Today, Google is a respected, multi-billion dollar, multinational tech company, known around the world.
But it wasn’t always the case. A new book has revealed the wild early days at Google when it was a booze-soaked, hard-partying start-up.
Charlie Ayers, the first chef at Google’s cafeteria, opened up about the company’s drug-fueled parties and the ‘harem’ of ‘hot girls’ who he said surrounded founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.
‘Larry and Sergey had like this gaggle of girls who were hot, and all become like their little harem of admins, I call them the L&S Harem,’ he said in Valley of Genius – which reveals the ‘uncensored’ story of the wild west days in Silicon Valley – as told by the hackers, founders, and ‘freaks who made it boom.’
‘All those girls are now different heads of departments in that company, years later,’ he said, according to an except obtained by Vanity Fair.
. A new book has revealed the wild early days at Google when it was a booze-soaked, hard-partying start-up (Larry Page (L), Co-Founder and President, Products and Sergey Brin, Co-Founder and President in 1998)
Heather Cairns, the fourth Google employee and its first human resources manager, added that staff had concerns about Brin’s relationship with his female employees.
‘You kind of trusted Larry with his personal life,’ she said. ‘We always kind of worried that Sergey was going to date somebody in the company.’
Brin later had an affair with Google Glass marketing manager Amanda Rosenberg, which led to his divorce with his wife, 23andMe co-founder Anne Wojcicki.
Cairns added that sex between employees in the office was so common place that it wasn’t unusual to walk in on staff in the act.
‘Remember, we’re a bunch of twentysomethings except for me — ancient at 35, so there’s some hormones and they’re raging.’
Charlie Ayers, (pictured) the first chef at Google’s cafeteria, opened up about the company’s drug-fueled parties and the ‘harem’ of ‘hot girls’ who he said surrounded founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin
Others described the atmosphere at Google as one of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.
‘On the ski trips in Squaw Valley, I would have these unsanctioned parties and finally the company was like, ‘All right, we’ll give Charlie what he wants,’ said Ayers, who was previously a chef for the Grateful Dead.
Valley of Genius reveals the ‘uncensored’ story of the wild west days in Silicon Valley – as told by the hackers, founders, and ‘freaks who made it boom’
‘And I created Charlie’s Den. I had live bands, D.J.s, and we bought truckloads of alcohol and a bunch of pot and made ganja goo balls.
‘I remember people coming up to me and saying, ‘I’m hallucinating. What the (expletive) is in those?’
When they weren’t partying hard, Google employees were working hard.
Back in its idealistic early days, the founders reportedly were against using advertising – until they saw all their competitors doing the same.
So they agreed to do it with the mantra ‘don’t be evil’.
Former Google employee Marissa Mayer, who went onto become the CEO of Yahoo, described the brainstorming sessions where any ideas would go.
‘I was there the day we did the first Street View experiments,’ Mayer, who later became CEO of Yahoo, said. She said they rented a camera from Wolf Camera, hopped in a blue Volkswagen bug and ‘just started driving around Palo Alto taking a photo every 15 seconds, and then, at the end of the day, we took photo-stitching software to see if we could stitch the pictures together.’
Google staff would go to the infamous hippie festival Burning Man (pictured is Larry Page)
Google has always avoided typical corporate culture (pictured is the London headquarters) but in the early days, the counterculture was much more pronounced
Doug Edwards, the 59th member of staff to join Google, said that Brin even once suggested projecting their logo on the moon during one of their brainstorming sessions.
‘He wanted to take the entire marketing budget and use it to help Chechen refugees.,’ he added. ‘He wanted to make Google-branded condoms that we would give out to high schools,’ Edwards said.
‘Some things we actually did go out and build — like driverless cars,’ Mayer said. ‘We brainstormed that.’
Instead of corporate company retreats, Google staff would go to the infamous hippie festival Burning Man. Their first ever Google Doodle, was in fact an out of office informing customers ‘We’re all at Burning Man.’
Ayers recalled his bizarre interview; with Page sitting on a huge inflatable ball.
‘I left them, thinking that ‘These guys are crazy. They don’t need a chef!’ he said.
He added that the counter culture was so strong that it was an unwritten rule that applicants turning up in a corporate-looking suit would not be hired.
The book is available now.
Google did not respond to Vanity Fair’s request for comment.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5944399/Sex-drugs-coding-wild-early-days-Google.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490 Source: MailOnline | Copyright © MailOnline, All Rights Reserved