Last week I was in the USA for the first time. It was great. My employers Aplix sent me out to an Ajax conference. Also see the accepted paper I submitted.
My first impression was the yellow colour scheme that the place seem to have. 3 investigators country. :) The place is a bit more Asian than I expected. McDonalds sign just in Chinese…
If you’re wondering why I was so slow with 2.3 release of Wordpress, it was because I was at the release party. Awesome to meet Matt and surprisingly Mark Pilgrim and Tantek Celik. Geek paradise! The conversations seemed much “higher bandwidth” or perhaps more stimulating than conversing before.
I also met with some other excellent friends that I’ve met on my travels. I even bumped into my old Professor from school!
The troubling thing I found with the place was the homeless/beggars. I took a moment or two to chat with a couple and I was amazed to find them so articulate. One guy had some pretty good poetry. I didn’t probe further, except I did read through the “Street spirit” paper. Bit depressing. My Californian friends says there are so many homeless people here, because California has the best homeless policies and the best weather. Probably some truth in that.
I like a croissant in the morning and I found the croissants a bit gross really. Yes I randomly sampled a couple of places. Had some great meals at “House of Nanking” and heavy breakfasts at “Sears fine foods”. They seem really popular tourist hits, though they were good. Bit disappointed by the Clam chowder and seafood on offer really. Guess you need to splash out. Coffee is good & smooth, though I am not used to it and it really felt painful after a couple of refills.
Jet lag sucked. Now I am back in the UK, I feel much better. Though I still have some sort of chest infection to work through.
Let me think. The highlights were absorbing the view from my hotel window on the 29th level. Riding across the Golden gate bridge and surrounds. AWESOME. Super friendly and helpful people. Shopping was also a great experience.
I found Mountain View and that sort of “campus culture” really really boring. Reminds me of Bath University. I couldn’t live there or in the suburbs. It either has to be city or proper country for me. I know I now live in Woking, though Woking is only 30mins from London. That’s London and a bit of green. ;)
Darn I miss the weather in California…