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Steve Yegge, "What Would You Do With Your Own Google?" - OSCON Data 2011

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It's 2021. You have a petabyte drive on your keychain, your startup company leases bulk cloud storage by the exabyte, and you have a million cores for data crunching. You even can have your own copy of the entire world's public semantic data. What do you do with it? If you're not sure yet, I've got plenty of ideas for you. About Steve Yegge (Google): Steve Yegge is a software engineer with over twenty years of industry experience. He has worked on everything from embedded systems to distributed systems to e-commerce, online games and much more. Steve has been at Google for the past six years, where he has worked on Ads and Music systems, and most recently on a project to organize and serve all the world's compiler output. Prior to joining Google, Steve was a Senior Engineering Manager at Amazon.com, where he spent nearly seven years leading teams in Developer Tools and Customer Service systems. Steve graduated from the University of Washington with a B.S. in Computer Science. Don't miss an upload! Subscribe! http://goo.gl/szEauh Stay Connected to O'Reilly Media by Email - http://goo.gl/YZSWbO Follow O'Reilly Media: http://plus.google.com/+oreillymedia https://www.facebook.com/OReilly https://twitter.com/OReillyMedia
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Text Comments (47)
Harry Moreno (5 months ago)
This was 7 years ago. I wonder what hard problems he's been able to solve since then
Tiejun Gao (7 months ago)
It seems only I noticed the guy has a very hot wife.
haotian yan (5 months ago)
It looks like an asian girl.
ILykToDoDuhDrifting (8 months ago)
This guy is working on meals on wheels for hipsters in southeast asia now.
徐东杰 (2 years ago)
I love cats ,too
shubhransu605 (2 years ago)
This is such an inspirational talk. The world for sure doesn't need another Facebook or probably doesn't even need the one that's already there! There are bigger problems to solve!
Rick Don (3 years ago)
so holy inspiration sparkled !!!
Thomas Moerman (4 years ago)
I re-watch this every now and again to remind myself of priorities in life.
Orlando Boffill (5 years ago)
Google trying to change the world? Yea, by teaming up with NSA to spy on the world. Thanks, Google.
ihateuutube (6 years ago)
Steve Yegge is such a worthless blowhard.
synthpop88 (6 years ago)
They are not socially useless. I find the arrogance that you exude in declaring an entire set of professions "socially useless" borderline offensive and revealing of the lack of thought you've put into this subject.
SamAndPatrick (6 years ago)
@rstar3000 You sir, made my day. Thanks :)
Uncompetative (6 years ago)
Couldn't Google just reverse-engineer the genome of different cat breeds? That way, everyone's happy.
rstar3000 (6 years ago)
eligottlieb (6 years ago)
@ericgjertsen he ignores political struggle because he's a West Coast techie. There's something in the air out there that makes techies believe they can Save the World through "innovation". Signed, an East Coast techie with a heavy interest in politics. OCCUPY WALL STREET!
eligottlieb (6 years ago)
Sir, on the subject of the human genome, BIOLOGY DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY! GOODNIGHT!
CDM192 (6 years ago)
I'm impressed with his verbal reparte and delivery. What I gleaned from this lecture is how mobile devices, advertising and social networks contribute greatly to social engineering.
DNAutics (6 years ago)
There are too many bioinformaticists and not enough bio wetlabbers. Because working with computers is too easy relative to working with living systems. We've data mined the heck out of the world's DNA and it's still not quite enough. Because we're only blindly manipulating data and not THINKING about the data.
Leo L.S. LIU (6 years ago)
I love cats
Tessa Norris (7 years ago)
@seahawks78 Math and science grad school in the US is filled with foreigners because Americans can get great-paying technology jobs with a B.S. degree. Coming to a U.S. grad school is an opportunity for people from other parts of the world to have a realistic shot at finding a U.S. job after graduation and getting much better job opportunities.
iktoe (7 years ago)
@ericgjertsen you really dont get it.
Varun Gulshan (7 years ago)
For HN readers, the quitting part is not the best part of the talk. So don't just jump to 14:30 and watch that. The main point is to think about working on problems that are useful for society.
Monad93 (7 years ago)
Do jadensmith a girlfriend
Neurogami (7 years ago)
@emilepetrone Except he doesn't *really* quit. He "quits" the Google project he doesn't care for so he can go back to the Google project he *does* care for. (Yeah, it *sounds* like he's quitting Google, "skin in the game", and all that, but it turns out that he's not quitting much of anything.)
Andy Czerwonka (7 years ago)
Zero Radius (7 years ago)
Inspirational. Great speech.
austinmcconnell (7 years ago)
Take a drink every time he says, 'right?' after a sentence.
joepesci15000 (7 years ago)
Apathy + Steve Yegge = Inspiration Very nice. Thank you for this I needed it.
Cameron Goodale (7 years ago)
This feels very much like a TED talk, and very cool.
tutysara (7 years ago)
Himm nice talk. Love it.
uzanto98 (7 years ago)
To Steve Yegge and Tim O'Reilly. Yes, I own physical copies of 2 of these books, and have several others in a folder on Safari. Yes, publish more. I will be there reading them.
MrNightLifeLover (7 years ago)
Recently got a masters in CS now looking for a job.. I would love to do something not Web related, but jobs seems rather hard to find.
M Snow (7 years ago)
Jonathan Hartley (7 years ago)
@emilepetrone No he doesn't. He quits one project. That's a huuuuge difference!
Daniel Ribeiro (7 years ago)
@emilepetrone He did not really quit Google. Just the project.
Interdiffusion (7 years ago)
I hope to be working with you soon, Steve Yegge.
sandbag45 (7 years ago)
Rockstar and Bethesda operate on principal and dont suckle the sequel teat? Is he high? Two companies well known for producing almost exclusively derivative works? Who have regularly been shown to operate in a classic corporate manor? Rockstar especially known for crapping on and shutting down studios? All credibility just went out the window for me.
luiskov (7 years ago)
Truly inspiring speech. It's a shame that 99% of the ninjas out there care just for the money and their egos. Chapeau Steve!
Daniel Lindsley (7 years ago)
@SaveTheRbtz Nah, probably Yegge's boss. :)
Alexey Ivanov (7 years ago)
Wow, 1 down vote? Someone from facebook? =)
simon333 (7 years ago)
This was fantastic!
monkeyjamboree (7 years ago)
While I don't think it was a good idea for him to quit like that, I follow his line of thinking and am glad he is following what he believes to be right. Bravo, Steve. Bravo.
Ishan Jayawardene (7 years ago)
That was awesome.
Richard Puckett (7 years ago)
Integrity, thy name is Steve Yegge. Bravo.
fapestniegd (7 years ago)
The great thing about burning bridges is that it keeps you moving forward. You can't spend time waffling about past decisions if you can't go back.
Giancarlo Angulo (7 years ago)
You're the man Steve!!!!
Petko Fiziev (7 years ago)
I wanna see him in five years from now. Hopefully, he will not go back to lolcatz projects again.

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