“Please do NOT share any of what is said to you today, as we don’t want others to know what goes on at Google”. [Google Tour Contact]
Imagine walking into a huge state-of-the-art building, being taken into a small room and given this instruction. Excited? We were- for this just happened to be our experience on the morning of Friday 20th June at Google’s European headquarters, Dublin.
As a result of winning the ‘Google Creative Technology Prize’ at the National Science & Engineering Awards in Birmingham (March 2014), Dalriada’s Robotics club was invited for this unforgettable and unique experience. The team consisted of Oliver Warke, Claire Mulholland, James Hancock and Finlay Roulston, along with Mrs McShane and Mr Gamble.
On arrival, we were given a tour of the three main Google buildings that housed teams of engineers, linguists, developers, educators, international relations personnel and much more. It was clearly evident to us why Fortune Magazine named Google as the 2014 ‘Best Company Work For’. It almost felt like walking into Willy Wonka’s Chocoalate factory due to the vivid colours, strange furniture and ‘futuristic’ feel of the building.
One of the highlights was a talk given to us by one of the engineers who is involved with the ‘Google X’ programme. Without going into too much detail (!) it was amazing to hear how Google ‘aims for the moon’ in everything they do and even encourage failure! Quite literally, their Space Elevator project was mind blowing even though it hasn’t been a huge success yet. The self-driving Google car has now clocked up some 6000 miles and is supposed to be 20 times safer than any human-driven car. Their whole ethos encourages Googlers (employees) to aim for the near impossible with the hope that much can be learnt, even in failure.
I better not say too much more but, if you want to find out more, just Google it.