As Google continues to expand its workforce, preserving its engineers' talent and fostering creativity has been key to the company’s continued success. The 20% project is designed to maintain that piece of Google’s philosophy and culture. Furthermore, the 20% project allows Google to maintain the start up feel in a 20,000+ sized company and attracts a diverse pool of skilled engineers. During this talk, you will hear from a panel of engineers that have worked on various 20% projects. You will have the opportunity to listen to their successes, how they got involved in their respective projects, and how ideas have come to fruition.
20% Project: Google Art Project ( http://googleartproject.com/)
Marc Donner was born in a log cabin on the lower East Side of Manhattan in the second half of the twentieth century. After high school he emigrated to Los Angeles where he studied electrical engineering at Caltech before taking a job at NASA working on planetary radar. He then joined IBM's research lab where he worked on a nine-million-pixel display. After a while he wandered off to CMU where he earned a PhD in computer science by programming Ivan Sutherland's six-legged walking robot. A talk on juggling by Claude Shannon inspired him to propose a juggling robot, which IBM Research graciously funded. While that work was going on he sponsored work on what ultimately became the IBM TrackPoint. He then got involved in large-scale distributed computing, which led to a trip to Morgan Stanley, where he built their intranet, re-engineered their back office, and eliminated all of their data center printing, amounting to about two million pages of paper and two million frames of microfiche each day. This then led to some entertaining projects in the marketing department and then in the research department where he led the development of a number of interesting financial modeling engines.
Today he's an engineering director at Google looking after the interests of the infrastructure networking software engineers as well as helping with cybersecurity and advising Google's work with major museums on the GoogleArtProject.com, all while writing articles about science fiction for an engineering magazine.
Google Art Project Summary:
On February 1st Google unveiled the Art Project, a unique collaboration with some of the world’s most acclaimed art museums to enable people to discover and view more than a thousand artworks online in extraordinary detail.
Over the course of 18 months Google worked with 17 art museums including, Altes Nationalgalerie, The Freer Gallery of Art Smithsonian, National Gallery (London), The Frick Collection, Gemäldegalerie, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, MoMA, Museo Reina Sofia, Museo Thyseen - Bornemisza, Museum Kampa, Palace of Versailles, Rijksmuseum, The State Hermitage Museum, State Tretyakov Gallery, Tate, Uffizi and Van Gogh Museum. The results of this partnership, which can be explored at www.googleartproject.com involved taking a selection of super high resolution images of famous artworks, as well as collating more than a thousand other images into one place. It also included building 360 degree tours of individual galleries using Street View ‘indoor’ technology.
Each of the museums has worked in extensive collaboration with Google, providing expertise and guidance on every step of the project, from choosing which collections to feature; to advising on the best angle to capture photos; to what kind of information should accompany the artwork.
Works of art included in the project range from Botticelli’s ‘Birth of Venus’ to Chris Ofili’s ‘No Woman, No Cry’, Cezanne’s post impressionist works to Byzantine iconography. From the ceilings of Versailles to ancient Egyptian temples, a collection of Whistlers to Rembrandts all over the globe. In total, 486 artists from around the world have been included.
20% Project: Google Spreadsheets
Zach Lloyd is a Staff Software Engineer at Google and the lead engineer on Google Spreadsheets. Prior to joining Google, Zach worked as lead engineer at Carrentals.com and as a sound recording engineer at a recording studio in New York. Earlier in his career he worked as an engineer at Amazon.com and the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena. Zach has a BS from Stanford and an MS from the London School of Economics. He also spent a year at Yale Law School before deciding that he’d rather work in tech.
Google Spreadsheet Summary:
Zach prototyped the a new client architecture for Google Spreadsheets in his 20% time and helped come up with the rendering techniques that formed the basis of the overhaul of Google Docs and Spreadsheets that launched in Spring 2010.
20% Project: Various Projects
Andrew Hogue is a Senior Staff Engineer and Engineering Manager in the Search Quality group at Google New York. He has worked on a wide array of projects including question answering , Google Squared , sentiment analysis, local and product search, and Google Goggles . His is interested in the areas of structured data, information extraction, and machine learning, and their applications to search and search interfaces. Prior to Google, he earned a M.Eng. and B.S. in Computer Science from MIT.
The agenda for this event is:
5:30 - 6:30 pm: Attendees Register / Networking
6:30 - 6:35 pm: Welcome & Intro
6:35 - 7:35 pm: Presentations
7:35 - 8:00 pm: Q/A
The RSVP name will be provided to the building security in advance - so please do register with your real name (this will significantly speed up registration).
To allow all participants (in the community) to get a clear visibility into their schedules; for all upcoming talks we will make seating reservable two weeks prior to the event. We are hoping that this minor change will help address the last-minute cancelattions and empty seating we experienced with last month's talk.
Do you have a question for the speaker? Submit it here. See a question you like? Vote it up! Please note that you can also post questions during the talk - questions posted online in Moderator will be answered by the speaker first. Public access wifi is available in the room, so bring your Web enabled devices.
Google volunteers will also be present at the event to answer any questions you may have, look for people who are wearing "Google Wear".
The RSVP for the meetup will open 2 weeks before the event on July 13 at 5:30pm.