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acme (189)

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Leon Brocard (aka acme) is an orange-loving Perl eurohacker with many varied contributions to the Perl community, including the GraphViz module on the CPAN. YAPC::Europe was all his fault. He is still looking for a Perl Monger group he can start which begins with the letter 'D'.

Journal of acme (189)

Monday March 21, 2005
08:24 PM


[ #23777 ]
So in a where-in-the-world-is-acme-now-and-isn't-it-time-he-starts-to-really-loathe-time zones kinda way, today I was in Mountain View, California at Google's Building 42. Yes, 42. I know what you're thinking, but they don't actually number buildings after the answer to life, the universe, and everything. There's a building 43 too.

Considering I've been in sunny spring-break-central Fort Lauderdale, California, it's a bit colder here. And cloudy. And it rained a bit. And there's no beach. But the cars are still huge!

You know when dot-com fever was everywhere, and all these companies spent money on their employees and silly toys and cute offices and everything? Well, Google is like a time warp. They have lava lamps absolutely everywhere. The offices are cool and asymmetrical, Google logos everywhere, kitchens, free drinks, balloons and train sets. It is retro chic, in a weird dot-com-still-exists way. Very neat.

I got to see quite a bit of Google, due to unintentionally getting lost, and the fact that lunch was fabulous. No really, fabulous. We're talking wonderful kitchen, wide range of food all really well seasoned and cooked, and excellent chocolate brownies. It's like a university, only where all the students are intelligent, the buildings fancy, and the food amazing. Yes, I was impressed.

I had heard about some people visiting Google for fun/food, but now I really understand. Google is a dream. A hope. A new frontier, with interesting scaling problems. Now who wants a Google lava lamp?

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  • Hmm yeah I know a building that *did* get 42 on purpose. So there! Glad you at least had some of our weather ;)
  • ... you coulda visited us over here at Yahoo! too.
  • Then just set your watch to UTC (GMT, Zulu, UT+0) and be done with it. Makes listening to international shortwave news easier too.

    World Timezone Map [] Multi-TimeZone Clock [] (which doesn't support the 0.5Hr splinters ... or +12 3/4 )

    Seriously, sounds like a fun trip.

    # I had a sig when sigs were cool
    use Sig;
    • I set my digital cameras to Zulu, which makes it easy to not need to remember to reset them as I travel. And I have a script that reads the EXIF "created at" time and forces the mod_time on the file to that time, making them easily discernable at the Finder or "ls -lt" level about recent activity (timezone localized).
      • Randal L. Schwartz
      • Stonehenge
      • I've been asked for the script. Here it is in all it's undebugged and undocumented hacked-up glory:

        #!/usr/bin/env perl
        use strict;

        use Image::ExifTool qw(ImageInfo);

        use Time::Local;

        for my $file (@ARGV) {
          my $ii = ImageInfo($file, qw(DateTimeOriginal DateTime))
            or warn("Skipping $file\n"), next;
          my ($created) =
            grep /\S/, @$ii{qw(DateTimeOriginal DateTime)};
          next unless $created;
          warn "using $created for $file\n";
          if ($created =~ s/([-+ ])(\d\d):

        • Randal L. Schwartz
        • Stonehenge