, the public transport's fine, I'm smiling on the inside, don't get in my way and I won't be hostile.
        • To do that, you'd have to start by taking away the state money that goes to London. Move out the opera house, the ballet, the football stadia, some more branches of government and most of the BBC. And cancel the Olympics.

          All that state money comes from the rest of the country and subsidises the London economy (both directly and indirectly), which drives more people towards it and raises the house prices that cause so many problems. It causes a mass of jobs to be created there and impairs opportunities acr

      • You've never lived in Edinburgh.
    • I hope Google opens a Canadian office at some point. Not everyone here wants to move to the US to work for them.
    • Many bits of London are very pleasent. If you have not made an effort to enjoy London is your own failure, old Londinium is not to blame.

      If you want to live in a place with a few sleepy cows and funny sheep you are welcome, those places do not compare with the cultural and social posibilities of London.

      The killer is that Paris is just 2.5 hours away.

      No brainer frankly.
  • Google NYC (Score:2, Informative)

    by RTSKABJ (899291)
    Pictures of the new NYC Googleplex have been posted online as well, here [curbed.com].
  • by Cwaig (152883)
    Looks elitist to me - those photo's don't show regular London primary school kids. They look distinctly like the privately educated kid's of rich families, from an all girls public school nearby in Chelsea. Probably the school attended by the Google UK management's kids...

    Note: for those of you lucky enough not to be familiar with London, that's some of the most expensive real estate in the world. And in the UK, public school == fee paying school. Ie. Only the rich and privileged get to go there.
    • The competition was open to 25 schools in the area around the new offices. Now, to the best of my knowledge, there aren't 25 independent schools around Victoria; so I think it's safe to assume that at least some of the children came from the state sector.

      Not that would have been anything wrong with excluding the state sector. If I'd just opened some nice new offices the last thing I'd want is a bunch of trainee mobile phone thieves and dodgy cigarette salesmen running around them.

  • ...the old Enron building?
  • by clsc (730336) on Monday November 21, 2005 @10:57AM (#14081529) Homepage Journal
    Am I the only one that get reminded of the Sausage Machine in the The Wall movie when looking at picture 2?

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