August 1, 2005
So it's true... even I have not been immune to the major center of gravity for software professionals in the Bay Area. So I followed the footsteps of Adam Bosworth, Josh Bloch, Cedric Beust, Crazybob and other notable influencers in the Java and enterprise software world and joined Google. Luckily I am not important enough for anyone to sue Google over my move. It also looks like I am going to keep my blog as long as I don't post tomorrow's stock price. And at my option strike price it does not look like I will retire too soon (I am hoping for it to hit $500!), so expect more work on EAI Patterns for a while to come.
So is there integration work at Google? Keep in mind that Google runs one of the largest (civilian) distributed computing infrastructures in the world. Do they care about reliability and fail over? You betcha! Do they write lots of software? Well, yeah!
Now Google is a bit on the secretive side about its projects, technologies, how many servers there are (I swear I don't know!). And it is understandable when you realize how much IP is floating around there and how many billions of Dollars hinge on that. Somehow we need to protect our $80B market cap...
BTW, it is true that Google provides free gourmet lunch, breakfast and dinner (attendance is not required). Working for a company that pulled $1.4B last quarter with 4000 or so employees sure has its benefits.
Joining Google does not mean I will retire from conferences and public events. I will present a tutorial at OOPSLAand will likely be speaking at Microsoft PDC and OOP in Germany so my German does not get rusty.
Why did I leave ThoughtWorks? Mostly to reduce the travel burden on my aging body. Somehow living in one of the nicest (and most expensive) cities in the US and hardly ever being there makes little sense (apparently, this took me only 10 years or so to figure out). As far as consulting companies go, ThoughtWorks is still on the top of my list. In consulting you get to work on an unparalleled variety of projects, which proves to be an invaluable source of ideas and design patterns. Over time, though, the temptation of less travel and more stock options grew stronger :-)
Oh, and by the way, I did not take the last spot at Google, they are looking for many more smart people